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Season of Plenty
Alexus, a first-grade student at Positive Tomorrows elementary school in Oklahoma City, learns about animals in Mrs. Gill’s class.
Photo by LORI DUCKWORTH
Oklahomans looking to give back during the holidays need look no further than these nonprofit organizations doing good work to help others at home.
By Karlie Tipton
Published November/December 2016
Investing In Futures
An Oklahoma City elementary school gives students the building blocks for a brighter tomorrow.
For many students, getting ready for school every morning is at worst a hassle: Get out of bed, throw on some clothes, and scarf down a bowl of cereal before running out the door. But for the more than 7,500 homeless children in Oklahoma City, there’s often no food, no clean clothes, and no bed. While many of these children will be left behind, Positive Tomorrows offers a chance for some to break the cycle of homelessness.
Positive Tomorrows supplies basics—including two daily meals and a new clothing closet—as well as a staff to help kids catch up academically. With five certified teachers, five teacher’s aides, four case workers, and two counselors, the school offers its seventy-four pre-K through fifth graders the special attention many children, let alone those in impoverished areas, might never receive. That also extends beyond the classroom.
“Each child gets their own birthday party with a cake and presents,” says development officer Rachel Durham. “They think, ‘I get a cake with my name on it? What else am I worth?’”
But if there’s one thing Positive Tomorrows gives its students above all else, it’s a sense of safety.
“When they’re here, they can relax and be kids,” says president and principal Susan Agel. “It really makes a difference in their lives and allows them to move beyond their circumstances.”
HOW TO HELP: Positive Tomorrows, (405) 556-5082 or positivetomorrows.org.