In my experience of working with youth in Allentown, I have noticed that some people will describe Allentown as an "underserved area". Sometimes they'll add the term "at risk youth" to describe the students with whom I work. I no longer use these words for specific reasons. I understand that Allentown has its challenges, which are very real. However, the youth I work with are full of potential. Period.
To be honest, when I went to make the mini-documentary with my former students at the Allentown Learning & Engagement Center (ALEC), I had no idea what they would say when I asked them about their neighborhood. Here's what I heard, "Yeah, it's peaceful...My neighborhood is great...I said sometimes I think it's beautiful..." I didn't tell them to say those things. That's what they thought, what they wanted to share.
ALEC is a program of the Brashear Association. Students come to ALEC after school, on the weekends and in the summer. To learn more about the Brashear Association, check out http://www.brashearassociation.org and get great tips about afterschool programs and creative learning at http://www.brashearkids.com.