Salthawk Community Support
There is a crisis in Hutchinson among our young people. Generational poverty, drugs, unemployment, alcohol and other challenges are robbing some of them of their youth and education.
For several years, Communities in Schools of Mid-America funded a designated staff person, Nikkee Byard, at Hutchinson High School to help these students. Due to cuts in state funding, CIS terminated this program from Hutchinson High School June 30, 2017.
A group of local churches, civic organizations and dedicated individuals banded together to form “Salthawk Community Support” in an effort to continue the vital work being done through this program. Together, we raised $50,000 to cover salary and program expenses for the 2017-18 school year. It is our goal to continue raising awareness and funding to make sure this program continues well into the future.
Through this program, Nikkee Byard, SCS Director, provides crisis intervention, social and emotional support, behavior intervention, academic support and interaction with the families. Nikkee also coordinates with local volunteers and organizations to provide mentors and tutors and meets immediate needs of the students (clothing, shoes, lunch funds, groceries, hygiene items, etc). She manages a lengthy list of opportunities throughout the school year for the students to improve their lives such as Future Finance Now, Changing the Atmosphere, Community Service Dates, and the Salthawk Angel Project at Christmas, just to name a few.
Nikkee holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and brings years of hands-on experience to the table. Her influence and relationships with students provides the kind of dependable, crucial support that is impossible to quantify. Nikkee’s continued leadership of this program is core to our goal of making positive and lasting changes in the lives of Hutchinson High School students. Nikkee can be reached by calling 620-615-4356.
For the 2019-2020 school year, we expanded our reach to Hutchinson Middle School 8. The students at HMS8 may be younger, but the needs are just as big. Our Site Coordinator at HMS8 provided a supportive, listening ear to the kids and meeting immediate needs. She also worked with volunteers who help with special programs and are present in the early mornings to talk with the kids before school begins.
How can you help? Send a check to Salthawk Community Support, 1602 N Main St, Hutchinson, KS 67501 or click here to make an online donation. All contributions are tax deductible. Your support is so important to this cause.
Volunteer as a Mentor or Tutor. Not a lot of time is required, but you will make a huge difference in the lives of these students. You will receive free training provided by Communities That Care that will prepare you for the experience. Interested in volunteering? Contact Nikkee Byard to help at Hutchinson High School or Whitney Parr to help at HMS8. The time you invest in a young person’s life will never be wasted.
Salthawk Community Support is a ministry of Trinity United Methodist Church in partnership with Altrusa Club of Hutchinson, CrossPoint Church, First Mennonite Church, First Presbyterian Church, Grace Episcopal Church, Hutchinson Community Ministries (Fair Price Clothing Store), Hutchinson High School, Hutchinson Middle School 8, Journey Mennonite Church, New Covenant Presbyterian Church, Park Place Christian Church, Soroptimist International of Hutchinson, USD #308 and many dedicated individuals.
We’ve had great support from the Hutchinson News and the Great Plains United Methodist Conference! Check out these articles: