Throughout the year we have the privilege to hear from students and alumni of how Teach My People has made an impact in their lives.
Let me introduce you to DeQuan. DeQuan was our first high school graduate and first college graduate.
Coming from a town where the parents pay out of pocket to fund the various activities their children participate in, shows an economical divide among the masses. My mother worked three jobs in effort to support me and my two younger brothers as we went through school. Sometimes taking days off if we were sick. Even with her working three jobs, we barely scraped by. Usually, we would only see her once a week, at most twice, because she would go from one job to another, leaving us to be taken care of by our grandmother. We didn’t really have an influential adult role model. By watching her work ethic, we were taught that if you don’t do it; no one else is going to do it for you. My mother did the best that she could by feeding and clothing us and I would not be here without her support. But even so, there was still something missing growing up.
I was apart of Teach My People for 11 years. My years in grade school seemed to be the longest uphill battle I’ve ever had in my life. Between school, sports, work, and when I was old enough, helping to take care of my younger siblings... life was stressful. Teach My People was a cushion for my stress during the week. Right after school they would feed us and ask us how our day was. Which meant a lot because my mom wasn’t home to ask. School was the hardest part! I didn’t pick things up as easily as everyone else did and the thought of going to college was a foreign concept to me. Keyword being “was.” Teach My People took us to college games and tours. While I was still in middle school, they had volunteers come from college and spark our interests! They inspired us to be better than what we were accustomed to.
To be honest it took me a while to realize what I was missing as a child. In fact, I didn’t figure it out until my junior year of college. Which is crazy because it was always right in front of me. What I wasn’t receiving was exposure. When I say exposure, I mean a look into the world outside of my own which was what I really needed. This wouldn’t have been possible without Teach My People who gave me to the tools to push through and overcome any obstacle that came my way. You see what Teach My People did was take the obvious disadvantage of the children in our surrounding area and made it a level playing field for anyone and everyone who was interested. The best part was, they made us work for it. We had to prove we wanted to be successful. If you needed help they found it, if you were hungry they fed you, if you were hurt or felt hopeless they loved you. No other place in our area was doing that, and this is what sets Teach My People apart from the rest. You are not going to find a more committed staff that will selflessly love their students like the staff at Teach My People."