Attorney Katie Wright to Support COCD in the Family Navigation Program
With the support of Attorney Katie Wright, Cross Over Community Development (COCD) has opened its Family Navigation Program to assist immigrants and refugees in the Greater Dayton Area. This Program will be open starting from December 15th, 2020, on every Tuesdays from 3:30PM to 6:30PM.
The program is free and will take place at 345 Wyoming ST, Dayton, OH 45410. No appointment is needed.
The walk-in program is coordinated by Attorney Katie Wright, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice at Wilmington College and previously an Adjunct Professor at The University of Dayton in 2019. With the support of interpreters, Katie will provide referrals to available community services and resources, including education, healthcare, legal services, advocacy and assistance to families adjusting to American culture.
UD and COCD are jointly promoting the initiative to mentor 100 refugee families. COCD and the UD professors have started laying the foundations of a structure that will help immigrants and refugees thrive and fully participate in the socio-economic life of their new home country.
Here are some of the projects currently underway and success achieved so far through this partnership between UD and COCD:
- Dr. Molly (Maureen) Keane-Sexton’s students are working on producing infographics on services available to refugees in the Miami Valley. Other students are tutoring math and English.
- Leslie King, the Director of Rivers Institute students’ 2020 cohort, has released an online children’s book, ‘Into the River,’ to inspire children’s literacy and educate local youth about the importance of rivers in the Greater Dayton Area. We plan on organization a Zoom reading event in which children will learn how to read. Also, the Karibu Project is a project intended to produce educational videos on the safe usage of home appliances and more. Other students are helping with designing and setting up education on urban gardening.
- COCD is currently working with the UD Department of Teacher Education and the UD Employment services to recruit teachers and staff for the ESL program.
- Due to the pandemic, COCD has moved its ESL program online. This sudden change caused us to lose many adult students because they have trouble accessing the online ESL program. As a result, we had to recruit new students. Once the COVID-19 pandemic is resolved, we plan to teach the adult students basic computer skills to help them access online classes in the future.
- From April through early November, younger students came to our ESL classes for 4 hours a day which is an impressive commitment. Professional teachers and college professors assisted the students, who have improved the language skills of our students. Since August, teachers started working with students on math skills. Five students above average on their SAT practice tests and were able to submit their application for college admission. This experience has inspired COCD to conduct college readiness and computer classes for adult students.
- COCD has noticed the there are many immigrants and refugees who cannot obtain U.S. citizenship due to the lack of English skills and civic education. With the help of UD Professor Erika Curran, we still start a culturally responsive program that will help many people pass the US naturalization test.