Your support makes a difference for families like Carmelina’s!
For Carmelina, being a mom to 1-year-old Annabel and 2-year-old Abel was often stressful and challenging. When Abel threw tantrums in public, her role got even harder. Carmelina struggled with her son’s aggressive behavior and the impact it was having on her marriage. As recent immigrants from Nicaragua, her family lived in a high poverty neighborhood in the Austin area. Carmelina desperately wanted a better life for her children, but couldn’t give them the support they needed. One day at a local supermarket, Carmelina was at the right place at the right time when she met an AVANCE parent educator. There she learned about AVANCE’s Parent-Child Education Program and started her family’s journey to a brighter future.
Our intensive, nine-month program puts the whole family on the path to success through a dual-generation approach with parents in one classroom and their children ages 0-3 in another. Carmelina received the education, coaching, and tools she needed to become her children’s first and best teacher. Annabel and Abel got prepared for school, increasing their chances of graduating from high school and continuing to higher education and better paying jobs than the generation before them.
AVANCE-Austin works to close the opportunity gap for low-income, Spanish-speaking families in our community by starting when their children are very young. This early intervention changed everything for Carmelina’s family.
Although Carmelina was at first apprehensive to start the 9-month program with her children, she soon embraced her family’s new routine and looked forward to class every week. Abel, however, not speaking yet and still had a difficult time at home. A free screening given by one of our community partners determined that Abel had developmental delays. He was referred to a speech therapy program, which helped him communicate better. Their situation improved even more once they started participating in our free, home-based Positive Parenting Program sessions. Through one-on-one support with a trained home educator, Carmelina and her husband learned how to work together to handle their son’s behavior in a healthy and loving way.
To express her gratitude to the AVANCE community, her husband and she requested to perform a beautiful dance during the program graduation ceremony in May.
In her words, “AVANCE changed my life and saved my marriage.”
This is the kind of life-transforming work you make possible when you support AVANCE.
Like other services, AVANCE will not be with the family forever. But the parenting skills, the lifelong passion for learning, and the confidence to be an engaged parent will produce lasting effects for both parent and child. We celebrate Carmelina’s success at AVANCE, but we know there are more parents and very young children who need similar kinds of support to strengthen their families and communities.
During this season of giving, will you help make futures bright for more children like Annabel and Abel?
Please support AVANCE-Austin as generously as you can by making your year-end, tax-deductible donation by December 31. You’ll be helping to change the course of an entire family in the year ahead.
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