When 13-year-old Celestina Ackon was discovered by Pockets of Promise, she was doing extremely poorly in school, and nobody could understand why. Despite being a bright young girl who loved to learn, she constantly struggled to keep up with her peers in all of her subjects. On top of her struggles at school, her current living conditions only added to the problems she already had. Her parents earned their living by smoking and selling fish, and thus were not financially capable of assisting Celestina in her school work or getting her extra help outside of school. In spite of her many difficulties, Celestina was very passionate about her studies and loved going to school to soak up all the knowledge that she could.
Pockets of Promise came to know of Celestina through their after-school program. They immediately put in the effort to find the root of Celestina’s problems with school. They quickly discovered that Celestina struggled to read and write well, which affected the rest of her subjects at school, as they all contained some element of reading and writing.
When Celestina first started at the program, she was not able to identify some of the letters of the alphabet. Additionally, she was poor at phonics and was not able to discern the sounds that most of the letters made. To help her improve, Pockets of Promise put her in the Hooked-on-Phonics program, which taught her the alphabet and the correct sounds of each of the letters. This greatly helped Celestine master her reading skills.
On top of that, Pockets of Promise also aided in improving Celestine’s living conditions to give her a better environment at home to study. Celestina and her 10-year-old sibling now live with their grandmother, which offers her a quiet and secure place where she can better prepare for school.
Celestina had been steadily improving in her studies since Pockets of Promise began to assist her. Now, she can fluently read books up to level three (3rd-grade level). Additionally, she has improved greatly in school, and can finally showcase her passion for the subjects she is studying. Celestina is very grateful for all the aid and wants to pay it forward- she wants to become a doctor in the future so that she can help other people the way that she was helped.