While schools in Davidson County remain closed for in-person instruction, the E-Learning Academy at the J. Smith Young YMCA in Lexington is living its mission in an important way for seven homeless students from three families.
The Y coordinated with the local school system, city transportation system and social services to provide these children, age 6 to 12, with the opportunity to participate in the E-Learning Academy at no cost to their families.
“We’ve seen a huge need in Lexington for child care and food access since the pandemic began,” said Jen Fuller-Allen, Operations Director, at the Y. “Our Board of Directors has been committed to serving our community where it needs us most. Beyond serving more than 90,000 meals since April 2020 to those in need, we have provided a safe place for as many as 188 students to participate in school virtually.”
“This school year has been so challenging for all children, and it means a lot to our staff that we can support these families who wouldn’t have a consistent place, Internet access and a support system to stay on track with their schooling without our program,” Fuller-Allen said. “Our entire team has stepped up to support them in any way they can.”
“One of the children celebrated a birthday in December,” Fuller-Allen continued. “None of us planned in advance, but our E-learning staff, administrative staff and housekeeping team all surprised her with pizza, cupcakes and gifts, and recognized her in special ways. When her mom came to pick her up that afternoon, she told her mom, ‘This was the best birthday I’ve ever had!’”
(Jan. 25, 2021)