Evangeline “Van” DeVol grew up in many places around the world including England and South America. Her family moved around frequently during her childhood because her father was in the aluminum industry and he had to go where the work required him to be.
Because she was exposed to many different cultures she saw poverty firsthand and she experienced the feeling of not quite “fitting in” while in school. This experience eventually led her to the desire of wanting to be a teacher herself.
Van decided to officially call the United States home after a few years in the classroom in England. She moved to Washington D.C. where she was exposed to the poverty in America’s inner-city schools. She saw the problem the students were having with family members constantly in and out of prison and the students themselves getting wrapped up in the wrong groups. Few of the students had hope of ever going to college or getting out of poverty.
Years later Van found herself moving to Loveland, Ohio with her husband for his work. After a family crisis she found herself out of the classroom for the first time in a long time. This moment caused her to reevaluate her goals and direction in life. Though not immediately, this led her to starting NEST Community Learning Center.
NEST describes itself as a provider of sound Nutrition and targeted Education in a Safe neighborhood environment that will Transform the outcome of at-risk school-age children. In short, their goal is to provide hope to children living in poverty.
NEST helps these children by taking a mobile classroom in an RV to the neighborhoods of these children, providing nutritious meals, tutoring, and community. Van wants to give these students confidence, which is the beginning of success. When they have help studying for tests and getting their homework done, they can stand at that bus stop the next morning one step closer to being successful in school and breaking the cycle of poverty.
NEST is always looking for volunteer help and donations so they can expand their outreach into the communities. For more information or to donate contact Van at nestclc.org or 513-582-0673.