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EXCEPTIONAL TEEN RECIEVES MOST PRESTIGIOUS HONOR; NAMED LOCAL YOUTH OF THE YEAR BY BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS OF NEW HAVEN

Z’hane Ellison set to receive college scholarship and vie for regional title this summer

New Haven, Connecticut April 28, 2017 – Selected among five other outstanding youth, Z’hane has been named the Youth of the Year by Boys & Girls Club of New Haven for second timeThe 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. Now in its 70th year, the Youth of the Year 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. Z’hane will go on to vie for the Connecticut Youth of the Year title and a $5,000 college scholarship from Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

“I am honored to be selected again to serve as Youth of the Year for my Club.   I am looking forward to being a voice for my peers.”  Z’hane Ellison.   “The Youth of the Year candidates make me incredibly proud each year.  I know their stories and how much each of them has overcome to reach their goals.  It also highlights the impact of our work with youth and their families.  The parents and staff are beaming with pride each year.  These young people truly inspire all of us.”  Stephanie Barnes, CEO.

Z’hane has been a Club member at the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven for over three years.  Though she started off as a shy and reserved young lady, Z’hane has matured into a confident young woman.  “My experience at the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven continues to help my sisters and I grow and improve our leadership skills.”  Z’hane comes to the Club each day to mentor the younger members. She enjoys facilitating the Fashion Club, a fashion design workshop for Club members she created.  Z’hane is a committed member of the Keystone Club, which is a leadership program for teens which provides opportunities to participate in activities that focus on Academic Success, Career Preparation and Community Service.  Z’hane is a senior at Sound School in New Haven, where she continues to receive high honors.  She was recently accepted to several colleges and has decided to attend the University of New Haven in the Fall of 2017 to major in their Biology and Pre-Med program.

Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Youth of the Year recognition program is presented by Disney, who has supported the youth advocacy organization for more than 50 years, empowering young people to reach their full potential and providing youth with access to the tools they need to build the great futures they imagine. Toyota, the Signature Sponsor of Youth of the Year, is dedicated to inspiring the next generations of engineers, thinkers and leaders who will help drive the American economy. Additional support is provided by University of Phoenix, a committed partner who has worked with Boys & Girls Clubs of America on many Academic Success initiatives, and the Taco Bell Foundation, Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s premier partner for teen empowerment.

If Z’hane Ellison wins at the state competition, she will compete for the title of Northeast Region Youth of the Year and an additional $10,000 college scholarship, renewable for four years up to $40,000. Five regional winners will advance to Washington, D.C. in September 2017, to compete for the title of Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Youth of the Year. The National Youth of the Year will receive an additional scholarship of $25,000, renewable each year up to $100,000 and will have the opportunity to meet with the President of the United States in the White House.

For more information about the Youth of the Year program, visit http://www.youthoftheyear.org.

About The Boys & Girls Club of New Haven
The mission of the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven is to “Inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.” Its goal is to provide children and teens with a safe positive fun place to learn and grow. It seeks this goal and fulfills its mission through delivery of five major programs: After School, Summer Vacation Camp, The Club for Teens, Weekend Kids Club, and competitive Sports programs.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (http://www.GreatFutures.org) has enabled young people most in need to achieve great futures as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,100 Clubs serve nearly 4 million young people annually through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs are located in cities, towns, public housing and on Native lands throughout the country, and serve military families in BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. They provide a safe place, caring adult mentors, fun, friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours. Priority programs emphasize academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles. In a Harris Survey of alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta. Learn more at http://www.bgca.org/facebook and http://bgca.org/twitter.

PRESS:

New Haven Register- City Teen Named Youth of the Year for Boys & Girls Club of New Haven

 

Planet Fitness is proud to partner with Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA), the nation’s leading youth development organization, supporting millions of kids and teens during the critical out-of-school time, and STOMP Out BullyingTM, the leading and most influential anti-bullying organization for kids and teens in the U.S., to make a meaningful impact on the lives of today’s youth. Our Club was featured in the anti-bullying movement PSA, click below to access video.

What is The Judgement Free GenerationTM?

The Judgement Free Generation is Planet Fitness’ philanthropic initiative designed to combat the judgement and bullying faced by today’s youth by creating a culture of kindness and encouragement.

Bullying has become all-too-common in today’s society, with 1 in 4 youth reporting that they’ve been bullied and parents of school-aged children citing it as their #1 concern. With our Judgement Free Zone® and No Gymtimidation® policies as a solid foundation, Planet Fitness is the perfect company to tackle this issue.

 

Celebrate National Boys & Girls Club Week!

National Boys & Girls Club Week, March 27-31, 2017, is not only a fun week for Club members and staff, it’s also an important time for all Clubs to share with our community how we are advocating for New Haven’s youth.

Open The Door. Take The Tour.

Social Media Postings Below:

Take The Tour Date

SMART Girls/ SMART Moves Fitness Activities

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We will be open during February Recess! Please click on flyer for more information.

February Recess 2017

 
 

Our AAU basketball program offers an exceptional opportunity for boys from across the Greater New Haven metro area to sharply upgrade their game. “Our teams have competed on a regional and national level for years,” says Boys & Girls Club of New Haven’s Athletic Director Tharon Mayes, “That’s very prideful, but we are not only about basketball. Our AAU basketball program is committed to the academic success of our players.”

For Tryout information click on image below. Today’s (3/15) tryouts have been postponed to Monday, March 20th

Mayes knows what it takes to become a player-scholar athlete. Mayes was a star at Florida State University. He remains one of the leading scorers in the schools history and was honored by an induction into the ACC Hall of Fame. After graduation, Mayes played in the NBA with the Philadelphia 76ers, Los Angeles Clippers and then enjoyed a long professional career in Europe. He also played on the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven nationally-ranked AAU basketball teams back in the early1980’s.

“We win if they go to school”

 

AAU Basketball is More Than Winning on the Court

The AAU basketball program at the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven reflects the Club’s broader goals of establishing healthy lifestyles and academic success.

While delivering an exceptionally high level of coaching for basketball skills and game strategy, the program requires that school report cards also are collected from all team members. “Doing well in school is part of the what’s required to be in our AAU basketball program,” says Mayes. “That not only opens the doors to more college scholarship opportunities. It also greatly expands the opportunities for great futures – in whatever our kids choose to do.”  Tutors and mentors are available to support all the children and teens participating in any of the Boys & Girls Club programming. The Club also coordinates with the child’s teachers.

“Our AAU kids now challenge each other for academic achievement, says Mayes. “School comes first. Not doing well in school? The player will not play until they do. Today, most of our players are A or B students.”

“Our mindset is not about going pro,” says Mayes, “but it is about creating great futures. Basketball can help our kids get into college, but the character building that we work towards helps them get the college degree that will give the opportunity to succeed wherever their interests or passions take them.”

For more information, contact Coach Mayes at: (203) 787-0187 or tharon.mayes@bgcnewhaven.org.

Also contact Coach Mayes if you are interested in developing an AAU basketball program for girls.

 

 

Volunteer / Mentor Opportunities @ The Boys & Girls Club of New Haven
Orientation Dates: Wednesday, February 8th & NEW DATE- Thursday, February 16th beginning at 5:30PM

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For more information contact Carlos Collazo, Director of Operations at 203-787-0187 ext. 11.

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#GivingTuesday

Today is #GivingTuesday! Did you know, that every gift donated directly impacts our youth?  A few examples are, free or reduced Club Memberships; access to great programs that teach, empower and inspire like Mentor2Win, Power Hour and Smart Moves, to name a few.  Join the movement TODAY to guide and assist our youth with building good character, leadership, and to promote healthier lifestyles. 

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