A national nonprofit founded in 1992

Hartford Courant: YMCA of Greater Hartford Celebrates East Hartford Y-BELL Power Scholars Academy Graduates

Image removed.
Photo courtesy of Harold Sparrow, President & CEO of the YMCA of Greater Hartford

Contributed & published on August 18, 2015

The YMCA of Greater Hartford was recently joined by Representative Jeffrey Currey, Mayor Marcia Leclerc, local school officials, representatives of Comcast and families to honor 100 East Hartford students for their successful completion of the Y-BELL Power Scholars Academy. During the ceremony, Comcast announced a $10,000 grant which will be used for Y-BELL, Y-Achievers, and YMCA Celebrates Champions programs and events. Also, one student with perfect attendance was the recipient of a lap-top computer, courtesy of Comcast.

Power Scholars Academy, which has now completed its third year in Hartford and second year in East Hartford, is a six-week summer program for youth in kindergarten through grade 5 that serves to mitigate summer learning loss by providing underserved youth with structured academic and enrichment activities. Students focus on math and reading, as well as enrichment activities that include STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), health and fitness (e.g., yoga, nutrition, and hygiene), creative arts (e.g., drama and dance), and educational field trips which provide unique educational experiences that may not otherwise be available to them. The Power Scholars Academy also hosts Mentor Days, wherein youth participate in college and career-oriented presentations, community service projects, and visits by community leaders who visit the program to talk about their professions and inspire scholars to pursue excellence.

The Power Scholars Academy curriculum is based on the Project-Based Learning model, which fosters student engagement and provides hands-on learning opportunities. Certified teachers, along with highly-qualified enrichment teachers, are hired to facilitate instruction and program activities. The Power Scholars Academy's holistic approach promotes academic achievement, goal setting, and personal development, which youth are able to sustain during the academic year.

"Comcast is a long-standing supporter of the YMCA's commitment to ensure that all children, regardless of financial circumstance, have access to programs and experiences that help them become strong, active learners and achieve their fullest potential." said Harold Sparrow, President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Hartford. "We thank Comcast for its support not only of the Power Scholars Academy, but for Y programs that help our young people return to school with the tools to succeed."

"Comcast is committed to promoting community service, expanding digital literacy, and developing tomorrow's leaders, all of which are elements in this program," said Kristen Roberts, Vice President of Public Relations and Community Investment for Comcast's Western New England Region, which is headquartered in Berlin. "We've been proud to work with the YMCA of Greater Hartford on a number of initiatives over the years and are pleased to provide this grant to help them continue the great work they do."

About YMCA of Greater Hartford
The YMCA of Greater Hartford is a non- profit 501 (c) (3) charitable organization established in 1852 and is one of the nation's oldest YMCA's. The YMCA of Greater Hartford builds strong communities by helping individuals reach their fullest potential through transformative programs that promote Youth Development, Healthy Living and Social Responsibility. We help people reach their fullest potential by: putting a caring adult in the presence of every child; being good stewards of the resources entrusted to us; and working in partnership to eliminate the disparities in health and education. In 2014 the YMCA of Greater Hartford served more than 118,000 people, including 66,000 children, in 52 towns and cities throughout the Capital Region. YMCA programs put the values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility into practice to build healthy spirit, mind and body for all participants. Ghymca.org

About Comcast Corporation
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is a global media and technology company with two primary businesses, Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal. Comcast Cable is the nation's largest video, high-speed Internet and phone provider to residential customers under the XFINITY brand and also provides these services to businesses. NBCUniversal operates news, entertainment and sports cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, television production operations, television station groups, Universal Pictures and Universal Parks and Resorts. Visit www.comcastcorporation.com for more information.

About Comcast in Connecticut:
Comcast is committed to providing an unparalleled entertainment experience to residents and businesses in the 83 communities the company serves in Connecticut. Comcast's Western New England Region, which includes five states, is headquartered in Berlin, Connecticut, and customers are served by a team of over 1,200 Connecticut employees. Comcast also boasts a call center in Enfield, Connecticut, service centers throughout the state, and six state-of-the-art Xfinity Service Centers where customers can experience Comcast's Xfinity products and services firsthand. Comcast's popular Xfinity brand is also featured on the Xfinity Theatre, one of Hartford's premier music venues. The company helps to strengthen the communities where its customers and employees live and work by supporting local nonprofit organizations. In 2014, Comcast provided more than $1.3 million to community partners in the state, in the form of Comcast Foundation grants, sponsorships, volunteer hours, courtesy services and in-kind donations.

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