2017 February

February 24, 2017

GREAT FUTURES START HERE: EXCEPTIONAL HARTSVILLE TEEN
WINS YOUTH OF THE YEAR HONOR
Deriayna Wilson moves to competition at state level

Deriayna attended the competition with her mom.

Hartsville– Congratulations to Deriayna Wilson, from the Hartsville Boys & Girls Club, for competing for and winning the Pee Dee Youth of the Year title on February 18, 2017. She will head to Columbia from April 27-28 to vie with her peers from around the state for the title of South Carolina Youth of the Year.

The other local contestants were Keshon Stovall, 17, a junior at Hemingway High School; Ryan Jackson, 17, in Lake City’s Adult Education program; Aaron Gandy, 16, a sophomore at Wilson High School in Florence, and Erika Arriaga, 17, a junior at Hannah-Pamplico High School.

Deriayna, a sixteen-year-old Florence native, is now a junior at Hartsville High School. She is one of two daughters of a single mom. Her mom has relied on the Boys & Girls Club to keep the two girls safe and productively engaged during the time she is at her full-time job and away from home for work-related travel. Deriayna says, “Keystone Club is my favorite!” This teen program focuses on leadership development, and allows teens to plan and carry out their own activities, including community service projects.

According to Deriayna, “My experience with the Boys & Girls Club has been positive for the last four years. Everything that I have learned has given me additional expertise in learning how to become more focused in my goals. I have also learned to be patient and persistent in pursuing my dreams. I continue to be focused on my school work. I understand the importance of achieving a higher level of education. I want to GET the best for my life and BE the best. I have learned the importance of working within the community, as well as demonstrating leadership skills at school. I will take these learned skills with me when I attend college after graduation.”

Deriayna concludes with this inspiration: “I continue to support my friends and people I meet daily. I wouldn’t trade anything for my experiences at the BGC. It has given me more opportunities than I could ever imagine. Therefore, I will continue to be a motivator for the youth of today.”

To achieve the title of Youth of the Year on any level, Club members must embody the values of leadership and service; academic excellence; and healthy lifestyles. They should exemplify the critical impact that Boys & Girls Clubs have on the lives of young people. Being named Youth of the Year is the highest honor a Boys & Girls Club member can receive. As BGCA’s premier youth recognition program, Youth of the Year recognizes outstanding contributions to a member’s family, school, community and Boys & Girls Club, as well as overcoming personal challenges and obstacles. Youth of the Year encourages Club members to reach their full potential by achieving academic success, leading healthy lifestyles and contributing to their communities. Each year’s honorees are living proof that great futures start at Boys & Girls Clubs.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of the Pee Dee Area
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Pee Dee Area (http://bgcpda.org) provides daily programs and services to more than 3,000 young people each year. At six locations throughout the region, Clubs are open every weekday after school and throughout the summer, keeping youth active and safe. For more information about local Clubs, call (843) 662-1142, or visit bgcpda.org.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, headquartered in Atlanta, (www.bgca.org) has enabled young people, especially those who need Clubs most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,200 Boys & Girls Clubs serve nearly four million young people through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs can be found throughout the country and on U.S. military installations worldwide, providing young people 6-18 years old with guidance-oriented character development programs conducted by trained, professional staff. In a recent Harris Survey of alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their lives.


 

BGCPDA ~ PO Box 93 ~ Florence, SC 29503 ~ 843-662-1142