Our Stories: Nia

My first child knew his alphabet and numbers at an early age and he continues to excel in school. He might get one B on his report card, but the rest are A’s. When my daughter Nia was born, I quickly found out that God has his own design plan with each child.

Nia struggled learning the alphabet and numbers. My husband and I would often ask ourselves, “Why?” We read to her as a baby and even in the womb. She had a bookshelf full of books in her room. Despite of our efforts to help her academically, she was not catching on. She had the unfortunate luck of losing her teachers during the school year in kindergarten and first grade. In second grade, she was recommended for an early literacy afterschool program made possible by the United Way of Pitt County. We jumped at the chance. I was elated to find out my daughter could get help.

Nia was a child that was at risk of failing the first grade and is now a B/C student. She once had a reading level well below grade level, but is now a few points away from reading on grade level. She is proof of the difference community, schools and families can make when they work together.

Even though I haven’t received a raise in years and the cost of living continues to climb, when I was asked to give to the United Way, I knew I had to because I wanted this program to continue. Thank you to the United Way for making programs available to all families in our community.

Latonya Nixon-Vines, parent of two children, 8th Grade Team Leader and English Language Arts teacher at Farmville Middle School