July Newsletter

The Official Newsletter of The Villages, Inc.

Welcome to the official e-newsletter of The Villages. Every month we’ll share updates on our new facility, programs happening at The Villages, and spotlights of our staff, children, and partners.

Be sure to follow along through our monthly e-newsletter by subscribing below. 

New Improvements to the Education Program


Big changes are on the horizon for the Villages Education Program! This year work started on a new multi-purpose facility that will not only improve the administrative offices but offer children a great space for education, recreation, and dining.
Currently, the Education Program serves around 50 students from the Unaccompanied Children program. Children that are in the Unaccompanied Children program come from other countries, seeking asylum in the United States. The primary goals for the Education Program are to prepare students for the American education system and to teach them English. The students are also taught a variety of other subjects like math, social studies, and art. 
When Unaccompanied Children come to the Villages they are assessed by the Education Program for areas such as math and reading comprehension. Each student is then given a tailored education. 
The Villages has several houses, each with its own classroom. This means that classes are separated by the house and not by age or skill level. It also means that there’s a limited separation between where the kids sleep and where they learn. Currently, educational staff have to move from house to house, bringing their supplies with them to each building. 
With the new facility, students can expect a vast improvement in the Education Program. The 21,000 square foot facility will offer six classrooms that are in a completely separate building from their housing. This will create a better atmosphere for learning and shorten the distance that education staff need to move from classroom to classroom.
The new facility will also include a new half gym for physical education on American sports and exercising in the winter months. There will also be a cafeteria, a break room for staff, and storage space for educational supplies.
To say we are excited about the new facility is an understatement! 
Photo provided by Architect One

Art Project Spotlight  

In our learning center this month, children at the Villages worked on self-portraits.
We’re proud to showcase a few of them below. 

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff spotlight is Mercedes Arizpe!
  1. How long have you worked at the Villages?
    I’ve worked at the Villages for four years.     

  2. What do you do in your job?
    I work as a Youth Care Worker. I like to think my main responsibility is to make sure the kids know this is a safe place. Besides that, I cook dinner and supervise the kids in the evenings. 
  3. What made you join the Villages team?
    For 10 years I was a foster parent. It seemed like a natural fit to join the Villages team.

  4. What’s your favorite part of your job? 
    I really love preparing the kids for life in the United States and helping them to understand the culture here. I enjoy giving them advice and helping them build life skills. 

    I also love the people I work with. Working at the Villages is like having an extended family. 

  5. What do you like to do in your free time?
    In my free time, I like to garden and relax with essential oils. 

Partner Spotlight

The McCrummen Immigration Law Group is a full-service immigration law firm in North Kansas City, Missouri that provides comprehensive immigration solutions for businesses and families. This firm has been essential in helping the children in our Unaccompanied Children program.

Children from all over the world come to the United States each year. Many are seeking asylum due to violence in their home country. Their circumstances are varied and could include gender-based abuse, political refuge, or a need for protection from gang violence in their home country. Others may have been abused, abandoned, or neglected by one or both parents. In our Unaccompanied Children program, we offer refuge to these children for a short period of time until they are able to live with their sponsors.

Clare Shaw, an attorney at the McCrummen Immigration Law Group, works specifically with our Unaccompanied Children, assisting them through the legal process of seeking asylum. Clare and her assistant Kathy, along with a team of individuals at the McCrummen Immigration Law Group, reviews each child’s case and works to make sure each child knows their rights within 10 days of arriving at the Villages. If the child’s sponsor is located in another state, Clare and her team work to make sure the children are connected with attorneys in that area when they leave the Villages. The McCrummen group also provides legal representation in certain cases, advocates for the children, and provides legal assistance when needed.

The McCrummen Immigration Law Group is an essential part of supporting the children that come to the Villages. To learn more about McCrummen Immigration Law Group LLC, visit https://kcimmigrationlaw.com/

Student Spotlight

This month’s student spotlight is Sam B! 

Sam has been at the Villages since September 29th, 2020 and was recently adopted by his old 5th-grade teacher. While Sam is excited about his new home, he’s told his case manager that he’s really going to miss House 7.

In Sam’s free time he loves football, track, and video games.

Congratulations on the new home Sam! 




PO Box 4967, Topeka, Kansas 66604

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