Club members converged upon Indianapolis to participate in the Indiana State Youth of the Year competition for Boys & Girls Clubs. Sponsored statewide by Trusted Choice Independent Insurance Agents of Indiana, the State Youth of the Year title is a prestigious honor bestowed upon an exemplary young person in recognition of leadership, service, academic excellence, and dedication to live a healthy lifestyle. The program honors our nation’s most awe-inspiring young people on their path to great futures and encourages all kids to lead, succeed, and inspire.
On February 24, 2015 – Portage Club member Sanja Kirova was named Youth of the Year for Boys & Girls Clubs of Porter County. Upon earning this title, she traveled to Indianapolis to represent our corner of the state in the Indiana competition. Of 34 Boys & Girls Clubs organizations in Indiana (and over 100 individual Club sites), there were 29 Youth of the Year candidates of which 17 were eligible to compete. Sanja was named Fifth Place winner and earned a $500 educational scholarship from the Indiana Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs. Jeffery Hunt from Boys & Girls Clubs of Indianapolis was named state winner and will move onto Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s regional competition sponsored by Disney.
“The Indiana State Youth of the Year event is a youth celebration,” states Andre Arrington, director of organizational development for Boys & Girls Clubs of America. “Every year organizations’ throughout the state of Indiana work with over 100,000 youth focusing on developing young peoples’ social, emotional, and academic needs. The Indiana State Youth of the Year event is the culminating event for youth development work that has taken place all year. This event also selects the State Youth of the Year which will move on to represent the State of Indiana in Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s Midwest Youth of the Year in Chicago. The winner of the Midwest Youth of the Year will have the opportunity to compete in the National competition held in Washington, D.C.”
In addition to the announcement of Sanja’s Fifth Place finish, Boys & Girls Clubs of Porter County was honored by the Indiana Area Council and Indiana Alliance for Boys & Girls Clubs. Taking in five recognition awards, our organization was honored for:
Indiana Professional of the Year – Ryan Smiley
Outstanding Community Service Volunteer – Mark Chamberlain of Lakeside Wealth Management
Outstanding Board Volunteer – Dave Hollenbeck of Blachly, Tabor, Bozik & Hartman
Outstanding Marketing & Communications – Extending the Club Experience, Website Strategy & Development
Outstanding Board Development for our Board of Directors achieving 95% of Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s Key Performance Indicators for High Functioning Boards.
“Boys & Girls Clubs of Porter County is honored to receive these recognition awards from the Indiana Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs. Winning these five awards, all in the same year, is a testament to the dedication, commitment and engagement of our staff, Board and volunteers to serve the youth and teens in Porter County. With more than 100 Boys & Girls Club sites in 59 cities and 35 counties across the state of Indiana, these distinctions validate the high quality services and evidence-based programs we provide in Porter County,” states Ryan Smiley, president of Boys & Girls Clubs of Porter County.
For information on membership, volunteer opportunities, or to make a tax deductible donation to Boys & Girls Clubs of Porter County, please contact your local Club, call (219) 464-7282 or visit www.bgcpoco.org. Great Futures Start HERE.