Blog

A Bittersweet Farewell to Beloved PCHP Graduate and Board Member


Julian Gomez is a beloved PCHP graduate and Board member. As he embarks on his next phase of success in Tokyo, Japan we are proud to share his story, extend our deepest gratitude for his support of PCHP, and wish him, and his growing family, all the best. We look forward to his return!

Meet Julian

Today, Julian Gomez is getting ready to relocate from New York to Tokyo, Japan as the senior legal counsel at Sojitz Corporation of America, part of the

e0j0i9

Sojitz Group, a multi-national corporation with operations throughout the world. Before Sojitz, he was an associate at Proskauer Rose, one of New York’s largest and most well-known law firms. And before that, long before that, he was a toddler participating with his mother in the Westchester, NY Parent-Child Home Program.

Julian’s mother, Maria, immigrated to the United States from Colombia a year before Julian was born. Maria spoke very little English but was committed to giving her children the best educational opportunities. Living in White Plains, NY, she found the support of Westchester Jewish Community Services and learned of the Parent-Child Home Program. She signed up right away.

How PCHP Helped

Julian vividly remembers starting the Program – the face of his early literacy specialist and his mother’s excitement. He believes the Program helped his mother become comfortable in her role as his first teacher and made him comfortable with himself as a learner. “The Program gave me the confidence I needed to enter school and learn English,” said Julian. In fact, when Julian went back and reviewed his own pre-k and kindergarten records, he discovered that his teachers had noted that, even as he was still working on learning English, he was very focused on learning and very comfortable interacting with all the different children in the classroom.

Maria credits the Program with supporting her in teaching her children to love to learn. She still has many of the program books, which became part of the family library and were also used by Julian’s younger brother.

Julian said, “PCHP helped set our priorities. My mother and I were always on the same page about education and its importance.” Julian graduated from

2urnqja

High School and went on to earn a B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University and a J.D. from Pace University School of Law. Julian draws a clear line from his involvement in The Parent-Child Home Program to his academic success. He’ll tell you right away: “I noticed it at my 10 year reunion. Out of the group of 40 of us or so, that I considered to be the kids from the neighborhood, a handful of us did the Parent-Child Home Program, and that small handful of us were the ones that went off to college and the others did not. I think the one obvious factor was the Parent-Child Home Program.”

Giving Back to PCHP

In 2006, Julian was invited to join the Board of Directors of the Parent-Child Home Program. He was a very important member of the Board both because of his first-hand experience in the Program and because of his legal background. He served on the Board Development committee, and often spoke publicly about the Program and the impact it had on his life. His passion for the Program helped raise awareness and supported PCHP’s expansion to more families in need.

When he announced that he would need to step down from Board service during his time in Tokyo, Julian said “I truly feel that this Program has changed my life, my brother’s, my mom’s – and impacted me in a huge way. That story I have told. The story I don’t tell is that when I was invited to participate in the Board I was 32 years old; I was a young associate at a large law firm, and they are not known for building up people’s confidence. When I got to PCHP, I was truly touched by the support that I received. It was truly, for me, a life changing experience. It gave me a voice that I did not have before on a professional level. I felt empowered to talk to people, guide discussions, take on conflict – and all of those skills I learned while on the Parent-Child Home Program board. I really joined the Board to give back, but the Board kept on giving me more and more. Even though I am leaving, I feel I have come full-circle…and it is coming at a perfect time in my life because my wife is now pregnant. So now I truly can appreciate the Parent-Child Home Program.”

Julian and his wife recently visited a school in Jamaica. Julian was surprised to see how active the 2- and 3-year-olds were. “Now for years I’ve been

153rb60

preaching how great the Program is. You take 2- and 3-year-olds, you give them a book and sit them down – never actually realizing the reality of trying to do that exercise. But, ironically the way it worked out, we were sitting there and the kids were all over the place and the teacher invited me to read to them and they all just huddled around.”

“It reminded me of the impact that a book or a toy can have on a child’s life. The Parent-Child Home Program brought me my first book, and I am very excited to give that opportunity to my child.”

SHARE

Related Resources

March 8, 2021

Dr. Chrishana M. Lloyd Joins the ParentChild+ Board of Directors...

ParentChild+ is pleased to announce the election of Dr. Chrishana M. Lloyd, a nationally recognized Early Childhood researcher, to its Board of Directors.  Tai Chang Terry, President of the ParentChild+ Board welcomed Dr. Lloyd to the Board noting, “She is an expert in the field of early childhood,…

August 27, 2020

ParentChild+ MA Virtual Site Visits...

Take look at what ParentChild+ Massachusetts has been doing during these unprecedented times to keep connected with the families they work with:

August 4, 2020

Read’s Initiative 2019-20...

The Reads Initiative has been helping to make significant impacts for families in South Jamaica, Queens and East New York, Brooklyn since 2014. Reads helps to serve the literacy needs of children and families in targeted low-income neighborhoods and ParentChild+ is honored to be a partner. Below you…

July 29, 2020

ParentChild+ featured in The Junior League of Charlotte presents The CRIER Spring/Summer 2020 ...

PARENTCHILD+ by Tammy Stanard ParentChild+ uses education to break the cycle of poverty for low-income families. The organization engages early in life and helps toddlers, their parents, and their family child care providers access a path to possibility. For families living in underserved communities, ParentChild+ is a first…

July 20, 2020

United Way of Central Carolinas and Foundation For The Carolinas Awards ParentChild+ COVID-19 ...

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA JULY 2020 – Since the COVID-19 crisis began in March, ParentChild+, a leading school readiness organization working in communities furthest from opportunity has rapidly adapted its model to meet the emergent needs of the families hardest hit by the crisis.  ParentChild+’s primary focus is eliminating…

July 9, 2020

Home Schooling: The ParentChild+ program has boosted high school graduation among Philly’s most ...

Malkia Singleton Ofori-Agyekum believes that the messenger makes a difference. “You’re going to take what you hear from someone you don’t identify with versus a person you do identify with in a very different way,” she says. As the Pennsylvania state director of ParentChild+, an early literacy, school-readiness…

April 29, 2020

Laid Off and Stressed: What Do I Do With My Two-Year-Old?...

Tipping Point’s Early Childhood portfolio invests in organizations that provide literacy and parenting support to families with children ages 0-3. Under shelter-in-place, many of these low-income families have endured lost wages, lack of internet access, and overcrowded homes leading to an increase in parental stress. On top of…

April 21, 2020

Financial hardships abound amid the COVID-19 crisis – but it’s important to remember the ...

(Philly Voice) – Parents during the COVID-19 crisis are exhausted. They are struggling to stay safe and work essential jobs, while finding care for their children. They are struggling to maintain normalcy while working from home and juggling child care, home schooling and Zoom circle time. The burnout…

April 20, 2020

Home Visiting Continues — At a Distance...

(Education Dive) – Virtual visits can reach “families when nobody else is,” but experts say it’s necessary to have first established strong in-person relationships. Along the border with Nevada, home visitors in Mono County, California, are parking near the homes of their clients and using hotspots to connect…

March 10, 2020

New Charlotte Group Hopes Books, Toys And Toddlers Can Break Cycle Of Poverty...

(WFAE) – Mecklenburg County is expanding pre-K to get 4-year-olds ready for kindergarten – but what about getting younger children ready for pre-K? A national program that’s moving into Charlotte does just that. Nerys Centeno is one of the local pioneers. On a recent February afternoon, she arrived at…

March 1, 2020

The Best Children’s Books To Celebrate National Read Across America Day 2020...

(Forbes) – March 2 is National Read Across America Day, which encourages students of all ages—especially those without access to books and libraries—to read more. Luckily, there are organizations committed to this initiative year-round. For instance, the New York City-based Pajama Program promotes comforting bedtime routines for children…

February 14, 2020

Malden Family Welcomes Mayor Christenson for his first ParentChild+ Home Visit...

Malden ParentChild+ started in Fall 2019, with support from the Wellington Management Foundation and sponsored by the Malden Public Schools.  Now in its second year, the program is working with 20 families and their two- and three-year-old children, and plans to enroll up to 30 families by the…