CYP Graduating Seniors and Courage Award Recipients Honored by AACY
AACY Honors CYP Graduating Seniors and Courage Award Recipients
Palm Beach County, FL – February 15, 2011 – As part of it’s February 24th 2011 Hearts and “Soles" Fundraising Event, The American Association of Caregiving Youth (AACY) will be honoring eighteen exemplary dual-role youth participants in the organization’s model program – the Caregiving Youth Project (CYP). All eighteen of the caregiving youths are currently enrolled in The School District of Palm Beach County.
Six of them however, members of the CYP’s seminal class of student caregivers, are graduating in 2011. All six entered the CYP as eighth-graders in the 2006-07 school year and have remained with the program ever since. On hand to receive the “Keep Soaring” Eagles Award as pioneers and models for caregiving youth nationwide will be:
- Michael Galvez ( Boca Raton Community Middle School , Boca Raton Community High School )
- Lynchie Botex ( Boca Raton Community Middle School , Boca Raton Community High School )
- Lashawn Green ( Boca Raton Community Middle School , Atlantic Community High School )
- Alexandria Knapp ( Congress Middle School , Olympic Heights Community High School )
- Angelica Odom ( Congress Middle School , Boynton Beach Community High School )
- Vanessa Tolassingom ( Congress Middle School , G-Star School of the Arts)
Included in the awards presentations will be CYP liaisons from Congress Middle School (Principal: Mrs. Kathy Harris and Guidance Counselor: Mrs. Deborah Nix), and Boca Raton Middle School (Guidance Counselor: Mrs. Debrah Klein). As a testament to the long-term collaborative effort between The Palm Beach County School District and the CYP, all six graduating seniors are former Congress or Boca Raton Community Middle School students, each school having worked closely with the CYP since its inception.
Also, fourteen CYP students will receive an equally important honor, the 2nd Annual CYP “Courage Award”, for serving as ambassadors of the strength, courage and steadfastness embodied by so many caregiving youth. Along with “Keep Soaring” Eagles Award recipients Galvez and Knapp, the following twelve students will be honored for sharing their stories in a variety of mass media portrayals:
- Michael Anderson ( Lake Worth Community High School )
- Kassandra Benjamin ( Okeeheelee Middle School )
- Jimmy Braat ( Santaluces Community High School )
- Keith Bryant ( Atlantic Community High School )
- Kethia Dorceus ( Boynton Beach Community High School )
- Esther Ernest ( West Boca Community High School )
- Amanatullah Khan ( Boca Raton Community High School )
- Ann Marie Lent ( Santaluces Community High School )
- Lee Ann Lent ( Tradewinds Middle School )
- Natasha Padilla ( Boca Raton Community High School )
- Stephanie Padilla ( Boca Raton Community High School )
- Shayna Wright ( Don Estridge Middle School )
Themed “Hearts and “Soles”, AACY’s 2nd annual fundraising event, seeks to promote awareness of what it must be like to “walk in the shoes” of caregiving youth. Major sponsors include HSBC Bank USA , NA and Robert B. Campbell. The event will include cocktails and dinner, music, live and silent auctions, drawings, video presentations, guest speakers, and the aforementioned awards. A number of Democrat and Republican elected officials and/or their representatives, will also be participating in the night’s activities. Their joint presence signals the universality of the challenges facing dual-role youth and the need for bipartisan support to affect change.
Our newest national Board members Ronnette Smith of AK and Dr. Ronda Talley of KY, along with out CYP evaluator Dr. Donna Cohen of USF at Tampa will be among those joining us at our February 24th event.
Hearts and Soles Program Brochure Available Here.
AACY Partners to Fill Holiday Wish Lists for Local Caregiving Youth and Their Families
Boca Raton, FL – December 17, 2010 – The American Association of Caregiving Youth – the only national association dedicated to the support of caregiving kids – is partnering with a cadre of non-profit associations, civic-minded private corporations, and private donors to provide nearly every one of the 350 youth caregivers in it’s Boca Raton based model program —The Caregiving Youth Project — with donated gifts this holiday season. More than 70 families, including 250 family members will be present at the organization’s banner family event, a unique Holiday Gift Shoppe and Dinner being held this coming Monday, December 20th, 2010 at Benvenuto Restaurant in Boynton Beach at 6:30pm.
Caregiving Youth are children who provide care for ill, injured, elderly or disabled family members.
“These kids give so selflessly of themselves year-round,” said Dr. Connie Siskowski, President and Founder of AACY. “It’s only fitting that during the holiday season they should get the chance to be kids — that they get to receive — and that their families get an opportunity to show their appreciation for them as well.”
In keeping with the spirit of giving, youth caregivers at the unique event will go to a Holiday Gift Shoppe, where they will be allowed to select donated gifts – not for themselves – but instead for two other family members. Volunteers will be on hand to wrap the gifts for the youngsters.
Meanwhile, parents and other family members will be escorted to a separate area where they will be secretly presented with gift bags containing previously requested items and gift cards for family members to present to the kid caregivers and their siblings. During this time younger siblings enjoy creating special cards and crafts.
The event will culminate in a lavish holiday feast, a songfest and door prizes.
Even youth carers and families who cannot attend will be receiving gifts throughout the week leading up to Christmas Day. This year’s celebration will be the largest since AACY first began providing gifts to a handful of caregiving youth families in 2006.
Organizations providing funds, food, toys, or volunteers for the event include The Spirit of Giving Network, the West Palm Beach Chapter of the Marines Toys for Tots Foundation, Stratis Business Systems and AlertSite. Others who are contributing include Benvenuto Restaurant, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Olive Garden, Publix, Chartwells, Capital Grille, St. Vincent de Paul Seminary, ChariTEES, Walmart, as well as a number of private donors.
VOLUNTEER PHOTO GALLERIES
Click on the photos below to see see the related gallery
Reynaud, Mary Jo, Cristy, Kadniel, Howard our Volunteer Driver, Melissa
Bill Orlove, Commissioner, City of Boynton Beach, County Commissioner Steven Abrams, Ana, Mary Jo, Cristy & Connie. Commissioner Abrams attended the beach clean up and presented to Gary Solomon a proclamation honoring the work of the Sand Sifters.
National Kick-off Reception Program
Download the entire 14-page Brochure
Melissa Korman has posted photos of the event on melissakorman.com/aacy
Real estate entrepreneur, Founder of the Caring House Project and best selling author Frank McKinney was our Keynote Speaker. He generously donated signed copies of his book, Dead Fred, Flying Lunch Boxes and the Good Luck Circle to each youth recipient of our Courage Awards which went to Caregiving Youth Project students who had the courage to share their stories with the media during the past three years.
Frank's book can be found at frank-mckinney.com/Dead-Fred.aspx
MEDIA SPONSOR LINKS
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