Unspoken and Unaddressed Realities of Poverty

By N. Hamilton, M. Ed, MLS

HOUSTON – Most people are unaware that in the U.S., approximately 1 in 5 children under the age of 18 live in poverty, shouldering more than they should have to.  In Houston, this number is even greater.

Amidst our beautiful multi-million-dollar campus, one may forget that majority of Booker T. Washington High students are affected by poverty as well.  When walking down the halls; unfortunately, one can witness many of these unspoken realities.

The past few weeks in Houston has been unusually cold, and several students have been arriving to school without jackets.  Some students do not have any form of transportation, and many are too embarrassed to mention this to friends and teachers.  Several students do not have food in their homes and are also considered the bread winners and caretakers of the smaller children that reside in the home. Many have lost siblings, relatives, and friends to senseless shootings.  Let’s not forget about the basic needs that many of us take for granted like deodorant, tooth paste, feminine products, school supplies, and school uniforms; which are needed just to feel comfortable while attending school.

The Booker T. Washington staff refuses to ignore these problems and know we would do minority students a disservice if we were only concerned about their education in isolation.  Each staff member has been trained to address the social and emotional needs of every student on campus, but we have gone much further than that… We have hired our very own Communities- in- Schools Support Manager, Tanya Hulbert, who is on campus daily working directly with students. She has been blessed with one of the most caring, endearing, and authentic personalities.  When interviewing her, one can see how her kind spirit can put any individual at ease.  She has this unspoken empathy that supersedes the requirements of the job.


Tanya Hulbert of Communities-In-Schools, Inc. gives hope to students at Booker T. Washington High School.

Communities-in-Schools is one of the nation’s largest non-profit providers.  It works directly inside schools, building relationships that empower students to succeed inside and outside the classroom.  One of the organization’s guiding principles is understanding that, connectivity and genuine relationships can unlock a child’ full ability.

In less than five months, Mrs. Hulbert has met up with over 350 students and has provided majority of them with items such as uniforms, METRO bus passes, school supplies and backpacks.  She has also partnered with outside agencies to bring job fair information, attendance incentives and services to students in foster care.  Furthermore, she has provided support when students went into crisis mode after the shooting of a fellow student; she also provided an entire family with Christmas gifts via her Adopt a Family Initiative; but most importantly, she provides on-going mental health support on a daily basis when kids are in need.

At no point, does she feel sorry for our kids; instead she empowers them, listens to them and uplifts them during difficult moments in their lives.  So, let us hold her up in the light of humility and love for the selfless job of eliminating emotional and physical barriers in the lives of minority students on our campus.


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October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit www.edwardsforhouston.com

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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