OMAHA, Neb. — The United Way will provide extra training for employees who work with students in Omaha after-school programs.

The Omaha World-Herald ( ) reports that employees in 31 Omaha after-school programs will receive training from the new United Way Women’s Leadership Council initiative. The council is partnering with the Collective for Youth, a nonprofit group that runs after-school centers in Omaha Public Schools. Participating programs serve about 4,500 students across the metropolitan area.

The training will touch on academics, but will mainly focus on helping kids learn proper behavior and social interaction.

The goal of the initiative is to elevate learning experiences and achievements for students who are living in poverty by improving the skills of 250 staff members who work with them.

The initiative will begin July 1 with the help of a $150,000 grant from the council to the collective. According to Annie Bird, the community impact chairwoman for the United Way council, the group has committed to providing $450,000 to the nonprofit for the program’s first three years.

“We were very happy to partner with them. They put a lot of effort into researching a tried and true method of training,” Bird said.

According to council chairwoman Annette Smith, Omaha businesswomen, philanthropists and community volunteers have pledged $200,000 in 90 days to the initiative.

“We were a bit overwhelmed at how well received this was,” Bird said.

Megan Addison, executive director of the collective said that many of the staffers are college students who will benefit long-term from the training.

“They’ll gain skills that could translate into other jobs in the future. College students will have more direct support in classroom management,” she said.