As she walks into the Breakthrough FamilyPlex on a Wednesday afternoon, students excitedly gather around Whitney, a local middle school teacher. It was her students who introduced her to Breakthrough when she was looking for an after-school program for her daughter, Hartlyn.

“I came down and visited and signed up on the spot,” Whitney says. In the four years her daughter has been a part of the Nettie Bailey Student Achievement Program, which provides academic enrichment for students K-8, Whitney said Breakthrough has become like family.

“If it wasn’t for the love and support of the Breakthrough family life for me as a single mother would be much harder,” she says. “The additional help the staff offers us and the abundance of love we are always showered with has really given us an extended family from God. It’s because of Breakthrough and her school that she is growing into the young lady that I’m blessed to have as a daughter.”

Celebrating the Inspiring Impact of Moms

As Breakthrough experiences the joy of partnering with parents as students grow from preschool to post-secondary and beyond, we know that moms like Whitney are a powerful force for good. This Mother’s Day, we honor the inspiring impact her love and support has in our community.

Ana Pyper, Director of the Nettie Bailey Student Achievement Program, said she wanted to highlight Whitney this Mother’s Day because she is an amazing mother, community advocate, and friend.

I see the ways that she mothers everyone’s children as a teacher,” Ana says. “She checks in on them even after they’ve graduated and every student runs in for a hug when she comes to pick Hartlyn up from the after school program. She has great connections with other parents, and is a trusted individual in the community because of the ways that she engages with youth and families.”

Fourth-grader Hartlyn lights up when her mom walks in. Among the many things she loves about her, Hartlyn said she’s thankful to have a nice mom who takes care of her.

“She deserves to be honored every day, but especially on Mother’s Day as she exemplifies strength, grace, and joy in motherhood,” Ana says.