May 2016 Message From Richard



It is the merry month of May - spring showers, flowers in bloom, prom night, and planning for summer activities. But for many families in under-served neighborhoods, May is the start of a worrisome season, as they wonder about what their kids will be doing for the summer.  Without access to learning opportunities during the summer months, children can lose academic progress and forget what they learned during the previous school year, a phenomenon more popularly known as “summer slide.” For many, summer time means lack of access to nutritious meals, mentors, and developmental supports.

This is why it is a busy season for us as we prepare to begin a new cycle of programming when students participate in six weeks of engaging, structured, and fun learning activities and experiences.

This year, our third at Pecan Springs Elementary, we’ll travel back in time to learn about the past and design our own future. We’ll build helicopters and solar cars and go from the Georgetown Airport to the Circuit of the Americas Race Track. And along the way, the children will gain the skills necessary to be prepared and ready for the new school year; healthier and more physically fit; able to set a goal and achieve it through persistence and perseverance; and a better friend and citizen of our community.

We are proud of what our students become because of the varied and comprehensive activities they experience - they develop new interests, discover inherent hidden talents, and make new friends.

In addition to the six-week summer learning program at Pecan Springs Elementary, we are also investing, for the first time,  in summer programs that are implemented by the Austin Parks and Recreation Department  at playgrounds across the city. We believe that by helping our public centers improve their quality and increase their offerings, we are indeed expanding opportunities for young people to learn, thrive, and succeed. 

But these learning opportunities become possible only through sustained support. This is where you come in. To say that we cannot do this without you is an understatement. Your contribution allows us to keep these programs free and available to children and families who otherwise may not have the chance to experience high-quality programs during summertime. 

Your support can transform this summer into a life-changing experience for child here in Austin.