Thank You Notes (Welcoming Center 2020)*

In partnership with the the Illinois Department of Human Services, Office of Immigrants & Refugee Welcoming Centers, we provided ESL and Digital Literacy classes to students who had lost all or part of their income. Graduates of this initiative received Chromebooks to keep, so they could continue to navigate the online world through their devices.

“Thank you for giving us the main tool needed to continue learning. We were affected by COVID, and it has been a bit difficult for me to purchase a computer. Thank you to professor Tobar for giving us his time without asking for anything.” – Adriana

“I would like to give thanks to the people who donated the computers. Thank you for thinking of me, because due to COVID I was unemployed. I am also taking care of my son with disabilities. He is taking remote classes at home, and I am doing the computer classes that were offered to parents beforehand. I am grateful for your donation, thank you very much.” – Blanca

“…Thanks to Onward House, I have been taking advantage of time—instead of it being time lost, it has become a time of learning. My children and I express our most sincere gratefulness to all the team at Onward House who, along with the teacher, do an excellent job. Without you, a lot of the things that I have learned for the benefit of my children and myself would not have been possible….Thank you for being a professional team and for sowing knowledge in those who need it the most.” – Cecilia

“I can affirm that there is a before and after the [computer] course, because when the pandemic started and the virtual broadcasts began, my working days were more difficult. I really feel very grateful that there are people or institutions that care about the adult community, since for different reasons we have been left behind with technology. This has been a wonderful opportunity, from the moment I found out that Onward Neighborhood House was offering computer classes for adults. Do not hesitate to call and ask for information to register. In fact, this computer will help me continue studying and keep up-to-date on the daily changes that are happening in technology. Thank you very much for all the support in general that the program offers, to the administrative staff, to the excellent teachers who teach the courses, for the patience they have with us, and for the human quality they possess. Thank you very much also for supporting people who like me believe in constant personal improvement.” – Elda

“I am a mother of five, and when everyone started taking remote classes at home, I had no idea how to help them and how to communicate with the teachers…Thanks to this laptop that I received I will be able to do my work better, since I did not have a computer, and I did it with my cell phone, with more difficulty but with all the desire to learn. And now with my laptop I will be able to do my work and take my class more comfortably and easier. Thank you for your generosity and support.” – Anonymous

“I am grateful to the Onward House organization for giving me this support at this time. Onward House is giving me computer classes, and it is a great help because of what we are going through at the moment. Now it is all about technology, so the classes giving me a laptop to continue to study is very helpful. I am grateful for having an excellent teacher for the computer classes. Brandon is a very patient, excellent person. I work in cleaning and cleaning houses, and right now with COVID people do not want me to clean their houses. For that I give thanks, thank you for providing this support. God bless you so that you continue to support the community. Thank you.” – Elvia

“Due to the fact that the children are not going to school, and I have to be at home for my daughter with special needs, to be present in the online classes I have stopped working, helping my husband with the utility payments and rent. The online classes have helped me a lot; at the beginning, I did not know how to open the page for CP, but thanks to the classes and the teacher who explains very well and is very patient with the people who are learning, I have learned to keep up to date with things at my daughter’s school. In addition, I can keep in communication with the school.” – Anonymous

“I thank Onward House for offering this resource to Latinos to continue moving forward in this country. I wish that in the future you may continue offering English classes and computer classes, since many Latinos need this to grow and continue to move forward to reach the American Dream.” – Guillermo

“Through this letter I would like to give thanks to Onward House, located in 5413 W. Diversey Ave., Chicago, IL…for the opportunity of being able to take computer classes. Sadly, due to the pandemic, I have struggled financially and I have no employment, so these classes are of great importance for me and my children. I had little knowledge of computers, and I know that these classes will help me to keep up to date with technology. I like I am able to help my children with the future of technology. Finally, thank you very much for gifting me this computer for my benefit and my children’s benefit.” – Iliana

“I was affected by COVID-19: I lost my job of 12 years and I was sick from the virus, sick with bone pain, headaches, flu, teary eyes, a dry cough, sore throat and fever. I thank God that I am recovering. I went to get tested for Covid and I was positive. I thank you a lot for your help. Thank you for the laptop. It will help me in my online computer classes that I am taking right now. In these moments, I am not working and I am helping my kids during their virtual classes.” – J

“My name is Juanita, and I want to give thanks to Onward House for gifting me a computer. The truth is that I do need it to be able to take my English classes. I would like to share with you that I was born here, but my parents took me to Mexico when I was small, and I lost all the opportunities of this beautiful country. There are times that when I travel, and they see my documents and ask me why I don’t speak English. The truth is I want to learn the language, and sometimes I reproach my parents, wondering why they took me to Mexico. I lost my chances of studying, but I know it’s never too late to learn. I am very happy that I have been gifted the computer—right now the truth is I do not work, and my husband sometimes has a job and sometimes he does not. And the truth is we do not have the budget for a computer. I am grateful for Onward House, and I am excited with a lot of desire to continue studying and preparing myself. May God bless you all always, and all the people that gave their little grain of sand to help all the people that are in need.” – Juanita

“Through this letter I would like to give thanks to Onward House, and everyone that makes it possible that we are able to benefit from these free computer classes in the comfort of [our] own home. I am immunocompromised so that is good. This time has been difficult for everyone but programs like yours make it bearable. I am a mother of five students and it has been overwhelming, since many if them don’t know a lot about technology. Now I can help my children and have a good job from my home. Also I was gifted a Chromebook” – Karina

“I want to give a warm thanks to Onward House for the wonderful advanced computer course they are giving us, which will finish at the end of the year. Not only is it a very up-to-date course for the work needs of our time, but we have also had digital resources, such as recordings of classes, to be able to be able to study later at home; help from our teachers at all times, even on days when we don’t have classes; and at all times, the correct answer to our questions, which clearly showed the professional level of our professor Brandon. I learned a lot in this course, and I was invited to attend another. I will be happy to keep in touch with Onward House. Thank you so much.” – Louisa

“I give many thanks to Onward Neighborhood House for the computer classes that I have been taking with you, because this way I am going to be able to compete in this new world of technology, and be able to work in the future.” – Maria

“Good Morning. Through this letter I would like to give thanks to Onward House for all of the support that has been given to me during this time of Covid-19. Personally, it has been a great help overall being able to take my English classes from home for personal development, and this I owe all to you, who make it possible for us to continue moving on. For me it has not been easy with the pandemic: I was in the hospital for three weeks, and was unable to work for about four months. But I thank God I was able to return to work, even though it is a small amount of hours, but I still have a job. No it has not been easy. I am a single mother and my children depend on me.” – Maricela

“This is a special greeting to Onward House, to thank you for all your work and your services. Thank you for the English classes that are of great help to me for better communication and a better job. Due to the pandemic we are out of work, as are family members including my husband. My son is the only one that works. We are always trusting in God that everything will pass and return to normal.” – Miriam

“My name is Rosa, and this letter is to give thanks to all the people who are giving us support through this program. It is very important during this time for us to be able to be able to communicate virtually with people now, since many families are being affected in one way or another by the pandemic that we are living through. The computer classes are making it easy for me to understand and support my children’s education.” – Rosa

“It is a pleasure to greet you, and to wish you many blessings in every single one of your projects that you realize in the community. I am very grateful for the Chromebook and for the help that you have gifted me in these difficult moments that we are experiencing due to Covid, for us to be able to continue to learn and study in my English classes. I am of very low resources, and that is the reason that I continue to seek help with your organization. Thank you for always supporting every person to continue moving forward with our goals and dreams. Thank you may God continue to bless you.” – Rudy

“Thanks to you for the gift. I am going to be able to take my computer classes…I was using my children’s tablet and I was not able to download any programs, neither was I able to do my homework because of the tablet. I am also taking English classes, soit is going to be useful to me, and will help me feel more comfortable in my classes. Again thank you for the computer, which is going to help me so much in the future, enabling me to be successful and more prepared. I will be able to find a better Job.” – Maricela

“I want to thank the people who created this program to help us as people. Personally, it has helped me be able to help my children, to enroll them in school programs. In the future, it will help my children that I have this [computer] knowledge, so I can help them in their homework, and it can help us a lot to generate income for our families.” – Mireya

  • *These thank you notes have been translated and edited slightly for clarity.

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