*Names have been changed for identity reasons.
Isaiah is a 2nd grader who has been with New Horizons since we started at his school. In the beginning, it was not uncommon for Isaiah to either shut down, be angry, or even get really upset when he would read with us. He also was very behind in his grade level in reading. While he has been progressing over the past year, this last month in particular, we have seen him transform into such a smart, beautiful child of God. He is starting to read with a new found confidence, and last week, he wrote a book report for us after he finished one of his first ever chapter books. He consistently is improving his reading, and we also have just seen a huge change in his participation his Bible time. Something has just clicked, and it’s been awesome to watch!
When we first met Omar, he was often aloof and distant. He was a great kid with such a kind spirit but tended to be easily distracted and created disruptions. It was not uncommon to repeatedly redirect and strive for focus. In a few short months working with our dedicated team of mentors, it’s been amazing to see the difference. He is still a sweet, kind-hearted kid, but he has shown so much progress in his focus and dedication, and we are starting to see the reading growth start to pick up as well.
From the moment she arrived, Francely was easily a youth that was “unnoticeable.” In fact, that was her intention. She disliked any type of attention and did not like to participate, speak, or be acknowledged in any form. However, over the course of this school year, we have slowly seen her open up to both her mentors and leaders. Also, she has been involved in every game and activity we play. It’s been fun to watch because she is actually quite competitive. Over the last month, she has volunteered to read the “RULES” aloud, participate in trivia competitions with her team, and is stepping up to be a leader in our afterschool club!
Fall 2018 Stories
In just a few short months, New Horizons kids are making great strides. Through God’s grace and the generous support of so many, we are celebrating today because of stories like the ones below.
Our Super Kids are becoming stronger readers. They read with a mentor each day and get additional support in our iPad computer lab donated by SAP. In fact, 73% of our readers advanced at least one grade level last school year. The challenge is that 8 in 10 elementary students in our programs are behind, but our kids, volunteers, and staff are working hard each day to change this story!
“We started off the year with a few students who were struggling in a major way, however, being able to implement more one-on-one tutoring has made a HUGE difference. With individualized attention, those kids have grown leaps and bounds in their literacy, and now that they have seen some wins, their behavior has changed!”
“I have been working with one student on his sight words. When I first started tutoring him, he knew none of the words and was just guessing aimlessly. He has made so much progress in just two weeks. He knows so many more words and is more confident now. I am truly amazed by his progress each day.”
Studies say that 1 in 3 young people grow up without a mentor. Your support is meeting this critical need for at-risk youth, and more kids are finding mentors to provide homework help, positive guidance, and Christian faith building this year!
“One middle school parent came to us after the parent meeting, and said ‘There is a tangible difference in my son, he went from not talking to me when we’re at home, to now opening up more. We’ve had some very good conversations in the last couple of weeks.’”
From college students to retired adults, mentors like Braxton (above) are dedicated to meeting this need in our city. We are telling at-risk kids a different story and helping them live out God’s best in their lives. Learn more here about how you too can get involved in impacting the life of a child.