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      Children of Colonias take reading summer program

      A group of children were acknowledged for their dedication to a reading program today in South Alamo.

      Maria Marquez is only 9 years old, but she already understands that education will help her succeed in life.

      I want to be a doctor, Marquez said.

      So instead of playing with friends during her summer break, she TMs been reading.

      A Resource In Serving Equality, also known as ARISE, offers a summer reading program for low-income immigrant families who live in colonias.

      Many of their parents have not graduated high school and there TMs not much educational support at home, Nathan Prunty, program director, said.

      Organizers go door to door in colonias in Alamo, Pharr and Edinburg offering this free program to families.

      The program is meant to keep kids out of trouble while improving their English literacy, math and science skills

      That TMs what ARISE is here for, we try to keep them in school and track them to the right path, volunteer Andrea Salinas said.

      ARISE also offers programs for parents.

      Marquez TMs mother Fabiola Santana started taking English and parenting classes.

      I started involving myself more, and therefore my children started getting motivated because I am pushing and supporting them, Santana said.

      Organizers tell Action 4 the real goal is to spark an interest in learning.

      They come out of it with more confidence in English and reading, and many of them tell us that they enjoy reading more, Prunty said.