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West Side Teacher to be Honored

Breakthrough Urban Ministries will dedicate its East Garfield Park afterschool program in honor of long-time Chicago teacher and community volunteer Nettie Bailey on August 27.

In East Garfield Park, “everyone knows who Mrs. Bailey is,” said Tawnya Patterson of Breakthrough. A teacher for 25 years at Beidler Elementary School, 3151 W. Walnut, she also tutored and taught Bible study classes for many years. “She still tutors, and her home is always open for kids and families,” and she helps parents with resumes and other challenges. On occasion, when local families faced hard times, she’s taken kids in to live with her and her family.

“Her home is like a safe haven — and everyone’s always out on the porch,” said Patterson.

Breakthrough operates shelters and employment training for homeless men and women, as well as afterschool tutoring and sports leagues for youth, family programs and an all-day preschool.

“When we got to know Mrs. Bailey and the way she’s lived her life” — and how her faith underlies her commitment to community service — “we thought she really reflects what our organization as a whole is trying to do,” said Patterson.

Breakthrough’s Joshua Center, 3330 W. Carroll, includes an afterschool program for junior high and high school students aimed at getting their reading up to grade level, as well as The Extra Mile, a college preparation and leadership program.

On August 27 the afterschool program will be formally named the Nettie Bailey Student Achievement Program in a 3:30 p.m. ceremony, with a reception with refreshments preceding the ceremony and an open house and tours of the facility for community members and supporters afterwards.

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Category: afterschool, CPS, Garfield Park

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