Help a child - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Posted by: Alisa Nave, 8/30/04, 10:00pm

Help a child

By: Donna Davis

"Your students are going to be waiting and looking forward to seeing you every week." These people are going back to school. Not to learn but to teach. They are part of Memphis city schools "our Children, our future" volunteer tutoring program, which seeks adults to tutor students in math or reading. "This not only helps their academic achievement, but also helps their self esteem by having someone from the community come in and work one on one and take an interest in our students. It's very beneficial to our students," said Volunteer Program Manager Barbara Dawson. "To help a young person is probably one of the highest callings you can have. And I have the utmost respect for teachers, and teachers need some help. They are handed a bad deck of cards. And I think it's up to people in the community to be of assistance to them," said Volunteer Robert Benham. They only ask that you donate an hour a week. Most of the tutors work other jobs. Some of them tutor on their lunch hour. All of them feel it's time to stop talking about the problems with education in Memphis, and do something about them. "I think that everybody has a duty to put something back into a community, and right now, the weakest link in our chain in Memphis is the school system, and become a passion with me." Many of the volunteers will go to thirty Memphis city schools who most need the help. "That's our future. That's the most important project that we could ever try to be involved with," said Volunteer John Bowen. Dawson says many students have gone from making D's to making A's and B's as a result of the tutoring. She hopes the community will continue to invest in its children one student at a time. To become a Memphis city schools volunteer tutor you must attend one three hour training session and pass a criminal background check. For more information call 416-5732.

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