Reflecting on 25 Years
Click here to view the new HOLA video that includes interviews with many of HOLA’s earliest alums.
Today, the neighborhood is still pretty rough and HOLA youth still need a safe place to hang out. When I speak with our current students, many express the same sentiment as the older alums: “HOLA is like my second home.” It makes me extremely proud that for 25 years we have been providing a safe and supportive environment to underserved kids living in the inner-city. But, as I reflect and look forward, I am awed and inspired by how far we have come. Today, we are so much more. Every kid that walks through our doors knows that they will get the individualized attention and support they need to finish high school AND graduate from college! In a neighborhood where high school graduation rates hover around 50%, HOLA’s high school seniors ALL graduate from high school and over 95% go on to college. We have over 200 alumni currently enrolled in more than 75 colleges and universities around the country. Not only are these kids going to college, they are matriculating through and graduating at rates significantly the average. Since 2009, 90% of HOLA alumni have either graduated or are persisting through college. Many of these graduates come back to our community to give back and pay it forward. It is with great pride that we have been able to hire several HOLA alumni to fill positions on our staff. What they have to share with our youth is immeasurable.
Twenty-five years is quite a milestone. Thank you for being a part of it and stay tuned for exciting plans to expand our campus that will propel us into an even bigger and better future.