Special Educator/Head Start Alumni Parent
“One day we had a workshop for parents and the workshop was at the local library for the parents to tell us how to read. And the lady asked me can you read something and explain it and I couldn’t do that I was so nervous and so confused that I asked myself I have a BA from India this is not who I am I have to learn something, to do something. So from that day they provided a program for the parents ESL. I joined the program ESL and from there they said okay you are good for ESL go to community college. I went to community college, they said ok you have a BA why don’t you start university now. I went to university. In the meantime I’m getting support from my head start people. Teachers and family workers are saying ‘okay we can guide you go ahead do it, try.’ From university I had one semester undergrad and my professor said why don’t you try the master’s program and after one semester I was in the master program.
I never thought that after all that happened in 6 or 7 months, all these dramatic things and staying home for years… jumping into the master’s program... it was challenging and difficult but experience I got . Working here as a volunteer, working as a sub, working as a Teachers assistant when I was doing my studies… all those experiences, my experience, I put into my masters and I graduated last year with a masters in teaching. Presently I’m doing translations for NY state bilingual dept. I’m also authorized to work for NY early intervention dept. as a child development specialist. So thank you head start. Every step I got help from work and the main thing is I was working so I could afford my studies. Slowly saving from here and spending on school. Many things happened many ups and downs happened. I lost my parents within two years…. I was about to leave my studies and my job but I got support from my head start people, Miss Zukay was with me my family worker with me ‘okay whatever you need we are here. You need help in study? You need help in wherever. You want go? Okay. You come back? We are here. I always share my stories because this is our story. Our story of struggle and our story of success.“
VIEW OTHER TESTIMONIALS
"When I came from my foreign country the program was very helpful for my children to start socializing..."
"I’ve been with Head Start around two years now. I have one child who has already graduated into..."
"He’s learning a lot of English. At home we only speak to him in Spanish and now he speaks more English..."
"The programs they give here are so nice. Mainly those they give for the children and the parents..."
"I’m happy because they care about the kids… I love how they teach my son I’ve come across people..."
"It benefits me in many ways. I can go food shopping and I can go to school, I can even take classes here..."
"As a young parent I feel like everything stopped and I didn’t know what I was getting myself into..."
"The instant I got here they took me in like family. If they can’t help you in one way, they’ll find where..."
"The program helps me to spend more time with my kids, also to do activities inside and outside..."
"By the time my grandson went to kindergarten he was ready for kindergarten, he knew his letters..."
Greater Bergen’s Head Start program provides free early childhood education and family services to low-income families in Bergen County, Jersey City and Paterson, NJ. Comprehensive services and resources prepare children for kindergarten, enhance their emotional and physical well-being, and foster stable family relationships.
Bergen County Head Start
263 Lafayette Avenue
Cliffside Park NJ 07010
Jersey City Head Start
93 Nelson Avenue
Jersey City, NJ 07307
Paterson Head Start
500 E 35th Street
Paterson, NJ 07504