Latrese, an ABW Alumna, reflects on her time in the program

Latrese, an ABW Alumna, reflects on her time in the program

Being apart of A Better World After School Program and Christ Resurrection Church has taught me about myself. With help from the many volunteers I have developed a sense of giving back and appreciating all the love that was given to me at such an young age. When I first came to ABW I was only 7 years old and I did not know anything about myself or the world that surrounded me. ABW welcomed me with opened arms and loving hearts. While attending ABW I gained many friends and lost some as well.

I never thought I would be able to go outside of Charlotte, NC but ABW changed my perspective by allowing kids like myself to go on summer trips to different places. I have been able to vacation in Atlanta, Washington, Tennessee, Orlando, and much more. ABW also gives back by giving every kid in the program a Thanksgiving and a Christmas. ABW is not all about leaving the doors open but it is also about family. Family is everything to me and I am happy to say that I found myself in people God placed in my life.

I am now 19 years old and I can still say that ABW is my family and I will always love and support the foundation it stands on. I have been given lots of opportunities while attending ABW. I learned the value of giving back. I learned that you do not always have to receive anything in return. ABW is about giving families a place their kids can come to and know that they are safe. The function to keep kids off the streets involves giving them love that some of them may not always receive. I was able to accept life for what it is and not live in fear. ABW gave me the courage to speak up and not stand in the shadows behind other people. ABW is my love story that is still being written in my heart.

Latrese is a freshman at North Carolina Central University.