“I am strong, I am talented, I am beautiful, I am disciplined, I am happy, I am smart, I am healthy,” said William Mack, 7, reciting the “pledge” repeated every day by the children at Taft Elementary School’s Success After 6 program sponsored by United Way of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley.
William is featured in a video shown at the local United Way’s annual meeting Thursday, illustrating the progress he has made in school because of Success After 6.
“I work hard, I’m proud to be a Success After 6 kid,” he said to an audience of 400 United Way volunteers, leaders and supporters at The Lake Club.
Success After 6 also illustrates the focus on children and families that United Way’s Community Impact Model initiated several years ago.
While early in its implementation stage, the Community Impact Model is giving children the hope and encouragement they need and deserve, said Mark Wenick, regional president for Chemical Bank, a United Way sponsor.
“It’s working,” said Robert Hannon, president of the local United Way.
Its success is reflected in the $3,002,847 raised during the 2016 financial campaign, which exceeded the goal of $2.8 million.
“The focus on children resonates very well in the community,” said Hannon, who noted that the Success After 6 program will move into four more Youngstown City Schools and Girard in the 2017-2018 school year.
The prime purpose of the annual meeting is to thank and honor volunteers who he said “drive the United Way.”
Awards in numerous categories were presented.
Top 5 workplace campaigns: General Motors Lordstown Complex and United Autoworkers Locals 1112 and 1714; AT&T; Dearing Compressor & Pump Co.; Compco Industries; Youngstown State University; and top foundation gift, Home Savings.
Special awards were: campaign leadership, Phyllis Schaab, ms consultants; impact leadership, Western Reserve Building Trades; dedicated service, Casals de Spa, Compco Industries, The Muransky Companies; Volunteer Excellence, Tom Miller, Tailwind Logistics, Myra Vitto, PNC and YSU Honors College; inaugural Parker McHenry Board Excellence, Parker McHenry; campaign chair, Gary Small, Home Savings; inaugural Rising Star Award, Lucia Schaab, who asked for books for Christmas and donated them to the Kids Without Books Program.