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After struggles, anxiety,
students finds joy,
friendship at Catholic school

Seeds of Hope changed the life of Emily Chamoun and her single mother, Jennifer, during the complex educational challenges of COVID-19. Like most students across the country, online school for Emily was a complete struggle. She was enrolled at a public school in California before moving to the Denver area. Her mom tried to assist her the best that she could while living on an annual salary of $21,000 and having to work during the day.

Emily eventually returned to the classroom in her public school, where she felt a difference in the school’s atmosphere. Unfortunately, it did not seem to be a kind or loving environment, and Emily became anxious and depressed. With too many children for teachers to manage, Jennifer, Emily’s mom, mentioned that “a lot of bullying occurred under the radar” which greatly affected her daughter. She noticed other changes and that Emily had become sad and resistant to learning. With an overwhelming situation, Jennifer cried every time she dropped Emily off at school as she had to go to work.

Once Jennifer enrolled Emily into St. Louis Catholic School this year with the help of Seeds of Hope, Emily’s attitude toward learning changed in six short weeks. The bright student is now engaged in school activities, and her confidence has dramatically increased. Her mother said she is grateful for the “kindness, love and compassion that are at the core of a faith-based education.”

The safety net of a Seeds of Hope scholarship gave this family a choice in education when their school environment had become a challenge. The school culture at St. Louis Catholic School provided the nurturing atmosphere needed and launched this family out of a difficult situation that had started with the COVID-19 pandemic. Jennifer said that “having the Seeds of Hope scholarship was the best gift”!

Through Seeds of Hope, families can choose a school that is best for their students. This ability to choose provides hope to low-income families who are struggling, and it provides a trajectory that allows children to flourish. Catholic schools have a proven record for changing students’ lives, and Seeds of Hope works to support every family that qualifies for tuition assistance within the Archdiocese of Denver.

Emily Chamoun