Success Stories

Helping Homeless Families

“Look the zipper works!” cried Ashley as she ran around the room giggling, and showing off her new pink winter jacket. This is “my very first and my very best coat.” What Ashley meant was this is the first time she had received a coat that wasn’t a hand me down. And the first time she was in possession of a garment with a functioning zipper. Ashley loves school, but her attendance was sporadic because she didn’t have a warm sweater or jacket. Her family had arrived at a nearby homeless shelter with only the clothes on their backs. In addition to the 500 hundred families that...

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Ashley’s Story

“Look the zipper works!” cried Ashley as she ran around the room giggling and showing off her new pink winter jacket. This is “my very first and my very best coat.” What Ashley meant was that this is the first time she had received a coat that wasn’t a hand me down. And the first time she was in possession of a garment with a functioning zipper. Ashley loves school, but her attendance was sporadic because she didn’t have a warm sweater or jacket. Her family had arrived at a nearby homeless shelter with only the clothes on their backs. Children...

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Saadia’s Story

Saadia was distraught, forlorn, and pregnant with her fourth child when her husband abandoned the family. When her children joined Children of the City’s “Future Safe program” she had no family or support system in the community. Her oldest daughter found out about Children of the City when a classmate invited her to a Super Saturday event. Through a casual conversation we found out that Saadia needed basic supplies, such as emergency food, and baby clothes to keep her household running. She immediately signed up for workshops and services and has become a regular at our...

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David’s Story

David: Growing Up in Children of the City When David Santos was nine years old, a Children of the City outreach counselor visited his home. “My mom just loved it,” recalls David. “She was a single mother, and to hear that someone was willing to grab her four kids and take them for a Saturday morning, well, she agreed to that. I grew up with Children of the City. If I had a dollar for every hour I spent there I could retire right now.” In fact, David has made Children of the City his second home. He began volunteering in the programs when he was a teenager. He wrote and performed Rap...

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Rosa’s Story

Rosa Cintron, at age 12, Brooklyn, New York A few years prior, if someone dared ask Rosa to read, even a book as simple as one by Dr. Seuss, there would have been mayhem. In the midst of screaming and pounding fists, Rosa was known to overturn her desk and send books flying across the room. “I would have tantrums,” explains Rosa. “I would think, ‘Are they slow? Why don’t they understand? I don’t read!! Do they even care?’” Schoolteachers gave up on Rosa, aiming to manage her tantrums rather than provide any instruction. “They just put me aside,” she says. “In third...

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Kace’s Story 2017

“I have braces now, so I don’t like smiling,” Kace admits. The loquacious 17 year old is hoping to get them off in time for senior prom next year. She beams when she talks about her volunteer work at the Afterschool Program and Super Saturday. “I want to help because Children of the City was my whole childhood.” She and her older sister Rosa were rescued from a devastating home situation and placed in our Guardianship Program when Kace was only 3 years old. She refuses to dwell on her past, but speculates that “I’d probably be out on street or dead without Children of the...

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Kace’s Story 2011

“I have nothing but happy memories since Joyce (Mattera) rescued me.” Poised and articulate, it’s hard to imagine that this charismatic 11 year old was once a neglected toddler living in the squalor of an apartment infested with vermin and drug dealers. At three years old, Kace had a mouth full of rotting baby teeth, and was in desperate need of adult attention. Children of the City sought immediate care for Kace and her older sister, and long term resident treatment for their mother (who was suffering from a myriad of mental health issues and addictions.). Children of the City assumed...

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Kace’s Story 2003

Rescued in Time Meet one young girl that didn’t become a statistic. Kace is a vibrant young girl. She loves to laugh and spend her carefree, happy go lucky days learning and playing in school and at Children of the City programs. When she goes home she knows that she has a safe and comfortable home to go to. This wasn’t always the case. When Kace was 3 years old, the place she used to call home is the place she never wants to return to. Her strongest recollections are those of bloody fights, drugs, filth, and no one to look after her. She was often found wandering around the park...

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Islam’s Story

Islam writes: “What if your dreams were demolished? You are the only one who could save the dreams. At that point you pretend to be a superhero and want to make changes. Yet, you have to overcome many challenges and strive to reach that goal. My father was an intelligent and motivated man. He always wanted to become a college professor, but he couldn’t attend college. As the oldest son out of the nine siblings in the family, he decided to forget about his dreams and do something for his family. He left his motherland and traveled all the way to the United States in order to earn some...

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Erica’s Story

Erica is a voracious reader and a serious student. She never goes anywhere without a book since joining Children of the City’s Create Success Program. “I tell other kids how nice it is to get help with your homework and reading at Children of the City”, comments the soft spoken fifth grader. She frequently felt overwhelmed by ordinary homework assignments. “The teachers here are really nice to all the kids. They try to help you more than anyone else does. You get help with everything; even arts and crafts!” After just a few short months, Erica’s grades improved dramatically. She...

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