Recipients of H.E.L.P. grant honored

Posted July 14, 2009 8:30 p.m. EDT
Updated July 14, 2009 8:31 p.m. EDT

— Methodist Home for Children hosted its annual Hackley Education and Learning Program luncheon on Friday to honor the recipients of the agency’s H.E.L.P. grant, which is offered each year to qualified students who have successfully completed MHC programs and wish to pursue a post-secondary education.

Ebony, who began her relationship with MHC at the age of 12, said that at one point she had no desire to finish high school, much less pursue a college degree, but after much encouragement and support from MHC and her H.E.L.P. mentor, she decided to enroll at Johnston Community College.

“I didn’t want to finish school, but Mr. Deans has been behind me, looking out for me and pushing me to be better,” said Ebony, who is about to enter her second year as a criminal justice major.

Sean spoke of his experiences with MHC and how the H.E.L.P. program has opened doors for him, saying, “MHC has given me a new beginning, a new opportunity. Now I can see potential in the things I do and in myself.”

After graduation, Sean, who is currently studying social work at Johnson C. Smith University, hopes to return to MHC to work in the same multi-purpose home where he resided as a teen.

In 2005, the H.E.L.P. grant was titled in honor of Dr. Lloyd V. Hackley, for his commitment to improving the lives of young people and his leadership as MHC’s board president from 2002 to 2005.