Note from the Editor: This is an article in a series called "Wethersfield Heroes," where our students work to highlight and honor those in our community going above and beyond amidst the tumultuous year. If you know someone that you would like to nominate as a Wethersfield Hero, please contact Mr. Martin at email@example.com.
By: Lena Uccello
At a young age, we all begin to envision what our future looks like. Some want to be a teacher, some a lawyer, and others, even an astronaut. Jamain Naidoo, a parent ambassador for the WECC (Wethersfield Early Childhood Collaborative) council, had these same dreams as a child. But, it was the trial and error of these visions that led this mom of 2 boys, and a strong advocate for families in town, to where she is today.
It was when Jamain first connected with Kimberly Bobin, family and early childhood coordinator of WECC, that her involvement with the organization began. Jamain was looking to learn more about childcare options in town and after having a positive outcome she saw this program as a valuable resource and felt that not enough families in town knew what WECC was and how it could benefit them.
However, it was not just the program itself that caught Jamain’s attention, it was the person in charge, Kimberly Bobin. Kim is an unbelievable resource; a kind hearted, caring member of our community who is always turning her wheels to find ways to incorporate change while actively listening for feedback. Her leadership style is a rare quality that’s hard to find, but according to Jamain, Kim checked all the boxes in this category.
“Kim is just phenomenal. She is an amazing human who is always willing to help others and is constantly working to ensure all our really cool ideas that come to fruition or at the very least land on the desks of those who can truly change our town for the better. And she’s always open to feedback which is really one of the best things about her. That’s the leadership style you want in a program that’s still growing and becoming its own,” said Naidoo.
It was because of this council and group of advocates, much like herself, that Jamain found her home and put down her roots. She found comfort in this small town and finally discovered what it was she wanted to do. This was no longer a childhood vision, it was reality.
It was about 15 years ago when Naidoo decided to leave her birthplace of South Africa and move here to the United States. A new life, new people, a new town, and an entirely new country were ahead, but she was ready.
Now, when asked if immigrating to a whole new world with no friends or family was challenging, Naidoo’s first words were, “Oh my gosh, yes!”
She found it difficult to meet new people and to find moms who had similar interests as her. But, though the adaptation was quite hard to grasp in the beginning, Naidoo now says it feels like she’s been here forever.
As part of the newly added parent ambassador committee of WECC, come next year, Jamain plans to be more deeply involved within her position. She recognizes that along with herself, every other parent in town has kids in our school system. So, this being said, anything that seems beneficial for the students, Naidoo feels the need to advocate for.
In upcoming years, she hopes to see more change on a wider scale in our community, to focus on areas such as mental health, and mental health services within the schools. But, most importantly, this strong-minded and determined woman, hopes her voice continues to be heard and understood.
You know, it’s funny how things work out. Fifteen years ago, when Jamain immigrated to the US, not once did she think she’d end up here. She just came and was “winging” it, still trying to find ways to lay down her roots and make a difference. Now, all these years later, her career is ever-evolving and with that, so is her life.
As goes the quote Jamain Naidoo has and continues to live by, “Life is like a camera, focus on what’s important, capture the good times, develop from the negatives and if things don't work out take another shot.”
Leaving everything and immigrating to the United States was no easy transition, but Naidoo kept that metaphorical camera by her side, and took as many shots needed to become who she truly is today...a Wethersfield hero.
Written, edited, and produced by Wethersfield High School students, covering all news and events.