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NICE Newsletter: November 2013

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Gatluak Receives "Rising Advocate Award"

On December 10th, Tennessee celebrated International Human RightsAngela Harris (left), Gat and Kathy Edson (right) Day. This year, it was also a day to morn the loss of a great human rights leader, Nelson Mandela. The event was hosted by the Tennessee Human Right Commission, Metro Human Relations Commission and other government and non-profit groups.
The evening included a panel discussion regarding human rights with Tasha French Lemley of The Contributor and Pat Shea of YWCA and awards for human rights activists in Tennessee. Among the distinguished honorees was NICE's very own Gatluak Thach [pictured with Angela Harris (left) and Kathy Edson (right), NICE's outgoing vice chair and board chair.]. Gat was the recipient of the Rising Advocate Award given t
individuals who show great promise in the field of human rights.
Presenting the award to Gat was Angela Harris of the Tennessee Foreign Language Institute (TFLI). "I will never forget the day that I met Gatluak, said Harris. "He said, 'My name is difficult to pronounce, so you can call me 'Good Luck''. However, his story in not one of luck, but of a remarkable refugee". After receiving his award from Harris, a video played in which Gatluak talked about the need for collaboration to expand the work being done in this city on behalf of human rights. NICE is proud to have a leader who does so much for the community. It is a great honor for Gat, and NICE, to be recognized by those around the city. 
Gat was interviewed by Fox17 at the celebration. The segment can be found here.

NICE is Moving!

We are proud to announce that due to our remarkable growth in staff and services offered, NICE is moving to a new location on December 18th. We will continue to offer the same client-focused services at our new address at 417 Welshwood Drive, Suite 100, Nashville, TN. We're on the first floor of the Sunmark building. This new space includes many upgrades and will allow us to improve the services we offer to refugees and immigrants in Middle Tennessee. We invite you to come see our new space any time. All other contact information remains unchanged.

From Friday, December 13th until Tuesday, December 17th, NICE offices will be closed to accommodate our move. We look forward to serving you in our new location for years to come!

Announcements & Upcoming NICE Events

NICE's Student Celebration will be held on December 14th at Glencliff High School from 12-2pm. NICE students will be honored for the work they have done in the semester. If you wish to attend, simply bring a dish to share in the pot-luck meal following the ceremony. We hope to see you there.

Gat was featured in the Cumberland University publication The Rising Phoenix. Read the article here.

"Where Are They Now" is a feature NICE dedicates to previous interns and volunteers to highlight what they are currently doing. If you are a former intern or volunteer at NICE and would like to be featured in the newsletter, please contact pr@empowernashville.org for more info.
 

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How Can You Help?

We are in constant need of volunteers, interns and donations at NICE. Visit these pages to learn how you can get involved.

If you are interested in volunteering or interning with NICE, you can visit our program pages to see which program interests you. Contact Allison Cantway at 615-678-7273 or volunteer@empowernashville.org for more details.

If you have any questions or want to find other ways to get involved, simply email volunteer@empowernashville.org and someone will be happy to assist you!

November 2013 Volunteer of the Month: Fred Van Dusen

Congratulations to Fred Van Dusen, the NICE Volunteer of the Month for November 2013! ​Fred has been a volunteer at NICE for more than five years. He teaches a Level One English as a Second Language (ESL) class. Fred has been a faithful volunteer showing up for class every single week and taking a true interest in his students lives and growth as people as well as students. Fred has a great heart and wants to see his students succeed, evidenced by the effort he puts into each class he teaches.
When Fred was presented with his award, several classes gathered to congratulate him. NICE's President, Gatluak Thach, came to present the certificate to Fred as well as say a few words. Gat expressed his thanks to Fred for supporting him, along with NICE, for so long. He also gave Fred a signed copy of his new book, My New American Dream. One of Fred's former students, who is now in a level three ESL class spoke up to express his appreciation as well. It was clear that each student of Fred's--current or former--shared that sentiment and were so thankful for his guidance and commitment to help them.
NICE is so thankful for Fred Van Dusen and his dedication to helping students learn English. He is a model volunteer and this award is a simple way for everyone at NICE to express our appreciation.

Where Are They Now: April Jones

In 2012, April Jones (pictured far left in hat) completed a 6-month fellowship as a Youth Education Coordinator intern for NICE’s summer camp. Using the apartment communities of the refugee and immigrant families, she helped bridge the school year achievement gap during the summer engaging and assessing student learning and fluency in reading the English language and comprehension. Since finishing her internship at NICE, April has launched a 501(c)3 non-profit organization called Sankofa Achievement Center working with youth in various areas of academics, mentorship and leadership responsibilities. She became a second grade teacher for Metro Nashville Public Schools as a result of a successful internship at NICE. April plans to continue working in the community to impact student achievement and create a community of productive citizens.

 

We are proud of all April has accomplished and look forward to what she will do for her community in future.

Copyright © 2013 Nashville International Center for Empowerment, All rights reserved.


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