Many of my friends, family member, teachers, and mentors know how much I love education: it made me who I am. I joined Citizen Schools because I wanted an opportunity to give back. Last year, I taught sixth graders, half of whom are of Haitian background. Currently, I am teaching seventh graders. When I first stepped into Ivy Hill Elementary school, there was flash of memory of a little girl in sixth grade in the Philadelphia Public Schools. Everything was foreign to me, the language, the education system, the food, you name it.
As a Teaching Fellow at Ivy Hill, which is located in the west ward of Newark, I see this little girl every day. I have students who just recently moved to Newark from Haiti due to the ongoing tragedy that continues to strike the nation. Everything is foreign to them, even the language. Two of my brightest students still have their mothers in Haiti. This is the opportunity to give back that I am talking about; an opportunity for me to be their mentor, just like my mentors were to me. It is an opportunity to keep students and parents in the loop, as I brush up on my French skills and explain things to students in French or speak to their parents. And it is an opportunity to help them adjust to this environment as many of my friends and family have helped me.
Citizen Schools helps students like mine realize that no matter the struggles, with community involvements and caring adults, we can achieve our dreams. You, too, can help these students achieve their dreams. Citizen Schools cannot do all that it does without your help. To succeed, we need your support and I hope you’ll join me in this worthy cause.