The REACH program is making important partners in the community. Celebrating the end of another year, the program hosted a reception with supporters in the school system and collaborators in the community.
The gathering commemorated a successful year for the seven REACH students Priscilla, Will, Katie, Ashley, Demi, Angel, and Joey, along with Zachary, a REACH graduate who works at Fayetteville City Hall.
REACH (Reaching Educational and Career Heights) is a program for students with developmental disabilities ages 18-21 that helps them get into the workforce and become independent and productive citizens.
Partnerships with different organizations like Fayetteville City Hall make it possible for REACH students to practice independence and self-discipline, and Fayetteville Mayor Ed Johnson called the team an integral part of City Hall.
“We are really invested in this program,” said Mayor Johnson. “This is the program that we value the most.”
City of Fayetteville Director of Community Development David Rast was among the many representatives who thanked the students for their hard work.
“I cannot tell you what a joy it has been to work with these students,” said Rast. “I cannot tell each of you how important you are to me, and how important you are to the city.”
Every Wednesday when they showed up to work, they did it with joy. He applauded their tremendous help digitizing decades worth a files, slicing a project expected to take years down into a couple of months.
“When you have a group that comes into City Hall with a smile on their face, that is having fun, and wants to help, it is a treasure,” Rast said. “You make my heart smile. That’s exactly what you do every time you walk through the door.”
Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Jonathan Patterson lauded the students as an inspiration.
“I’m proud of the work that you’ve done to improve your skills, your knowledge, and your employability on a daily basis.”
REACH is under the direct leadership of teacher Ivory Cloud and paraprofessionals Nancy Akin and Tina Bavaro.