Early each year, the anticipation grows among members, families, and staff at the Boys & Girls Club of the Sandhills wondering who will be named Youth of the Year. The Youth of the Year Program honors the nation’s most awe-inspiring young people on their path to great futures and encourages all kids to lead, succeed, and inspire.
For our 2021 Youth of the Year, Ke’ Ziah Simpson, it was her second attempt to earn the title. She shared that “the experience showed me that I could go beyond the Club”. In fact, the Pinecrest Junior is hoping to go on to study Sports Medicine after graduation from high school.
Due to concerns from the spread of COVID, this year’s Great Futures Youth of the Year Celebration will be virtual once again. It will be livestreamed on Thursday, February 17th starting at 6:30pm via the event site at one.bidpal.net/greatfutures21. Elliotts on Linden is preparing a special meal for virtual attendees of this year’s Great Futures Celebration once again this year.
“Youth of the Year is a program that gives candidates a chance to feature the three Boys & Girls Club outcome areas of Good Character, Healthy Lifestyles and Academic Success”, according to Germann Bostic, Director of the Baxter Teen Center. He adds, “It’s very special to see each candidate talk about their life, along with issues and obstacles that many of our young people face”.
This year, three outstanding teens will vie for the prestigious title of our Boys & Girls Club of the Sandhills Youth of the Year. Kanaiya Terry, Ja’Torian Medley, and Tamia McKinnon. Each candidate has met the demanding criteria for the Youth of the Year awards, including active Club involvement, academic success, and community service. In addition, all have wonderful accomplishments to celebrate outside of the Club, from dance to sports to the honor roll!
The 2022 Youth of the Year winner receives a laptop courtesy of Duke Energy’s sponsorship of the event and will go on to contend for the North Carolina Youth of the Year title and a $2,500 college scholarship from Boys & Girls Clubs of America. From there, the winner will contend for the title of Southeast Regional Youth of the Year and additional scholarship dollars. Six finalists will advance to vie for the title of Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Youth of the Year.
To support the great futures of youth in Moore County, you can reserve your delicious dinner from Elliotts online at one.bidpal.net/greatfutures21 . Meals will be available for pick up from the Boys & Girls Club of the Sandhills’ Baxter Teen Center (160 Memorial Park Court, Southern Pines) between 4:15-6:15 on Thursday, February 17th. Then, tune in for the Great Futures Celebration and announcement of the 2022 Boys & Girls Club of the Sandhills Youth of the Year!