Teenagers in Tuscaloosa will soon have a new alternative for activities after school. Lift Alabama will have free afterschool programming this March.

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Beginning March 21, 2022, Lift Alabama will be providing free afterschool programming for children ages 12-18 at the Mcdonald Hughes Community Center in Tuscaloosa.

Lift Academy will offer children a list of activities and learning opportunities such as:

  • STEM
  • Internet Safety
  • Financial Literacy
  • Fitness Training
  • Soft Skills Training
  • Fine Arts Exploration
  • Suicide & Bullying Prevention
  • Sexual Health Education
  • College & Career Readiness
  • Healthy Living

Katherine Waldon. Co-Founder of Lift Alabama spoke on the importance of this program and why it's needed. "It’s important because we’re seeing an alarming rise in youth suicide rates, juvenile crime, and a decrease in high school completion. Our teens need help, motivation, structure, correction, support, and love."

Katherine Waldon
Katherine Waldon

Waldon mentioned, "We’ve placed this burden on our education system, parents, law enforcement, etc. It’s an opportunity for our entire community to support a safe space for teens to thrive."

Katherine Waldon founded Lift Alabama with her husband Corey with a mission to educate, motivate, and activate the full potential that lies within every young person through education, workforce, health, fitness, and community events and resources.

"My husband and I are anxious and excited! We started as a small summer Saturday program in our church’s basement in 2018 and now we’re expanding to a year-round after-school program," says Waldon.

"We hope our parents no longer have to worry about their child’s safety in these evening hours or feel guilty for being at work to provide for their basic needs. Instead, they know their child will be safe, fed, nurtured, and enriched."

Many believe that teens in Tuscaloosa need a program like this to occupy their time after school as well as help them learn valuable life skills and lessons.


Waldon states, "Our teens will finally feel like they have something they can call their own. Where they can be themselves and still be loved. Most importantly we plan to help develop well-rounded youth and prepare them for their next phase of life whether that’s college, career, or military. "

The Lift  Academy will only be accepting 50 students and as of February 28th, there are 27 spots left for the program. If you'd like to register your child for this afterschool program, click here. 

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