Local Educator Teaches Young Girls the Importance of Sisterhood Elementary school teacher teaching young girls the importance of sisterhood

Teacher supporting girls who may be struggling to manage day to day obstacles

girls meeting in a room
Students participate in a activity during their weekly meeting.
© 2019 Alazia Williams

Third, fourth and fifth grade girls at McKinley-Brighton Elementary school on the Southside of Syracuse have something else to look forward to once week.

The Sisterhood Program is new to McKinley-Brighton this school year, and the program is designed to assist young girls to with deal with day to day issues, communicating and physical and mental health.

The program was founded by Ms. Deborah Pichardo-Kemp in partnership with students at Syracuse University. The program leaders are Ms. Clark, Ms. Pichardo-Kemp and Mariah Boreno.

Pichardo-Kemp said the purpose of the Sisterhood Program is to empower young girls to be all that they can be through education and community service.

The activities the girls participate in have ranged from a field trip to Brady Farm to learn about gardening and healthy eating, to writing thank you notes to someone who inspires them, to building gingerbread houses during their meetings.

The group has meetings every week to sit down and discuss their week, write in their journals, and take part in activities that focus on the importance of education and sisterhood.

Deborah Pichardo-Kemp: Your story might be the same as someone else. Cause if you look around we’re all different shades of brown.

REPORTER: Deborah Pichardo-Kemp is the founder of Sisterhood Program at McKinley-Brighton Elementary School. She meets with 4th and 5th grade girls at least once a week for sister time.

Deborah Pichardo-Kemp: Just a safe haven where you could come and talk about what you’re feeling you know

REPORTER: To the students she’s Ms. PK but to the girls she’s sister-mother

Deborah Pichardo-Kemp: not too in depth but just enough

REPORTER: But just enough to build a relationship and Ms. PK’s purpose is simple.

Deborah Pichardo-Kemp: To empower young girls to be all that they can be through education and through community service

REPORTER: Ms. PK has her own form of communication with each of her students, she has a way with the kids. But there is one little sister who holds a special place in her heart.

Deborah Pichardo-Kemp: Adeline is a very unique young lady

REPORTER: Adeline is 10 years old, she lives in a single parent home with 6 other siblings. In her house being the oldest comes with responsibilities.

Adeline English: Here I get to be a kid I get to play with my friends and stuff but at home it’s different because

REPORTER: …Because here you kind of have to be the adult….

Adeline: Yeah…

REPORTER: And with the help of Sisterhood Program Adeline never has to face her problems alone

Deborah Pichardo-Kemp: How many of you need help solving problems… I know I do

REPORTER: Each girl one of the girls has their own story and Sisterhood Program teaches the girls to love and care for one another, no matter the circumstance

CLASS: To uplift (To uplift) and hold (and hold) our sisters (our sisters)

REPORTER: In Syracuse, Alazia Williams NCC News

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