ARDX Associates Encourage Students at Norfolk's Chesterfield Academy to Improve Reading Skills

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ARDX Associates worked with students at Chesterfield Academy in Norfolk, Virginia to improve their reading skills and encourage a brighter future. While the mentoring program wrapped up in June, ARDX's relationship with Chesterfield Academy continues.

ARDX Mentors at Chesterfield Academy

Every child needs someone who believes in them academically and appreciates their perspective

Each year, A. Reddix & Associates (ARDX) sponsors a local non-profit organization through donations of time and talent. Over the past few years, ARDX has sponsored programs with the Samaritan House, Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters (CHKD), Relay for Life, and the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia to name a few. This year, ARDX learned about an important need in our community and stepped up to help. ARDX made plans to work with the Life Enrichment Center (LEC) to mentor students at Chesterfield Academy in Norfolk, VA. LEC provides literacy tutoring to elementary students from Title I Schools in Norfolk who are reading below their grade level.

More than 50 ARDX Associates signed up immediately for the program. Each committed to work with one student for one hour per week throughout the academic year. The goal was to help these students become proficient readers by the end of the third grade. Students who are reading at or above their grade level by the end of the third grade are four times more likely to graduate from high school. Shannon Myer, a Director at ARDX says, “It has been refreshing seeing the ARDX organization prioritize the LEC mentorship program above all the 'busy-ness' of our day-to-day business. Knowing that almost half the individuals at ARDX, from the new hires to the executives, carve out time in their busy schedules every week to give back to a child illustrates ARDX’ values in action, and I’m so grateful to be a part of it.”

So far, the program has had an amazing impact on both the students and the mentors. Jumaane Dyson, ARDX CFO says, “Every child needs someone who believes in them academically and appreciates their perspective. The LEC program provides the platform to give encouragement to a young and vibrant child and create a lasting legacy. Personally, the LEC program has given me the opportunity to be an example. (My student) and I have developed a special bond and enjoy each other’s company. (He) is allowed to express himself, educationally and socially, which truly speaks to the development of building healthy relationships outside of the home.”

Reports from LEC were also positive. Kevin Turpin, founder and director of LEC says, “Working with ARDX employees during the 2014-15 academic school year has been a wonderful experience. ARDX helped the Life Enrichment Center of Norfolk fulfill its vision to partner with corporations to help children from low income communities become proficient readers by the end of the third grade. The reading scores of the children are steadily rising while the students become more confident as result of their relationship with literacy tutors from ARDX. Thank you ARDX for enriching the lives of children for a brighter tomorrow!”

As for the ARDX Associates, the opportunity to nurture students and help them to achieve has been so rewarding that some Associates plan to continue to donate their time even after the ARDX program has ended. Students graduated from the ARDX/LEC program on June 12th at Chesterfield Academy. Fifty students celebrated with their ARDX mentors. Mentors and students enjoyed lunch together and each student received a small gift to celebrate the end of the year.

This summer, ARDX START (Smart Teens Accepting Responsibility Today) interns raised money and provided fully stocked backpacks for 5th grade students entering the 2015-2016 school year. In addition to tutoring and providing backpacks for students, ARDX has also supplied Chesterfield Academy with a computer laboratory to facilitate learning. This contribution will continue to help Chesterfield students for years to come.

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Pam Cusick

Pam Cusick
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