Manitoba is investing $12 million to help organizations deliver after-school programming to children and young people.

The province has also invested in a co-ordinator to help establish and provide ongoing support for what it is calling the After School Network.

The network, launched Friday, involves 49 organizations that offer after-school programming.

"The After School Network is about bringing together community-based organizations that provide positive activities for children and youth aged six to 18 and is a pillar of our preventative approach to making our communities safer," said Children and Youth Opportunities Minister Kevin Chief.

"The After School Network gives these organizations the opportunity to work together to strengthen after-school programs and … help our province’s children and youth reach their fullest potential."

The Friday launch included 23 organizations who showcased their activities and resources they offer.

Statistics Canada reports that unsupervised time after school is when the largest proportion of youth violent crime takes place and when youth are more likely to experiment with tobacco, alcohol and drugs and be more sexually active, according to a press release from the province.

The After School Network will hold a similar launch event in Thompson on March 19 and 20 for youth‑serving organizations from northern Manitoba.