March 31- Project Promise Mentoring Alliance students will volunteer for the Kinston's 8000 Run for the River race sponsored by Pride of Kinston.  Students will fill in a variety of roles including serving as cheerleaders for the runners as they travel the course through downtown Kinston and the Mitchelltown community.  The students will also attend the volunteer briefing and Welcome to the Race party at the Hampton Inn in Kinston on Friday, March 30.

April 11 - Our female participants and chaperones will visit North Carolina A&T University and Bennett College in Greensboro.

April 12 - Our male participants will visit North Carolina A&T State University and the International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Greensboro.

April 14 - Our students will participate in our Saturday Academy session that will focus on fitness and etiquette from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m.

April 21 - As part of Global Youth Service Day, our students will participate in a campus beautification project at Rochelle Middle School from 9:00 - 12:00.

April 21 - Our students will participate in a Youth Town Hall Meeting and lunch with elected officials and community leaders from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

April 28 - Our program participants will participate in the Pride of Kinston annual community Clean Up of downtown Kinston and surrounding communities from 9:00 a.m. until 12:30.  The students will be treated to a lunch after their service.

Weekly Mentoring Sessions
We continue to meet weekly with our Rochelle Middle School 7th grade students from 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday and Thursday.

We also meet with Rochelle Middle School sixth grade students for Kids2College program each Tuesday and Thursday from 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.
Happy Wednesday!

I am still so excited to have had the opportunity to attend the 2012 GradNation Summit in Washington, DC last week.  Our delegation came back energized and ready to take our GradNation Community and Promise Neighborhood efforts to the next level.

 While some of our colleagues attended the GradNation Summit, three of our team members, John Jones, Shon Bruinton and Larry Burney, Jr. attended the Collaborative Conference on Student Achievement in Greensboro from March 19-21. We remain thankful to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and the NC General Assembly's Committee of Dropout Prevention for the funding for the implementation of the Project Promise Mentoring Alliance here in Kinston.    

This past Sunday, I read a disturbing account of a shooting incident that took place near one of our partner schools.  The article stated that some of the students ran home in fear of getting shot.  This incident occurred near the Simon Bright Apartment complex which is in the heart of our Kinston Promise Neighborhood and actually my family's home when I was attending college.  And the fear that our kids experienced last week is one that I never experienced as a youngster when I used to wander carefree from one side of town to the other.   

The shooting incident last week and the unfortunate death of Trayvon Martin also reminded me of a conversation I had with one of our students when I asked him, "What do you want to be when you grow up?"  And his response began, "Well, Miss T, if I grow up...

Both incidents made me start to remember a document that I compiled two years ago when I invited local students to share their hopes and dreams for their community.  I have included those thoughts (unedited) for you to read, below in the article, "A Child's Dream."

Please pray for our children and their continued safety and their promising futures.

On Sunday evening, March 26, I received a wonderful Community Service Award from Delta Rho Zeta Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., during their 2012 Finer Womanhood Banquet.  My heartfelt thanks to this dynamic group of ladies who provided this public recognition for the work that is being done in Kinston Promise Neighborhood.

We are most appreciative of Ms. Joan Harris and Ms. Glinda Davis who volunteered with the Project Promise Mentoring Alliance this week.    

Theresa Williams-Bethea, CAP 
Kinston Promise Neighborhood Coordinator
Project Promise Mentoring Alliance Program Director
A couple of years ago, I invited Kinston children to share their hopes and dreams for our community.  Below I have compiled the student responses.

A Child's Dream
(submitted by Kinston Promise Neighborhood children)  

My dream is to grow old. To also grow to be bold. Living life to the fullest, With many adventures untold.

My dream is that people will not have to go to war. I just can't bear the fact that everyday someone dies. I just wish that they would stop all wars for once and for all.

I would like for my family to be happy and successful.

My dream is that the world would be perfect.  

There will be no violence. There will be a cure for every disease. The economy will not be bad.

My dream is that there will be no more guns.  

That there will be peace.

I have a dream that people would get better jobs and keep them.

I have a dream that people in different countries will have food to eat.

I have a dream that whites and blacks will stay united.

I have a dream that in places like Russia, there shall be only one ruler and that is God.

I have a dream that we can have a better community, and that people will stop killing, stealing, and littering.

I dream that people would realize that guns shouldn't be used for stupid things such as robbery.

I wish that people would not think they are powerful just because they have a gun.

I wish that people would be willing to sit down and work out their problems.  

My dream for the community is for us to get along and help one another.  

I have a dream for a perfect world. To me a perfect world is peace on earth. People ask why. Well today in life there are gangs and shoot-outs. But both of these things leads you to one thing and that's death.

Shootouts are terrifying. They are about nothing. I personally think that gangs are horrible and they need to be stopped.

My dream is to help the people that need help because it is sad sometimes when I ride by in the car and I look on the streets, I see people that need help with their lives. Some of them have not eaten in days and have no where to stay. My aunts and I take can goods to the needy families that need food. People all around the world need help.

I would like to provide for others like they used to say, if you do good to others, good things happen to you.

My dream is that I want to be able to help the needy when I grow up.

I believe that we should talk to teens so that they do not make mistakes with their life.

I dream that one day children can go out and play outside without being scared.

I have a dream that many kids wouldn't have to be on the street. They could be in a kid development center so they can learn more.

My dream is that many high school dropouts would change their minds and go back to school and learn more.

My dream is that there should be a school for many pregnant teens so they can learn to better their lives.

I have a dream that everyone can live in a safe neighborhood.  

I have a dream that everybody get a chance to graduate from college.

I have a dream that young people would stop getting in gangs because they want to fit in.

I have a dream that people would stop drinking and driving.

I have a dream that people would learn how to forgive people.

I have a dream that people would learn how to love one another.

I have a dream that people would stop getting diseases.

I have a dream that people will try to stop using drugs because they are depressed.

I have a dream that children in our country would stop fighting.

My dream is that we do not judge people by the way they look.

I want people to be able to help those that have no food to eat and help those little kids who have to take care of their little brothers and sisters.

I want to try to help the children in Africa who are hungry.

I just want to help the world and make it a better place to live.

            I always dream of being successful and not struggling like I see my mother and grandmother doing. I learned to dream big from my mother and grandmother.

I have a dream that a young black African American woman can grow up and become President of the United States.
We are excited about the new year and all the opportunities that will be
provided in Kinston Promise Neighborhood.  We are trying to keep up with the
latest communication and social networking opportunities and invite you to join
us along our journey.

First of all we are currently publishing a weekly e-newsletter through Constant Contact entitled,
"Wonderful Wednesday.  We are sharing information submitted by our KPN team and
member agencies about activities happening through Kinston, with a special focus
on programs generated out of Kinston Promise Neighborhod.  Each issue of
Wonderful Wednesday is posted to our Facebook page.

We have a facebook page ( and a Twitter

We encourage you to join both pages and keep up with our activities.
We are excited that a team of five from Kinston will be attending the upcoming
Grad Nation Summit planned for March 18-21 in Washington, DC.  Kinston Promise
Neighborhood has been designated a Grad Nation community by America's Promise
Alliance.  We will be provided with numerous opportunities to network with other
communities who have made a commitment to help lower the dropout rate in our
respective communiities.

Individuals travelling from Kinston to Washington, DC include Theresa Williams-Bethea, KPN Coordinator;
Tristan Bruner, Partnership for Children; Melissa Bailey and Rachel Wright: 
Lenoir County Public Schools Migrant Education Program and Jackie Clark, a
parent and volunteer at Southeast Elementary School.
Start blogging by creating a new post. You can edit or delete me by clicking under the comments. You can also customize your sidebar by dragging in elements from the top bar.