Written by Janae Babineaux, proud AmeriCorps member serving on the Albemarle Foundation team at Merrydale Elementary School.

Saying goodbye is never easy; especially with 10 months of fond memories filling our hearts and minds. We’ve learned, we’ve laughed, we’ve loved, and as our City Year journey comes down its final stretch, we know this goodbye does not signal an end. It will allow us to move forward with the tools we’ve sharpened over this year and continue building a better community, nation and world for us all.

We also know that this year would not have been possible without our amazing sponsors. For the team at Merrydale, we are forever grateful for the Albemarle Foundation. They made it possible to devote this year of our lives to the Merrydale family. We came together and each corps member chose a student to collaborate with and write a letter. This was a time where we were able to sit with our students and take a retrospective look at our year.

Each student thanked the Albemarle Foundation and shared why they were thankful for having City Year in their schools.

“In my opinion, City Year is helpful because every time you need them they’re always there. They helped me in Math, ELA, Social Studies, and Science when I had trouble. Also, they’re fun to hang with, they sing songs in the morning when you come to school and give you high-fives. Then when you’re upset or crying they always make you feel better.

From City Year, I learned to never give up and keep trying. This year I learned how to annotate and in math I learned how to divide big numbers. City Year has taught me to do my best these past two years.”


-Chrislyn, 5th grade (with corps member Kimberly Ratte)

“Thank you for having City Year at my school. City Years are good and fun people. If I need help the City Years are right by me. The City Year would be number 1 on my list.”

 –X’zavia, 4th grade (with corps member Kimberly Peterson)

“Thank you for helping put City Year in our school. City Year always helps us with our classwork and they know how to have fun too!”


-Darlacia, 3rd grade (with corps member Zach Smith)

“I like City Year because they will help you understand about your work. They will take you out to work. Also, they will help you and pull your grades up. Thank you for bringing City Year to my school and also I am in the 4th grade.”

-Aniah, 4th grade (with corps member Cassidy Bowers)

“City Year helps us get our education. They help us with our work and take us for intervention. They let us have fun with them.”

Your best friend,

-Jakirani, 3rd grade (with corps member Silas Miller) 

“The City Years at Merrydale are very fun and cool. They sing songs and give us high-fives. They are also silly. They dance in front of the whole school… Without City Year I would be struggling. I would also be mad because I would not have Girls on the Run. School would be less fun.

Thank you for sending City Year to my school!”

-Letrevia, 4th grade (with corps member Amber Curry)

“My school, family, and friends are very grateful because of your donation to City Year. Without City Year, my school wouldn’t have all the things we have now.”

-Antonecia, 5th grade (with corps member Tavidee Hoskins)

“Thank you for the blessing City Year, for the opportunity of a good education, and for us to make it out of the 5th grade. Ms. Janae tells me things I have never known, Ms. Kim gives me good advice, and Mr. T gives me a man-to-man conversation. Thank you for all you have done for other students at Merrydale Elementary.”

-Terreon, 5th grade (with corps member Janae Babineaux)

Share This Page