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Climb CDC Family Enrichment Center hosts graduation ceremony

Despite losing one of their classmates to gun violence right outside the school, together they're showing they can still persevere.
Published: Jun. 17, 2022 at 7:32 PM CDT
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GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - On Friday, the Climb CDC Family Enrichment Center saw 10 students graduate from its retention program. Despite losing one of its students to gun violence right outside the school, students showed they can persevere.

Students took a lead of faith to an alternative educational route by joining Family Enrichment Center’s retention program.

Tears shed during the ceremony for the scholars considering they didn’t have the easiest path.

Jamiah Allen moved to Texas after experiencing tragic loss in her family. However, once she moved back, she said she didn’t have enough credits and would have to repeat 10th grade again.

“It was tiring. As soon as you open the computer you’re tired. But it was worth it and I’m proud that I did it,” said Allen.

However, Zytarious May said they couldn’t have done it without the staff being their solid backbone.

“They made sure that we had everything we needed. When I first came here, I felt at home. I felt normal. When I was at Biloxi, I didn’t feel nothing like this,” said May.

Although the program lost a student to gun violence by another one, the program helped students move forward by turning tragedy into triumph.

“Not only were those our classmates, those were also our friends. The guys that graduated today, I can see that they a future ahead of their self and I think that opened their eyes more,” said Allen.

Smiles and celebration filled the room with parents proud of their progress.

Allen’s mother, Charlotte Sims, said she congratulates each and every graduate to show gratitude for their hard work.

“it really takes a village to raise these kids. We need more involvement with these kids. You still have to be behind them. Just cause that’s not my child, still encourage that child. Let that next child know, ‘I’m proud of you too baby. Way to go with you, you,’ and you and not just for my child. That means a lot of kids,” said Sims.

Each graduate also received $100 from the Climb CDC.

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