Nothing brings out the school spirit like Homecoming! This year’s Homecoming Theme was: “Welcome to the Jungle!” PVYC represented well at the Homecoming Parade this year with our chinese-dragon-esque snake — straight out of the jungle! Our students did a great job slithering through the parade route! So well, that for the second year in a row, PVYC won 1st place in the Community Organization category! It was a beautiful night filled with fun and community spirit. Way to go PVYC! It’s always a great day to be a Ram! (Or in this case, snake!)
Our last big event for the summer was Staycation 2016!! We opted to stick around and explore some of the great things our area has to offer instead of skipping town. We started off Staycation 2016 with a Spikes game — it was hot, but lots of fun! After the game, we cooled down at the movies with popcorn, sodas and the latest Ice Age movie. We later checked in to the Ramada and enjoyed their amenities… like the pool!! Our students were tired, but managed to put away a good number of Domino’s Pizzas before the night was over. The next day we split into teams and went on an amazing race-style scavenger hunt that took us all over town. It was a fun way to end an awesome summer!
Our students piled in the van and left the valley for the day and headed to Baltimore. We spent the day at the National Aquarium, exploring all the mysteries that the sea has to offer with unique and sometimes terrifying displays. There were hand-on experiences to be had for those who had the courage to stick their hands in the water! After a fun dinner out, we headed back to home-sweet-home.
This year our students had the life-changing opportunity to attend the LIFE 2016 conference in Kansas City, MO.
Christian Speakers – Our students had the incredible opportunity to hear words of life and wisdom from some of the most inspired Christian leaders of today. Francis Chan, Jefferson Bethke, John Stumbo, and Tim Meier all spoke Spirit-filled words of life and wisdom into our teens.
Christian Artists – Jordan Howerton Band, Trace Bundy, Micah Bournes, Justin Flom, About A Mile, Sojourner. God has gifted each of these people/bands with awesome talent! We were so blessed to have had the opportunity to experience their gifts and talents throughout the week at LIFE.
Seminar Speakers – All of our teens had the opportunity to choose from a variety of speakers during two separate sessions each day on a variety of topics that are relevant to the struggles and issues they deal with today. Topics included: Reading the Bible as a narrative, Creative writing as a spiritual discipline, What are you going to be when you grow up? Christ, Creation & Science….Do we need all three? As well as some more controversial topics, like: Loving my gay friend, Climbing out of the black hole of depression, Between broken and beauty; the story of former stripper, Harmony Dust. These speakers were incredible. No matter where our teens are in their walk with God, there was something for them each day to learn.
Renew the City Community Service – Our students took an afternoon to serve in the community as well. Hey spent hours cleaning out a tree row, cutting and dragging brush, picking up garbage and working alongside other teens to help restore a Kansas City park area to its former glory! And it was hot!!
Momentum 5K – Our teens had an opportunity to run a 5K. The funds raised went toward the ministry of a brand new C&MA church that will launch in Kansas City in 2016.
Beyond Ourselves, LIFE Offering – Our teens also had the opportunity to give to help others. The LIFE offering was taken this year to help Syrian Refugees. Our teens learned about the struggles and hardships these refugees are facing and how their sacrificial giving can help.
From one of our students:
“Life meant to me a lot of things. It showed me lots of new things and challenges that I need in my life. It also showed me that there are people like me out there, teens struggling with there faith. Life meant that I could be myself around total Jesus freaks like me!!”
Our students have so many fun memories from this trip! Goofy and silly ones from our long bus ride, fun times with friends, making new friends, as well as serious, life-changing memories about how God used this time to speak to their heart, give them a new direction, or convict them of something in their life that needs to change. This trip may well have been a changing-point in a teen’s life, a commitment that will lead to lasting change and faith in Jesus.
Summer started off with a bang with our first event of the season…..ServeCamp 2016! We had 42 students who came together to serve Penns Valley. There were many projects to do, from hard labor to cooking meals for deserving families, everyone had a job to do and they did it well! We had great worship, speakers and team-building time at Krislund Camp. We loved serving our Penns Valley community — we wouldn’t want to live anywhere else!
Four local non-profits received a combined total of just over $5,000 in grant money from a group of high school students in Centre Foundation’s new program, Centre PACT – Philanthropic Actions Created by Teens.
“Since September, these amazing students have rolled up their sleeves and learned about philanthropy in a very hands-on way, learning everything from granting to fundraising,” said Molly Kunkel, Executive Director at Centre Foundation. “They have made such an impact, and in the areas that really speak to them. It’s been so inspiring to watch these young philanthropists grow during the course of this program.”
After creating their own grant application process and putting out a request for proposal, the students reviewed the applications. Finalist organizations received a site visit from a cohort of the students so that they could view the program up close, see the impact, and ask the staff questions.
“The grant application process and site visits allowed the students to learn more about the nuts and bolts of granting, as well as provided them with a window into how non-profits operate,” explained Kunkel.
The students began the year with a $1,000 granting pool provided by Centre Foundation, but quickly realized their appetite for impact was much larger. So, they began a prospecting campaign that ultimately raised $4,025 from 18 community supporters.
“The students’ dedication to expanding their impact was commendable, allowing them to make grants to all four of their finalist organizations,” said Kunkel.
Students, parents, community supporters, and non-profit representatives were on hand for a check presentation party, which also marked the end of the program’s successful pilot year.
Jaia Clingham-David gave an overview of the Centre PACT program year. Then, Zoe Small presented the first check to Centre County Library & Historical Museum’s Lisa Erickson: $687.50 for a collection of LGBTQ books and college preparatory materials.
Joey and Nick Feffer presented $1,187.50 to Theresa Mast of Centre County’s YMCA for the Moshannon Valley’s “Aspire Program,” an alternative physical education credit course for students who are bullied or cannot otherwise complete gym class and do not want to receive a failing grade.
Bella DiNallo and Wylie McCullough presented $1,512.50 to Marissa Vicere of the Jana Marie Foundation for their Resilience Training program, which teaches students and adults how to identify unhealthy stress levels in adolescents and make healthy recommendations.
Hope Bodenschatz presented $1,637.50 to the Penns Valley Youth Center’s Darren Narber. The funds will help PVYC continue to provide a fun, safe, and welcoming place for teenagers to come after school, receive homework help, provide physical activity, healthy snacks, and build relationships with peers and adults.
High School students from across Centre County are encouraged to apply to join the Centre PACT program, which aims to give participants a hands-on, student-led look at philanthropy, as well as learn about themselves, each other, and Centre County. Fall recruitment will begin as schools reopen in the fall. For more information, please visit Centre-Foundation.org or contact Irene Miller, Development & Events Coordinator (814.237.6229 | firstname.lastname@example.org).
PVYC partnered with Centre Foundation during this year’s Centre Gives event. PVYC hosted an informal dinner event at the famed Round Barn in Centre Hall. Friends of PVYC came out to this historic icon for a picnic style dinner and to donate $25 or more. We had no idea this event would raise over $28,000.00 for the Penns Valley Youth Center! If you gave to PVYC during this event, thank you, thank you, thank you! We were blessed beyond all we could ask or imagine!
This year’s event was a huge success! It was a great night of fun and laughter as the community came out to support the Penns Valley Youth Center.
Event Donations: $31,005 (this includes business and family sponsorships paid to date, silent and live auctions, and in-kind donations on the night of the event)
New Or Increased Monthly Donations: $4,800 annually ($400 per month in new giving)
New Or Increased Annual Donations: $1,500
Total Attributable Benefit Auction Giving: $37,305
In addition, we received seven pledge cards for the CentreGIVES event on May 3rd, totaling an additional $2,925.
Each of these monies go to support the operations of PVYC, from buying all of the great food that is served each day, keeping the facilities functioning, providing scholarships to students who can’t afford to participate in camps and retreats, etc. Each dollar raised is used to support the mission of providing hope, worth and friendship to 6th through 12th graders in Penns Valley.
Thank you to each of you who helped out, donated, attended, prayed for or participated in some way! Without your efforts and contributions, PVYC wouldn’t be possible!