LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A mind is a terrible thing to waste, that's why Pamela and Pastor Sylvester McClain are making sure East Texas youth avoid doing just that.
"They have to turn in their report cards here so we can see where we need to really work with them," Pamela said. "When they come back with their report card and their grades have improved, that really makes me feel good."
"There are kids in the seventh, eighth, and ninth grade that cannot write, read or do math," Sylvester said. "So we've seen a steady improvement in the kid's skills."
From Pre K to 8th grade the nonprofit organization's goal is to empower youth.
"If you want to change or you want to do better and you're willing to commit, then we can help you," Sylvester said.
"Really what we do is help them to focus more," Pamela said. "It's already there, they just need the encouragement to focus and put it out on paper."
The new after school program wants to take a load off parents and help kids with their homework. Students and staff have already seen progress.
"My grades have gotten better," 6th grader, Jakove Hawkins said.
"I like coming here because they help me with my work, and they help me understand it better," 5th grader, Jamiya Daniels said.\
One thing kids also love about this program is the interaction with other students.
"When we get done with our work we get to help other kids understand it," Daniels said.
Organizers hope they can become positive role models in each of the student lives.
"Too many kids and people of color are incarcerated and haven't had the opportunity to do as well as they can," Sylvester said. "This is just a small step in that direction.
The program is offers free tutoring sessions on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4:00pm to 5:30pm at the Pinewood Park education center in Lufkin.
The nonprofit is seeking volunteers, anyone interested in volunteering can contact Sylvester at 936-526-3023 or Pamela at 936-414-3387.