Joy Anderson-Woodfolk needed a little extra cash. So she quit taking her blood pressure medication in June.
The South Side retiree considers it a small sacrifice.
Anderson-Woodfolk read a May 12 story in the Chicago Sun-Times about three young women from Lindblom Math and Science Academy on the South Side heading to top American universities in the fall — and she decided she wanted to help them.
“I had someone to support and encourage me,” said Anderson-Woodfolk, who lives in the Kenwood-Oakland community. “I just felt like coming from these communities, no one is rich. While they may have scholarships and grants, it’s still not enough for all those things you need.”
So Anderson-Woodfolk and six of her friends, all mostly African-American retirees, pitched in and bought enough toiletries for the three young women — as well as for five more Lindblom college-bound students — to last each of them for the whole academic year.
“I was overjoyed and excited,” said April Weathers, who chairs the counseling department at Lindblom, a CPS selective-enrollment school.
The supplies, all boxed up, were delivered to Lindblom Wednesday.
It’s the first time in recent memory a Lindblom student is attending Harvard; that’s Andrea Bossi, who is considering studying biology. In addition, Faith Jones is heading to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Abisola Olawale, originally from Nigeria, is heading to Stanford.
About 97 percent of students at Lindblom, in West Englewood, are minorities; and about 80 percent are low income, according to the school’s website.
Anderson-Woodfolk said she went to her doctor Wednesday. He hasn’t encouraged her to quit taking her medicine. Her blood pressure was up a tad, but otherwise she was in pretty good shape, the doctor told her.
“My doctor said, ‘Whatever you’re doing, don’t stop,'” Anderson-Woodfolk said.