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Community January 24, 2011

YNHH preserves MLK legacy with community grants

In 2009, members of the YNHH Martin Luther King Committee reviewed the hospital’s decade of Martin Luther King birthday celebrations for employees and decided to take the resources normally dedicated to its internal celebration of Dr. King and invest them in the community. The decision has been popular both with employees and the community.

This is the second year that YNHH has awarded high school students and city elementary schools with direct grants for their work in keeping alive the legacy of the slain civil rights leader.

"It is rewarding to find and support the schools and individual students within our community who are keeping alive the work for which Martin Luther King is so admired," said Patricia Worthy, RN, manager, Workforce Diversity.

"Many of our employees are proud that we are helping to keep the dreams of Dr. King alive through city schools and students."

This year’s winners of the hospital’s MLK grants are:

  • $2,000 for Wexler-Grant School for its one-day "Diversity, Respect, Environmental Awareness, Activist and Morality" conference; and
  • $1,000 for John C. Daniels Magnet School for its "Alive and Well in New Haven" project.

This year’s student winners of $1,000 MLK grants are:

  • Maria Arnold, a senior at High School in the Community, for her work at her church pantry, American Red Cross blood drives and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society;
  • Karen Tello, also a senior at High School in the Community, who volunteered for the Haiti relief efforts, Save the Sound Beach clean-up, Easter Seals Fantasy of Lights and food drives; and
  • Denny Johnson, a senior at Riverside Academy, who volunteers at John C. Daniels School where he works with pre-kindergartners and first graders.

"Our Martin Luther King grants allow us to support the teachers and students in our community who are keeping alive the values of Martin Luther King," said Kyle Ballou, administrative director, Community and Government Relations. "Our recipients are truly sowing the seeds for the kind of just and civilized society Dr. King had envisioned and for which he died."

IN PHOTO: Representatives from the schools receiving MLK educational grants recently visited YNHH for the check presentation. Shown are from left, Kyle Ballou; Sondi Jackson, speech pathologist, Wexler-Grant; Holly Smith, teacher, John C. Daniels; and Paul Patton, vice president, Human Resources.

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