March/April '19 Update

Greetings from Lake Providence! 

As we welcome longer days and the beginning of spring, I'm grateful to report that the last few months have passed by with relative ease and productivity.

We've had a total of three students complete their GEDs, and we have several other students making fast progress toward the completion of their own.

I've also been assisting a number of students who are working hard to enter the Licensed Practical Nursing program in May. Again, I've had to dust off my algebra skills to help them increase their placement exam scores. They're making wonderful progress, despite their tutor's rusty skill set. 

I emphasize the LPN program because it’s one of the few career pathways out of poverty for people in our region. The local community college, which is underfunded and very small, only offers welding and LPN classes (in addition to GED courses). The next closest college or university is hours away, and many people still in Lake Providence would be first generation college students. It’s an incredibly hard lift to make it to and through a four year degree without a viable financial support network.

So, I believe strongly in supporting the nursing program in Lake Providence, in that it’s literally one of two pathways toward an income that’s not minimum wage… and there are actually jobs available in the area for folks who complete the program.

Additionally, we'll welcome back into town a research professor from Texas A&M University who has been working with TFH-LA and local residents, training us on the prevention of the spread of certain communicable diseases. They’ll take soil samples and, in the summer, return to take water samples so that we can be more clear on what’s present in this vital natural resources and how they affect our health.

Lastly, we look forward to a good two days of work projects in Lake Providence with our wonderful CBF-LA congregations in May. We look forward to seeing all who are able to attend!