“I started living when I started working here.”

“This is my 32nd year with Head Start. First, I was a parent volunteer. I had two children who attended United Children and Family Head Start. At that time, in 1985, there were lots of people coming from Iraq who needed someone to translate for them. During my first year as a Head Start employee, I helped the children to learn and adapt to the classroom. I also translated the language for non-English speaking parents and assisted them with adjusting to the American lifestyle. I started living when I started working here. It opened my mind. I saw the world and how I could help, be important and do something that makes a difference. It changed my life completely.

I had received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Iraq. While at UCFHS, I received my CDA and later the agency awarded me a tuition grant to attend Macomb Community College to get a two-year associate degree in child development.

I just finished the Core Advantage online training and started the Numbers Plus training. Along with my co-workers, I have continued ways to help the children. I have even learned how to how to handle certain situations with my own children.

Head Start makes a huge difference in children’s lives—and their families’. It helps them economically, socially and with self-esteem. Families get to work with each other. I’ve seen it. We encourage parents to go to school, to work with their children and solve problems within their own family. We visit them.

The most rewarding part of my job is to care for the youngest of children that come to us – see much they have learned and how much love they have received from us. It’s great to see them happy.”

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