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“I love AmeriCorps. There is always one more thing to change, to make better….”

Celebrating National AmeriCorps Week: Member Spotlight

Posted on Wednesday, March 14th, 2018 by Lizzie Sarah Biddle. Tags: , , , ,
Edith at service in Legacy Crossing!

Edith is a work of heart.

Creative, warm and dedicated, she embodies AmeriCorps. For refugee and immigrant families, new to Greensboro, her heart makes all the difference.

Originally from Nigeria, Edith has been in the United States for over 25 years. She and her husband, a professor at Bennett College, have 2 young-adult children. She knows the needs of newcomer families because she has been there.

Edith began serving through AmeriCorps in 2014 at Greensboro’s New Arrivals Institute. To this day, she remembers her first student, a 4-year-old Sudanese boy, who understood no English. “That didn’t intimidate him. Not at all.” she recalls. Edith won him over with that big heart of hers. She watched, as he grew from a little guy who cried, when his mother dropped him off, to a confident boy, who played with everyone in the classroom, and had a growing English vocabulary.

Next, Edith served at the Legacy Crossing Community Center coordinating volunteers for the after school youth programs. “I noticed kids gravitate toward me,” she said. “I found I had a gift, so I brought it to Legacy.”

She knew the after school tutoring program was meeting a big need, but that wasn’t enough. She had to reach out to the parents. They needed support. They needed to know about resources that could help their families grow stronger.

What is she most proud of? That spills out fast. “I noticed little 3 and 4 year olds who didn’t have a place to go during the day. Working with the parents and volunteers, we signed their kids up for Pre-K. This way, they transition to Kindergarten without a problem. Families from other countries, just don’t know about Pre-K for their kids.”

Why does AmeriCorps work?

Edith says it because of the training and support. “The CNNC staff members, Cynthia and Khouan, are so knowledgeable. They make all the difference. Their trainings are excellent.” AmeriCorps works hand-in-hand with the community, to tackle some of its most pressing challenges.

AmeriCorps gives Edith the opportunity to serve and make a difference. “I love AmeriCorps. I’ve been serving for almost 4 years. Something keeps bringing me back. There is always one more thing to change, to make better….. for the families and for the children.”

Edith definitely has the heart — a heart for service, for children, for parents, for families…….and for AmeriCorps.

“I can’t stop talking about it. Through it, so much good is done, so many lives improved.”

Apply now to become an AmeriCorps ACCESS Member, like Edith for the 2018-2019 program year.

Support AmeriCorps members, like Edith with a gift to the CNNC.