What’s Working:Lee Family Learning Center

 {sounds of children laughing and playing”
The sounds of summer and sights of smiling faces are common place thanks to the work of the Lee Family Learning Center. “In the school year we offer after school hour, during the summer we have a full 8 week summer program.”
     Sherrie Whisnantis in her fourth year overseeing the program. “When I started we had about 6 people coming, now we are averaging 25 to 45 a day”
The lee family center began as a after school reading program 20 years ago, and literacy is still a center point of the program
“We work with the Kingsport city schools  I work with the liaison of the schools, if they tell me the student is not doing good in reading or math I can help them after school.”  
      It has blossomed into much so much more “We have a full computer lab upstairs.  Most of these children don’t have a computer at home so they can do their school work, projects, and typing lessons. During breaks we go on trips.”
    What these young people really need is someone to look up to. “We have a lot of children that really need a male role model to look up to.”
{sounds of Travis Sensabaugh playing with children}
      Travis Sensabaugh has spent nearly 2 decades working for the Park and Rec dept. And serving as that role model at Lee Family Center.
“when I was young I came to a program similar to this at VO Dobbins and I decided this is what I want to do”
      With strong leaders like Travis Sensabaugh, and vision and dedication of Sherrie Whisnant. The Lee Family Center will keep working for the young people of Kingsport  for years to come. “if they can have a place to come and not worry about mom and dad arguing, and know they will get something good to eat because Ms. Sherrie gives it to them, then that’s what keeps me going.”
      The Lee Family center is funded through A community development block grant. Another main contributor is Speedway Children’s Charities.  For more information on how to help the program  log onto Kingsport housing.org.   

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