NewsFeed @ Youth In Need | January 14, 2019
Annual Gala Less Than Nine Weeks Away
Youth In Need will honor Emerson, the first-ever corporate honoree, along with Board member Jon Lottes and his wife Cara at this year’s Celebration of Youth on March 16, 2019, at Ameristar Casino Resort Spa. Emerson presents the 32nd annual Celebration of Youth gala and auction sponsored by Centene Charitable Foundation.
Help us celebrate!
- Sponsor the event at a wide range of levels from $500 to $10,000.
- Donate goods or services to the event’s silent and live auctions.
- Advertise in the event program that is distributed to more than 500 guests.
- Purchase a table or individual tickets to attend the event.
- Contribute a monetary donation to help underwrite event expenses.
Pat’s Chat: “Life is a Journey…Surrounded by Love”
Jim Braun, Youth In Need’s beloved former CEO who led the agency from 1988-2013, passed away one year ago. Jim chose the above quote to be included in the program at his funeral, along with his life story and personal reflections, so I wanted to share it here as we remember Jim and spend time with our families and friends. Jim had a profound influence on my life, this organization and our community. While greatly missed, his compassionate spirit of service to others lives on at Youth In Need and in my heart.
Jim never took for granted that he was fortunate to have a very close and loving family, which he credited largely for his success in life. It made him especially sensitive to the children and youth served at Youth In Need who sometimes do not have emotional or economic support from their families of origin. In the absence of parental support, many young people build their own support systems (especially LGBTQ youth who are too often forced to leave home). For many, Youth In Need becomes part of their “chosen family.” This was evident at the recent holiday party at the Transitional Living Program group home, where staff and youth spent time together in mutual care and respect, enjoying food and fun. It was also evident in a note Youth In Need received recently via our Facebook page, where a former client wrote that she has successfully overcome drug addiction, and has her own apartment and full-time job: “I just wanted to thank the staff for being a big influence on me…without this program or the kind people involved with it, I’d be dead.”
Because of Jim’s decades of tireless work and passionate commitment, we are here 365 days a year, with encouragement, patience, a sense of humor and a deep belief in the powerful potential that lies in each one of us and the young people we are honored to serve.
“My hope is that when people remember me, they will be reminded of their own mortality, take time to cherish and nurture relationships in their lives, and be mindful to provide kind thoughts, prayers, and meaningful actions to those that struggle without the advantage of loving family and friends.” James A. Braun (January 12, 1948-December 22, 2017)
New Position Added to Management Team
Youth In Need has added a new position to its Executive Management Team (EMT), the team of senior level executives that lead the agency in programs, finance, development and human resources. Senior Inclusion and Equity Advisor, a new position held by Ashwini Kherdekar, is now part of EMT. This is an expansion of Ash’s previous role as Anti-Bias Anti-Racism Coordinator. Responsible for agency-wide inclusion education, Ash will lead the agency’s Diversity Council and the National Conference for Community and Justice Facilitrainer team. Ash also will provide guidance and consultation to staff and supervisors on issues related to inclusion and equity. Having this position on EMT will help ensure that Youth In Need’s work is conducted through a racial equity lens, accountable to people of color and inclusive of all identities.