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Youth of the Year: Louis Melendez

Youth of the Year winner, Louis Melendez

Louis Melendez, a resident of White Plains, a senior at White Plains will be graduating White Plains High School June 2019. Louis has a grade point average of 4.4.

Among Louis community service activities include being a member of the Youth Bureau’s Youth Court which he joined 2016. He has contributed countless hours to the program and help youth needing direction and support. Louis has been a consistent and active participant at Westchester County Budget hearings for White Plains youth. He has spoken out on the value of youth programs and the impact youth agencies, especially the White Plains Youth Bureau ability to change the trajectory of at-risk youth. Louis has also been a voice for youth regarding gun violence and how this important issue affects our community and our nation. He has participated in forums and workshop including a Gun Violence Forum organized by Congresswoman Nita Lowey on this important issue.   

Louis comments that as a result of participating in the Youth Court program, his confidence, public speaking and ability to sort out issues has improved.  “The Youth Court program has made me a better person by not being afraid to speak my mind or try new things.”

Some of Louis other community service activities include being President of the Key Club at White Plains High School where he has donated well over 100 hours of service including supporting various causes in Africa; member of the Mariachi Club at White Plains High School; volunteer at White Plains Hospital; SAT tutor at the White Plains Library and participating in Food Drives at El Centro Hispano.  

Louis has worked at the White Plains Center for Nursing Care as a Nurse Station Assistant and he currently works weekends at Saint Bernard Church.

Louis states that he has “a passion to help others and to make an impact on the lives of people that he meets.”

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WHITE PLAINS YOUTH BUREAU “AFTER SCHOOL CONNECTION” PROGRAM ORGANIZED

“KAPE FOR KIDS” WITH MARIA FARERI CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

Kape for Kids at Maria Fareri Children's Hospital 

White Plains, NY – October 26, 2018:  The White Plains Youth Bureau After School Connection program worked with Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla to present children with more than 30 capes for their annual Halloween Parade.  The Parade was held Wednesday, October 30, at the hospital.

The children in the City of White Plains Youth Bureau’s “After School Connection” program are no strangers to community service. Over the years the children have sung at local nursing homes, made dolls for less fortunate children in Africa, donated books, toys, shoes and clothing to children in several countries and other items for storm victims around the world. The coordinator of the Youth Bureau’s after school program, Byron Smalls, reached out to the Maria Children’s Hospital for their newest quest: “Kape for Kids!”

Children enrolled in the after school program, working together with Smalls and the program’s on site seamstress Anita Wiltshire, were able to create over 25 handmade one of a kind capes just in time for Halloween and the annual Halloween parade put on by the hospital every year.

The hope is that the personalized capes will empower the children, remind them of the strength and courage they each possess and remind them that they are real heroes.  When you think of a hero you think of someone who is brave, strong, relentless and determined and that is a perfect description of what we want the children in the hospital to know we think of them.

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59th Annual Clubmen Gala 2018

 

Youth Bureau and the Flight Simulator/Flight Academy Program.

 
The program is designed to provide youth and young adults, 12 to 24 years of age, with flight instruction. One hour of flight instruction is offered. Slots are available between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.  
This is a free program.
 
According to the airline industry, there is a growing shortage of pilots and this puts the future of the industry at risk. A recent report by CNN indicated that “over the next two decades, 87 new pilots will have to be trained and ready to fly a commercial airliner every day in order to meet the demand to travel by air.” In the next 20 years, BOEING has estimated that airline carriers in North America will need 117,000 pilots. More than 42% of active U.S. airline pilots at the biggest carriers will retire over the next 10 years, according to a recent report by Cowen & Company.  
 
The White Plains Youth Bureau has plans to expand the Flight Academy Program in the future to work with the airline industry and to work with Westchester County Airport to establish a Cadet Program.
 
For more information and to receive an application for the program, contact Laura Montoya at the White Plains Youth Bureau at 914-422-1378 or lmontoya@whiteplainsny.gov.