Local News

Two Founders Of Wake Afterschool Program Retiring

Posted May 28, 2004

— Loaves and Fishes is a biblical story, but it is also the name of an after-school program in Wake County. Two women sacrificed their careers to start it and years to run it, but now they are retiring.

Nancy Newell and Betty Anne Ford are the founders of

Loaves and Fishes

. For 22 years, they have kept a full plate.

"We wanted a name that would remind us that we're not here to save the world, but we are here to do our little part to make a difference," Ford said.

If not for the center, some Wake County kids might be hanging on by a string. At the center, they are taught social skills and academics.

"You just know when you're doing something that's being effective," Ford said.

"I think for everybody, it makes some difference," Newell said.

Ford and Newell said they had a vision and path to help the kids to achieve their goals.

"We never give up on a child. The moral of the story is to never give up," Ford said.

"Well, we have a girl graduating from high school and going to college this year. That's a very exciting thing. She's the first person in her family to do that," Newell said. "They're great kids. They're the future."

Loaves and Fishes will continue on without its founders. Since it began in 1982, the program has helped hundreds of children. It is funded through grants and donations and heavily relies on volunteers.

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