Back to My Referrals
Date of Birth:
58 Branch Turnpike #9
Guardian/Family Email Address:
How many live in the household?
How many work and/or provide income to support the household?
Chriss lives with his mom, his older sister (6th grade) and two younger siblings- a toddler and a baby born last spring. His dad, who was living in Texas, moved back in with the family last July, and then died two weeks later from liver failure. His mother is overwhelmed with caring for her own two little ones and also for her sisters child, and the older kids are frequently with and aunt or uncle, and not well supervised.
Organizations / Mentor Programs:
None at this time.
No. Chriss tested out of the ELL program as a third grader, which is unusual for boy who's parents are not English speakers. Academics have come easily to Chriss.
Victim of Sexual Abuse:
Perpetrator of Sexual Abuse:
Victim of Physical Abuse:
Threatening or Aggressive Behavior:
No. Chriss is not always nice to peers. He is very competitive, and has been known to tell others that they're dumb, or to make the kinds of comparisons that are hurtful (eg "You're still reading books like that? I read those when I was in second grade..."
Required Physical Restraint:
Personality / Social Standing:
Chriss is extroverted and can be a leader, but again, can be hurtful verbally. He's energetic, athletic and in need of a focus for this energy. Chriss needs a challenge, and he desperately needs opportunities to get out of his immediate family/neighborhood and have the chance to be in a structured environment with positive role models. As the second oldest in a struggling family, both Chriss and his older sister have had some additional responsibilities, but the impression that I get (mostly from the older sister) is that Chriss is better able to shirk them. In part, it seems like life at home is chaotic, babysitting arrangements are usually in a state of flux, sometimes the kids are with an aunt and uncle and sometimes at home, and Chriss is the one more likely to exit and go out to ride his bike or hang out with friends. While Chriss is a very capable student in class, he has been unreliable about home work during our hybrid school year-- but again, some of this is simply lack of routines in a very busy house with a poor internet connection and no supervision.
Chriss can be very personable. Last year in third grade he made a very positive impression on his teacher (who was very tall and imposing, and I think this was a good fit for Chriss.) Chriss is very much an alpha male, and he can be a positive leader. He is quick witted and eager to learn, and likes to be challenged physically and intellectually. BUT, this past year has been particularly hard for him-- he's the kind of kid who relies on school routines as the only constant in life, and these have been disrupted. During the summer, he lost his dad, and while both of the older children seemed to bear this news with little emotion, we were dealing with their news over a zoom screen. Chriss is not a boy that shows a lot of emotion, and I'm not sure if introspection is part of his repertoire. More than anything else, I think he needs a break from home and opportunity to be challenged-- cognitively, physically , socially and emotionally. I have no doubt that there's a compassionate boy in there, but he needs to have his awareness of the needs and feelings of other children sharpened, as he also needs to have the opportunity to explore and acknowledge his own feelings-- both the proud ones and the painful ones.
Chriss is a strong candidate because he is LONGING to go to camp. He is a very bright, active, restless 10 year old boy who has so much potential, put there's a dangerous dynamic of big ego and nowhere to go, nothing to do, scant supervision and a dearth of local opportunity for him. Chriss knows that learning comes easily to him, but what to do with that? Create a new identity and see if you can get past the Concord School District Website safegaurds and use your school chromebook for gaming? Tried and failed earlier in the school year-- but three weeks without technology, on a lake, with positive role models, challenging situations, obstacles to overcome that would spur emotional growth--- that would be a lifeline for this boy. He is coming from a situation of loss and confusion where I doubt he gets his needs for nurturance or even positive daily structure met, and still he shows up for school, learns with ease, and hasn't presented with behaviors other than the tendency to belittle some of his peers, and a Me First ethic (Give me one of those! How come he got that and I didn't?) that are probably his way to shore up his own internal pain. Chriss has only been a student of mine in our afterschool program (last year) but I'm in close communication with his teacher. His sister, who I had as an ELL student, had my phone number. Chriss called my phone the other day and said, "Can you please see if you can get me into Camp Mayhew". Clearly, he's heard about your program through the grapevine, and he's a self advocate. Why I hadn't thought of him earlier, I don't know-- I think he'd thrive in your program and it can be the intervention he needs to get to a better place emotionally. I know this is my third referral, and I want ALL three boys (Bibas Darjee, Kevin Mbonimpa and now Chriss) to be taking the boat across your lake this summer. Each one I recommend without reservation-- I have no concerns about aggressive or defiant behavior with any of the three. So I'm just going to be keeping my fingers crossed that magically, all three boys can find a spot there for your program. Let me know what I can do to help with communication. Chriss' mom speaks fair English and uses Whatsapp -- I find this is the best way to reach her. If you type in your message and she doesn't understand it, she can get the Swahili translation. The extended family -- aunts, uncles- are also English speakers.