Humans of CIANA, Student Edition: Anamol and Urmilla



Anamol first came to the United States from Nepal in March 2020. He wasn't fluent in English, and was having difficulty in his new fifth grade class. No sooner did he arrive than he had to attend school from home due to COVID-19, completely changing his educational experience.


While Anamol was struggling with online classes, his mother Urmilla was eagerly looking for a program that could help Anamol to succeed in school.


“My son was so bored during the pandemic and he couldn’t go anywhere. He couldn’t go to school either," Urmilla recalls. "Almost 6-7 months having to stay at home online which is so boring.”


Urmilla, who came to the U.S. eight years prior to her son, wanted Anamol to have a place to go to make up for his lack of academic stimulation in his stagnant learning environment. Urmilla's brother had received legal services from CIANA several years earlier, and when she heard that CIANA also offers after school homework help and enrichment activities, she reached out immediately to enroll Anamol.


Anamol gives his mother a good report on his experience with CIANA. Urmilla relays to us that, “He likes CIANA programs. Sophie is so wonderful. Anamol loves her. Anamol says, “Is Sophie coming?”


Sophie Riina is CIANA’s Educational Programs Director who often directly engages with the students enrolled in our afterschool programs, as well as their parents. “She is just so wonderful. I want to continue tutoring for him and increase the hours if possible.”


Anamol loves reading about different topics, and thinks that learning various subjects through CIANA’s program has helped him learn English. “I read many different articles about different things. It helps me a lot to grow my knowledge. I can even tell my relatives and parents about these topics if it interests me.”


Although the two haven’t connected with our staff in-person, through our online afterschool program they know CIANA as a friendly and welcoming organization. “They are always smiling and kind to him. CIANA is the best.”