Happy New Year Fund Raiser!
Our annual Chinese New Year Celebration Chinese New Year/ Youth Programs Benefit was a wonderful and very successful evening.
Banners announcing welcome and heralding the Chinese year of the horse greeted more than 50 guests as they entered the Larr’s home on Fieldstone Road. Guests entered a festive setting of colorful Chinese decor and a delicious array of dim sum. As has become the norm for our annual post-holiday event, the house was filled with people of a wide array of political persuasions resulting in fascinating conversations everywhere one turned. The highlight of the evening was our guest Congressman Eliot Engel. He not only spoke well and informatively but lead an engaging discussion of the issues facing our region and the nation.
The remainder of the evening featured a relaxed gathering where the congressman had the chance to meet and talk with our members and friends in a relaxed atmosphere. In keeping with the mission of the League, this was an entirely non-partisan event.
All donations for this event are directed to the League's Youth Programs and scholarships. They are tax deductible.
Tools For Change
As we celebrate this month the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I am reminded that he once remarked that "all men are caught up in an inescapable network of mutuality." It is not often that in our separate, but inescapably linked, communities there is a program that has been bringing together high school students from three local high schools, Blind Brook, Port Chester, and Rye Neck for the past five years and now wants to include students from Rye City High School. That program is Tools For Change (http://www.tools4changeseminar.com/. The League of Women Voters of Rye, Rye Brook and Port Chester has been a program sponsor from its beginning, and I am writing this letter as a member of the League’s Board of Directors.
The program, focuses teenagers from diverse backgrounds to conduct research, analyze and solve community problems. Dr. William Tobin from Duke University teaches the seminar. As Dr. Tobin has written, "tools grows young people who not only possess disciplined analytical and interpretive skills, as well as empathy and wisdom, but can bring these traits to bear on local challenges that have national and global dimensions. The focus of Tools is not to transmit knowledge, but instead to teach a style for engaging the world so that new and existing knowledge and data can be productively organized, analyzed and used." The program is multi-faceted and has been bringing together students and teachers, parents, and school board members from Port Chester, Rye Neck, and Blind Brook.
Dr. Tobin is anxious to have students from Rye City to join the seminar that is beginning this February. (Interested students, parents and/or community members can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Funding for the program is through a public-private partnership. Public donors have included the Town of Rye, Building Community Bridges/One World and, this year, the County of Westchester. Funding is always difficult and the public's help is encouraged and needed if this worthwhile program is to continue. There have been private donations, both through the crowd sourcing website: IncitED and through the League of Women Voters Educational Foundation, a tax deductible 501(c)3 organization. Donating through the League can be easily accomplished by clicking the DONATE button above or by mail to P.O. Box 194, Rye, NY 10580.
Volunteers are also needed, as chaperons and in other capacities. This worthwhile program is a "two way street," benefiting not only the students but the adults who are so much a part of it. Those who wish to give of their time may also contact the League through the website or by mail.