STTAC and the 33rd Chemung County Youth Bureau Awards
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Chemung County hands out awards for youth services
Chemung County honored several individuals and organizations Wednesday for their contributions to youth services in the county.
County Executive Tom Santulli and Youth Bureau Director Bob Harris presented honors at the 33rd annual Awards Reception at the Big Flats Community Center.
The Donahoe Award, given annually to an adult to recognize outstanding contributions to youths and families in the community, was presented to a woman who has spent 46 years working in the health education field.
Barb VanDine started as a middle school health education teacher in the Elmira City School District and continued in that capacity until her retirement in 2004. Since she retired, VanDine has continued to remain active with schools and youths.
She has been a member of the Eat Well Play Hard Grant Committee, the YWCA Youth Summit Committee, the Southern Tier Tobacco Awareness Community Partnership, the Elmira City School District Student Support Network, Southern Tier AIDS Task Force, the Adolescent Chemical Dependency Coalition, the Creating Healthy Places Coalition and other groups.
The Donahoe Award was established in 1984 and is named for its first recipient, Judge Daniel J. Donahoe.
The youth bureau handed out several other awards at Wednesday's banquet:
- The Summer Cohesion Synergy Award: This award recognizes an individual, group or organization that has best demonstrated or exemplified the overall true meaning of partnership and collaboration as it impacts the Chemung County Summer Cohesion Program. This year's award was presented to Tanglewood Nature Center for its efforts to educate people about the natural world.
- The Program Excellence Award: This award recognizes the special efforts of local youth service projects, programs and events. The 2016 award was presented to the Glove House Evening Reporting Center Program, which works with several county agencies to provide structured after-school and evening supervision for at-risk youths in an environment that is safe, secure and supportive.
- The Polly Sanders Youth Scholarship: This award honors youths who have made a unique or significant contribution to the community or who have overcome a major obstacle in their personal life. Two $750 scholarships were awarded to Elmira High School seniors Hali Gunderman and Izzie Moran. Gunderman was recognized for several years of volunteer work and community involvement, and Moran was honored for overcoming challenges in her life and for her involvement in several organizations.