The Saugerties Community Youth Awards Committee recognizes and rewards the young citizens of the Saugerties area who are “caught” making good choices and doing good deeds. The goal is to reinforce positive behavior in youth and to instill community awareness of the positive contributions by these young citizens.
The Saugerties Youth Awards concept, developed by SAGE (Saugerties is About Growth Experiences), was adopted by the town and village governments, which have teamed up with Saugerties Central School District, the Saugerties unit of Boys & Girls Club and Family of Woodstock to make this program a reality. Nominations come from these groups as well as community organizations and individuals. Nomination forms may be found at town and village offices and websites.
At the Town Board meeting held on March 21, Dakota DeGroat, 12, received his award for helping others. He was nominated by his teacher, Allyson DeCicco, who described Dakota as “a truly kind young boy who will go out of his way to help others. He will give up his seat if someone needs to sit or he will share his school supplies with another student who doesn’t have anything. If he notices an adult is in need of assistance, he will be the first one to lend a helping hand. Dakota displays kindness without any reminders,” adding that she is “truly grateful to have Dakota in her class.”
Isabelle Chauncey, 13, was nominated by Hope Antonelli, advisor to the Builder’s Club at Saugerties Junior High School. “Isabelle has been a member of Builder’s Club for two years; this year she is an officer. Even though she wanted to be an officer last year, and was not, it did not hamper her dedication and enthusiasm. She attended every event, worked every bake sale and was consistently asking me what she needed done. Isabelle is a kind, good-hearted young lady.”
Ariana Sprague, 13, was also nominated by Hope Antonelli. “Ariana has been in Builder’s Club at the Junior High for two years. She is not an officer, but she puts forth the effort of one. She is always asking what else she can do. Ariana has participated in every event, and is a role model to the younger members.”
Audrey Lang, 9, was nominated by Mady Pulilli of the Boys & Girls Club. “Audrey started a club in Cahill Elementary School called the ‘Stop Bullying Club.’ Audrey said that she first thought of the club in first grade, and now two years later, her idea has come to life.” In addition to being active in school programs such as Knitting Club and Spanish Club, Lang is a member of the Boys & Girls Club performance program, Royals. “She is a shining example to all of the club’s members of what you can achieve when you are persistent with your dreams. Audrey says her goal for the future is for all schools to start ‘Stop Bullying Clubs’ around the world.” Congratulations to Dakota, Isabelle, Ariana and Audrey.