Harvey Starting After-School Haven for Success
Last updated 8/27/2019 at 4:53pm
Patricia Harvey is creating a Haven for Success, an after-school program that helps children reach their greatest potential.
Harvey's new program will serve 20-25 elementary age children three hours a day beginning Aug. 19 at the B Street Community Center at 230 B Street in Lake Wales.
"I want these children to know and understand life is what you make it," Harvey said. "Life is not standing on the street corner. Life is not walking around with your pants below your behind. We need values back into the school system and instilled into the children."
Harvey holds child care certification and is a former Boys and Girls Club director with a passion for helping children succeed.
"My passion for this is I see children who have potential that is undeveloped," Harvey said. "I want to be that niche that helps develop children to their greatest potential."
In addition to its priority of homework assistance, Haven for Success will offer music, art, chess and tennis, eventually coordinating tournaments. Since the program doesn't offer transportation she expects most of the children to come from the neighborhood, probably Janie Howard Wilson and Spook Hill elementary schools.
"Our main goal is homework assistance and it doesn't matter how long it takes them with the homework. We're going to work with them as long as it takes them to get it," Harvey said.
The Haven for Success also plans quarterly community projects. The children will participate with the Lake Wales Police Department's Shop with a Cop program at Christmas and will do a bookbag drive at mid-term in January. Children and adults will give back, probably in March, through a Paint the Town program, where they help the elderly with painting, home repairs and lawn care. Harvey plans to work with local church pastors to identify people in need.
Harvey also offers the children her positive spirit and strong motivation: "I'm a firm believer you can do anything you put your mind to – anything. I don't care what it is, you can do it. And you can be the very best at it. You just have to keep working."
People interested in helping can drop off school supplies, snacks or cash donations for the program at the B Street Community Center. The program cost will be $25 per week, so Harvey needs support for families that can't afford it. In addition to the B Street Center, her main support so far is coming from her church, New Divine Church of God by Faith and its pastors, Alonzo and Kimberly Smith.
"My greatest need right now is funding. I want to make sure that whoever walks through that door that they don't walk out the way they walked in," said Harvey, who can be reached by calling 863-215-2912.