My oldest son Andrell struggles in school believing he wasn’t as smart as the rest of the kids. He kept going, learning to ask for help! I would ask him, “How bad do you want it?” I wanted him to be proud of himself and his achievements. Open Your Heart supplied the tools for Andrell to help him on his way to graduate high school and now college and becoming a teacher.
Of all my children, Lonnie had struggled the most, and couldn’t quite fit in with the other kids. Everyday there was a new excuse to not attend classes. Lonnie ended up attending the local Alternative High School. Open Your Heart assisted with the money for transportation to get Lonnie to school every day. Lonnie finished high school; he would never have finished without the help from Open Your Heart.
Aric graduated from High School this year as a star athlete. He took first in State for the triple jump, second for the long jump! Open Your Heart provided the money for sports fees, uniform rentals, cleats and now that he has graduated he will be on his way to UW River Falls! Open Your Heart was a vital part of his success.
LaKyia is my fourth child and she was doing well, but now is struggling. She will be a sophomore in high school. She is starting to have identity issues, gauging her ears and wanting tattoos. A big part of Open Your Heart is that it gives kids what they need to fit in. It is so important to get everything on the school supply list and not be the kids that is “without”.
Aysya is in the 6th grade. She is really into music, playing the viola. She does well but has an IEP right now and struggles. Andrell, her brother is helping her with some of her studies.
My baby boy E.J. is 6 years old. E.J. is a smart kid and does really well in school. He has so much energy we are looking for an outlet for him.
No one will ever really know how much my children were helped with the assistance of the Open Your Heart education grant. Being homeless takes its toll on a family, moving place to place. Education comes from many places for children, but the classroom offers perhaps the only stability in our children’s lives.
I hope that this letter inspires all who read it. I am grateful for the opportunity to share our success story.
Lakisha McCloud