Celebration Honors the 2016 Hands-on Heroes and Champions of Youth!
(San Luis Obispo, CA – April 20th, 2016) Last night, San Luis Obispo County once again showed its continued dedication to the care of its youngest citizens, with a wonderful turnout to honor the 2016 Hands-on Heroes and Champions of Youth!
More than 200 people gathered for an awards dinner at Mountainbrook Community Church, where First 5 SLO County Commission Chair Bruce Gibson opened the evening, by applauding our local communities’ collective commitment to children and youth – as our greatest asset and highest priority.
KSBY News Anchor Dan Shadwell emceed the event, which included performances by members of Central Coast Gymnastics, and “A Big Dream in a Small Person,” a theater and dance group from Paso Robles.
Winners and nominees received tributes from Congresswoman Lois Capps, the offices of Senator Bill Monning, Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian, SLO County Board of Supervisors, First 5 SLO County, Early Learning for All and the Asset Development Network.
2016 Hands-on Heroes Winners (focused on 0-5 year olds):
Children’s Health Hero: Olga Mireles, Lactation Consultant/Registered Nurse, Dignity Health
Family Support: Marilu Gomez, School Readiness Coordinator, Georgia Brown Elementary
Center-Based Early Care & Education Hero: Kari Applegate, Master Teacher, Cal Poly Preschool Learning Lab
Family Child Care Hero: Carmen Flores, Director, Genesis Family Child Care
Volunteer: Vicki Cyr & Kathy Tyree, Oceano Library Branch Manager and Community Volunteer
2016 Champions of Youth (focused on all ages):
Champion of Youth (Youth): Katie Scarry, Youth Leader/Advocate with CAPSLO
Champion of Youth (Adult): Jose Rangel, Soccer Coach, San Luis Obispo County
Champion of Youth (Adult): Betian Webb, Director of Resident Services, Paso Robles Housing Authority
The evening also included a surprise “Champion for Children” Award presented to the volunteer organization Central Coast Funds for Children.
The event was held amidst a number of other community activities marking April as Month of the Child and Child Abuse Prevention Month, including “Wear Blue Day” for Child Abuse Prevention Efforts and a county-wide Children’s Day in the Plaza as other family-focused local community events.
Please join us in congratulating our winners!
The Hands-on Heroes Awards Program is a joint project of First 5 SLO County and Early Learning for All (ELFA). The Champions of Youth awards are organized by the Asset Development Network.
Sponsors and supporting agencies include the Center for Family Strengthening, the San Luis Obispo County Child Care Planning Council, the Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County, Asset Development Network, SLO County Board of Supervisors, Coast Hills Federal Credit Union, Heritage Oaks Bank, Cuesta College, the Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo County, the Paso Robles Youth Arts Foundation and KSBY-TV.