Woodishill Projects Helping Eastside Kids Learn, Grow

An eastside organization is helping to keep kids out of trouble. The Wichita Falls Housing Authority oversees the Woodishill Project. The agency divides it's resources into three sections for eastside residents. There are already two other centers Ben Donnell and Baileys. Those are geared toward adults, but since it's opening nearly a year ago Woodishill is where children go to learn and have fun. The center continues to expand.

Located off Mill Street is a place where children come to read and paint.

"They have trouble and they really can't get it at school and they come here and ask questions and if we have knowledge help them," said Shannon Starks, President of Mill Street.

"We do parades, we do parties, we do coloring activities, we do praise dances. We do a lot," said 13-year-old Evelyn Walden.

Walden attends daily along with several other children. She's joined by Shannon Starks who runs the Woodishill Projects. He's here Monday through Friday from 4 until 7 p.m. He helps the children by tutoring them in school subjects and offering life lessons.

"We call it reaching out to our community. So we're helping our community who is direly in trouble," said Starks.

"By them opening up the center every day that gives them somewhere to go takes them off the streets," said Traci Hicks with the Wichita Falls Housing Authority.

"They are awesome they've literally hit the pavement running. The Woodishill Projects is one of our newest council members and they have excelled," said Hicks.

It's been a rapid growth, after shutting down for more than two decades community members wanted to open it back up for the kids to keep them away from trouble. For them the time and effort that went into is worth it.

"The smile on the kids faces, makes it worthwhile," said Starks.

The board is only required to have the center open to meet once a month, but those who run it are there five days a week offering children a helping hand when they most need it.

Ben Donnell and Baileys Projects have been opened for decades. Both of those centers serve eastside residents. They offer a computer lab and cooking classes.

Traci Hicks with the housing authority says some of the Woodishill board members spend money out of their own pockets to supply snacks for the kids.

Crystal Hall Newschannel 6.