December 21, 2021 Category: Our Programs Meet Fresh Air

Meet Ibraheem and Pritika

When The Fresh Air Fund opens its virtual tutoring room promptly at 6:30 pm, students and tutors start to log on flooding the chat with “Hello,” “Good Evening” and “Hi everyone.”  

To continue to support our students during the pandemic, The Fund’s tutoring program transitioned from in-person to a virtual program – connecting volunteer tutors with students for ongoing academic support and mentorship.  

Volunteer tutor, Pritika, is originally from North Carolina and currently attending Nova Southeastern University studying biology. She was looking for a way to connect and volunteer during her free time in school when she found out about The Fund’s tutoring program and the opportunity to work one-on-one with a student.  

Although it is only her first semester as a tutor, Pritika has discovered how rewarding her tutoring sessions with Fresh Air student, Ibraheem have been.  

16-year-old Ibraheem is not new to The Fresh Air Fund. The Fund has had a significant impact on Ibraheem’s life since his mom first signed him up for the Career Awareness Program and Camp Mariah at 11-years-old. When Ibraheem thinks about his time at camp, he remembers the outdoor activities like hiking, but most of all remembers the peacefulness he felt when he first went to camp. 

“It was very fun. I was not sure about going at first because I was going to miss talking to my friends. I remember my mom telling me to write letters to her all the time, but I never did because I ended up having a lot of fun – it was one of the best experiences in my life,” Ibraheem shared about his first summer at camp. 

This school year is Ibraheem’s second year participating in the tutoring program. He first started the program in-person before it transitioned virtually and was excited to work with his new tutor Pritika.  

“Having the tutoring program switch virtually actually works really well because using the Zoom feature – you can share your work on the screen! Since our homework and assignments are on the computer, it’s easier,” Ibraheem said.  

Pritika and Ibraheem start each tutoring session by catching up and sharing about their week – discussing school and classes or simply what fun things they did. Then they transition into prioritizing homework or subjects that Ibraheem needs help with. 

“Pritika also helps me study for my tests. Our tutoring sessions are informative and we get to review the materials for the test. I noticed that tutoring is helping me do well and pass my classes,” Ibraheem said. 

Each week, Ibraheem is excited to continue working on his math skills. He is passionate about academics, really enjoys working on his assignments and challenging himself. 

“We often focus on whichever subject he needs help with. A lot of time, it is math but sometimes it could be other subjects. We also work on reading assignments, history and have even done some brainstorming for upcoming assignments,” Pritika said.  

Ibraheem hopes to have a career in engineering one day. For now, he is proud that by using the math skills he practiced during tutoring, he can help his friends in school and support them by helping them with their homework or to prepare for an exam.  

“My favorite moments are when we have been working on a math assignment for a while and suddenly Ibraheem has a light bulb moment where he starts to understand and then tries a few problems on his own,” Pritika shares. 

Ibraheem’s mom, Kim, has seen the impact that The Fund has had on Ibraheem and how each week through the tutoring program Ibraheem continues to improve his math, reading and problem-solving skills.  

“The Fresh Air Fund – they are our family. They are phenomenal and had so much impact on Ibraheem’s growth. In terms of his academics, I’m so in awe of the organization because they helped Ibraheem grow so much and the love is tremendous,” Kim, shares.