Her small shoulders held more than any child should have to carry…
she just needed someone to help lift the load.
It was no wonder that Marla was failing fourth grade – her small shoulders were saddled with more challenges at 9 years old than many people face in a lifetime. Marla’s teacher referred her to the Opportunity Center because she was woefully behind in reading and math, and completely unfocused in class.
As long as Marla could remember, her family always struggled to make ends meet. Then, her mom was diagnosed with cancer. Her father was juggling his job, trips to and from the hospital, and caring for Marla and her 4-year old brother. Marla worried constantly about her brother.
Marla started the Opportunity Center’s after-school program as a distracted little girl, but our teachers showed her how she could help her entire family by working hard to improve in school. Marla became determined to catch up. She put tremendous effort into her one-on-one tutoring sessions. The day before a test, she’d ask our teachers to quiz her over and over, even when she already knew all the answers. Marla’s teacher could not believe the change in Marla. By year end, she was passing all her subjects and engaged at school.
While Marla was making great strides with us after school, her father was able to focus on bringing home steady income for his family and getting his wife to chemotherapy treatments.
Marla is now doing great in school, and that is a comfort to her mom who continues to fight cancer.
Marla’s family lives right here in your community. You can help a child like Marla carry her burden by donating now.