The New Kids

Mr. Alex at Casa Linda in summer 2012

Mr. Alex at Casa Linda in summer 2012

Colby, a first grader, started coming to the program in January. At the time, he could barely read two words and would just try and guess the answers to his homework. At the same time, Chapel Hill received a new intern who was having some trouble finding his place within the community that had formed. Alex, the intern, started patiently helping Colby with his homework on a daily basis. There were times when Colby would run wild and Alex would softly ask him to sit back down to finish his homework. The two boys formed a bond as Colby could tell that Mr. Alex truly cared for him and wanted to help him learn to read. Mr. Alex started to figure out when Colby needed to take a break from homework and go outside to play basketball. Through hard work and patience, Colby can now read complete sentences and sound out words that he does not know.

As Colby’s reading improved, so did Mr. Alex’s confidence. Alex started helping kids who wanted to learn the piano pick up the basics of it. He also felt more confident letting the kids see some of his talents and became more confident working in the after school program overall. During the last Family Fun Night, Colby’s mom told Mr. Alex how appreciative she is of all his hard work with Colby. She told him over and over how proud she is of Colby and how Colby wasn’t getting enough help with his reading until he came to Project Transformation.

Colby and Alex’s stories parallel each other’s. They came in to the program as “the new kids” and they formed a friendship that has helped both grow so much in just a few short months.

Rachel Luna
Chapel Hill UMC
Site Coordinator

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