Little Sister Nevaeh & Big Sister Carla
“I am enjoying my time with Little Sister Nevaeh. I have seen great growth in her!” – Big Sister Carla
Nevaeh always enjoyed reading but found it difficult. She really wanted to succeed in school but needed some help and encouragement. To get her some help with school and encouragement in her self-esteem, Nevaeh’s mother enrolled her with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
In January of 2016, Nevaeh met Carla – and they got along instantly. Carla recalls, “The second time I saw Nevaeh; she gave me a big hug. Now, she always gives me a hug. She is opening up more and we have nice conversations together.”
Nevaeh described their time similarly saying, “I really like Carla because she is nice, fun, a good listener and because she reads to me. I feel happy when I’m with Carla and close to her. She’s cute. Carla talks to me while I eat my lunch.”
Every week, Carla would visit Nevaeh for lunch and the two would always read and sometimes play a game or just sit and talk. “Spending time with Nevaeh is giving her the opportunity to grow – I really enjoy spending time together,” Carla said. “I make sure we read. She said she’s struggling with reading so we do that every time. I give her books to take home and put her name in, keep in her book bag and that way we can read them together. She doesn’t have any certain thing she likes to read about necessarily, so we read a variety of things.”
Neveah enjoyed their reading time as well; she says, “She helps me know how to read big words and little words. We read a lot. We both take turns reading. I like picking a prize afterward. Carla even gave me Legos to keep.” With Carla’s help, Nevaeh’s reading ability greatly improved; she loves to read and even got an A in reading this past year. In talking about her education, Nevaeh said, “I’m sure that I will finish high school and college.”
Along the journey of developing Nevaeh’s reading skills, Carla made Nevaeh feel valued and heard. Throughout their lunches, Carla continued to encourage Nevaeh not just in her reading abilities but also in her self-confidence. She explains, “Nevaeh is very shy and soft-spoken. We work on building her self-confidence in meeting new people, talking to adults, and asking teachers for help when she doesn’t understand something. I want to do so much more, but I’m limited to what we can do in an hour. Still, Nevaeh’s self-esteem has been improving greatly!”
Though she started shy and reserved, Nevaeh warmed up to Carla and became very talkative. Carla recalls, “Nevaeh used to be very shy and quiet but is less so today. Nevaeh is very talkative when I meet with her. She is a chatterbox! She talks about her home life and school.”
When she discovered Nevaeh’s love of singing, Carla encouraged the passion by showing Nevaeh inspiring videos of young singers and encouraging her to begin singing at home to improve while gaining confidence. Thanks to these encouraging exchanges, Nevaeh gained the confidence to try new things. She even tried out for the basketball team and made it! According to Carla, “Nevaeh is playing basketball now! We had been working on her confidence so I was excited to hear that she went out for the team! I even go to basketball games at the school.”
As Nevaeh nears middle school, she is set up for success both academically, socially, and emotionally thanks to Carla’s investment in her life. Carla is just as thankful for their time together; “it is a joy spending time with Nevaeh. She is a good girl and fun to be with and is also one of the politest kids that I know — I think Nevaeh is one of the best kids I’ve ever known!”
According to Nevaeh, “Carla is like a friend and a sister because she does everything with me. She is nice and we get to do stuff and she helps me with homework. I’m grateful to Carla. I wouldn’t change a thing about my Match with her!”
Are you interested in becoming a Defender of Potential like Carla? Click on the links below to get involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters today!