From Maria’s Desk – February 2021

Dear Ohio Valley Voices Friends and Family.

For me, winter is a chance to think about the big picture—to reflect on where we’ve been and take stock of the many struggles and opportunities that lie ahead. Despite the ongoing challenges posed by the pandemic, we at OVV have so much to be hopeful for.

Per Governor DeWine’s orders, we hope to receive the COVID vaccine by the end the month. Nevertheless, we will continue to wear masks and abide by all health department regulations for the foreseeable future. We’re not out of the woods quite yet, but there is a glimmer of hope on the horizon—and for that we are grateful!

Another glimmer of hope is Ohio Valley Voices’ Got Talent. For this virtual competition, which runs until the final event on March 6th, dozens of kids from around the city have been sending us audition videos showcasing their singing, dancing, and stand-up comedy skills. I’ve had such a blast watching all the videos and seeing the kids show off their talents. So, if you haven’t already, go check out the contestants! Their spirit and passion are sure to brighten your winter day.

February also marks Black History Month, which provides us with an opportunity to renew our commitment to racial justice. For us at OVV, that means building an inclusive staff of teachers and administrators and fostering a welcoming environment for every child regardless of their race. We are so very proud of the diverse community we’ve created.

Finally and most importantly, we are filled with pride and hope for our children, who continue to improve their listening and speaking skills even during the pandemic. As I write, more than six children are on track to graduate in the spring and enter mainstream schools, and more than ten new children are slated to enter our program by the year’s end.

I’m consistently amazed by the love, determination, and hard work of our community and staff, and I know that together we will make 2021 a success!