PORT ARTHUR - A Port Arthur native is giving back to her hometown community and stressing the importance of education.
Rebecca Briscoe is counting her blessings and spreading love to her hometown of Port Arthur. The philanthropist and media consultant says she's humbled by her successes in Houston and couldn't forget her roots.
A surprise visit and donation to Booker T. Washington Elementary School in Port Arthur, Tuesday, is one way Briscoe hopes to inspire the next generation. She also wants to emphasize the importance of education.
"If we can get the fundamentals of literacy started in Elementary school, these young people are going to be empowered, inspired and they're going to be phenomenal readers by the time they're ready for college," said Briscoe. "That's our ultimate goal."
Briscoe funded a project started by Kindergarten teacher Terry Savoy Hadley. A special notebook called "My dog Butch" along with plenty of pencils, will allow the students to write out their dreams plus practice reading and writing activities. The visit also encourages students to aim for the stars.
"It gives the students an opportunity to see that success not only happens on television, it doesn't happen somewhere else in the world, successful people are right here in your community and from your community," said Principal Erica Seastrunk.
Briscoe says remembering her time as a teacher at this very school adds extra meaning to the day's visit.
"Being in education for so long, which is my passion, I know that great teachers go the extra mile," said Briscoe. "In doing so, we make an investment and go in our pockets to get school supplies, to pay for lunches, to get coats in the winter time."
Showing support to current teachers and watching the students' eyes light up after being handed their surprise, are things Briscoe says give her the motivation to keep making a difference.
The philanthropist plans to visit the Elementary school again next month to check up on the student's progress in their notebooks.
(© 2016 KBMT)