Angel, her sister, and her two brothers all participated in La Mesita’s Summer Program. Near the end of the summer several of the older kids participated in the Peace Poetry contest and three girls, including Angel, were selected as winners. Angel’s poetry illustrated how one beautiful girl’s spirit can shine given the right opportunities and support.”
Angel moved into A New Leaf’s La Mesita Housing Program at the start of the summer break in 2016. Her mom is a single parent, and in addition to 10-year-old Angel, she has a 6-year-old daughter, and two boys, 12 and 13-years-old. La Mesita offers a safe, supportive home where each family member has access to on-site services to support them through challenging times.
The onsite After School and Summer Programs are important for so many kids at La Mesita. It provides much more than a safe place for kids to be during their out-of-school time. The program provides academic, social, and emotional support, direct counseling staff, opportunities to participate in enriching field trips and activities, and access to nutritious food and exercise.
Angel, her sister, and her two brothers all participated in La Mesita’s After School and Summer Program, which was offered for the first time in 2016. Angel was quiet and reserved, and although she was very bright, she seemed to lack confidence in herself. But as the summer progressed, Angel flourished in the program. She responded very positively to the structure the program provided and began taking a leadership role, helping the younger kids with their learning activities. She would gently remind others of the rules and why they were important.
Near the end of the summer several of the older kids participated in the Peace Poetry contest sponsored by Mesa Community College. Three girls, including Angel, were selected as winners. Angel’s poetry illustrated how one beautiful girl’s spirit can shine given the right opportunities and support. A New Leaf is proud to provide these opportunities and support for kids each year in the La Mesita After School and Summer Programs.
With the support she received at the La Mesita After School and Summer Program, and continued support from the After School Program, Angel started her 5th grade year off strong. She is on the Honor Roll and serves on her school’s Student Council. The leadership skills she developed at La Mesita helped give her the confidence she needed to take on challenges and be a role model for others. A New Leaf is proud of Angel, and all the kids we have the honor of serving. We can’t wait to see where they will go from here.