Impact the 37% homeless youth at our local elementary school through resources and relationships

The Well CDC exists to encourage worth, value, and dignity back into the communities of Akron.

We serve a disinvested neighborhood in Akron, Ohio. Our local elementary school is 100% free and reduced lunch and 37% of the school is considered homeless. Other community issues include unemployment, low graduation rates, low household income (average $27,478), 25% home ownership, blighted homes, and a slumlord culture that takes advantage of low-income renters. Many of the students have unstable housing, causing high levels of transiency that create challenges for all involved—the families, students and school staff. Our goal is to build relationships with and provide resources for those impacted by the harsh realities of homelessness and inequality in an effort to support increased stability. This will be accomplished through community engagement within our local elementary school, offering in-school support and connection to our healthy and affordable rental opportunities.

$25,000 would provide us the opportunity to invest deeper in our local elementary school with programming that connects us to teachers, students, and families. Our programs are planned intentionally with school staff, centered around relationships with all those involved, and allow us to meet unmet needs. Examples include in-class tutoring for 3rd and 4th graders at two elementary schools that support reading and digital literacy to increase state testing scores; and events to increase parental involvement. To address the issues of homelessness, we will introduce a basic needs closet where students can receive clean uniforms, underwear, toiletries, and snacks. Additionally, we will provide connection to healthy rental opportunities through our efforts to rehab blighted properties in the neighborhood. Homes are both affordable and renovated to quality for the community. Wrap-around social services are provided by a partnered organization to support the family once in the home.

Akron Hope’s programs at the local elementary school directly engage the community through in-classroom tutoring, holiday gift giving, parental engagement activities, and a basic needs closet. We will see long-term impact through intentional relationships becoming a pipeline to move homeless and low-income families towards stability with healthy and affordable rental opportunities. With a stable environment and reduction in the rate of transiency, we will decrease the staggering number of 37% homeless children at our local elementary school. Past impact: In-Class Tutoring: 2 Schools; 100+ students yearly; 1,600+ volunteers hours invested; 100% of partnered students have meet their reading goal score. Holiday Gift Giving: Every student receives a new and wrapped gift hand delivered by volunteers. 4 schools; 3,000+ students; 120+ teachers; 1,900+ volunteers over 4 years. Parent Engagement Events: 2,000+ students yearly.