In Mississippi, one in three children are living below the poverty line. The only hope most of these boys and girls have to break the cycle of poverty is through education – yet they face high barriers to succeeding in school.
By age 2, many children growing up in poverty are already 6 months behind in language development. In Mississippi, nearly 80% of fourth graders score below proficient in reading achievement, and more than 60% of low-income families have no children’s books in their homes. In addition, 40% of Mississippi’s children age 10-17 are overweight or obese.
Parents in the rural community of Bassville, Mississippi cannot afford additional tutoring to help their children improve their reading, writing and basic education skills.
Save the Children’s afterschool activities at GW Carver Elementary School were these families’ only option.
The afterschool literacy program has helped to double the number of children reading at or above grade level, and the nutrition program has provided kids with access to healthy foods.
Jayden, age 8, has been a part of Save the Children’s after-school summer and summer programs in a neighboring community for the last two years – and ever since she began participating, her reading and academic achievement has improved. Jayden can now read on grade level and is performing well on tests and quizzes.
“My children love the program.” Jayden’s mother said. “They are afraid to miss the bus because they would miss afterschool.”
Due to government funding cuts, Save the Children’s afterschool programming at GW Carver Elementary School is in urgent need of support. We hope to restore this program for the 2017-2018 school year, and help 136 Mississippi students access the resources and guidance they need to secure a bright future.