August marks the beginning of the school year in Nashville and, for our family, that means implementing a schedule that involves being certain places at very specific times. 8 a.m. 8:55 a.m., 3 p.m. and 3:55 p.m.—those are the start and dismissal times for our elementary school and middle school-aged kids.
The beginning of the school year is also a really important time for Salama Urban Ministries, which has been helping Nashville’s youth since 1985. Today, it serves K-8 students during the school year and K-12 students during the summer, primarily in the Edgehill community, many of whom are Black and facing a variety of barriers that can make success a lot harder to come by.
While Salama does many things to support Nashville’s youth, their bread and butter is a wildly successful after-school program that features an academic curriculum, training in the arts, including music theory, dance, drama and visual arts, plus regular lessons in scripture, nutrition, fitness and more. Between the after-school program and their summer camp, Salama serves more than 100 students a year with 650 hours of this powerful programming.
And the result is nothing short of impressive. According to their 2019 impact report, 88% of Salama students demonstrated improvements in reading, 75% improved in math, and 90% of former students graduated high school and moved on to college or advanced education.
We chose Salama for our August 2022 Lawyers Give Back donation because Nashville’s Edgehill community is part of our community, too. Anthony Legal’s office is adjacent to the neighborhood primarily served by Salama, and our own children attend the same wonderful public school with some of the same kids served by Salama.
To learn more about Salama and how you can help, visit salamaserves.org.