At 75, Beverly Wilson has experienced significant life and health changes in the last 5 years and began to realize that she was becoming isolated and, often, lonely. Through a serendipitous serious of events, Beverly saw a half-page ad in the Oasis catalog about a tutoring program and, later, received an enticing email about the program. She thought it would give her an opportunity to interact with young people who are absent from her life and decided to respond to the email.
Attending workshops and participating in the tutoring program gave Beverly a connection to the larger Albuquerque community who shares her enthusiasm for reading and for learning. She was trained in the fall of 2017 for the tutoring program and then was assigned to read with William. Whether reading with him, selecting materials to work together with him, or using her bookbinding skills to encourage him, Beverly found all activities immensely rewarding. She has fun and says mentoring makes her happy!
Beverly is expanding her interactions with the world outside her home. She has recruited other volunteers to the program, and she shares her William stories with anyone who will listen. When they started, William was fearful of reading, and now Beverly hears he has a library card, frequently checks out books, and is thrilled to share the stories he reads. Although Beverly no longer sees William to mentor, he and his family have chosen to continue their friendship with her outside of the school setting.
Now, Beverly finds joy in working with Abby, a new student. Beverly continues to take Oasis classes, and she visits the elementary school weekly to mentor. She has also recently taken an interest in the Albuquerque School Board's activities. Life, Beverly says, is good!