On Feb. 11, Lakeside Junior High School Principal John Green dressed in the school’s gator mascot costume and walked a mile down Kingsley Avenue, then took a leap into Club Continental’s unheated swimming pool.
He performed the stunt to celebrate his students’ willingness to give back to the community by raising $5,000 for Dreams Come True.
The money will go toward funding the Disney Cruise Dream of 3-year-old Megan Coleman from Keystone Heights.
Megan and her family will leave for their cruise in April.
West Nassau High School students wins Rotary contest
Jolene Stubbings, a senior at West Nassau High School, competed against five other area high school seniors to win first place in the 2015 Rotary Oratory Competition. Abby Murphy of Creekside High School in St. Johns County finished second.
Stubbings, who spoke on the topic of financial literacy, won $4,600 in scholarship funds — a $500 scholarship by winning her regional competition, $4,000 for first place in the finals and a $100 college starter savings account from 121 Financial Credit Union.
Murphy took home $2,600.
The Rotary Oratory Competition, a project by the Rotary Club of South Jacksonville, started with competition at 25 high schools. Six regionals were conducted to narrow the field of competitors to six.
The finals were at the University of North Florida before a crowd of about 200 people. The other finalists were Olivia Ade of Episcopal School of Jacksonville, Dwight James of Douglas Anderson School of the Arts, Ryan Merrill of Orange Park High School and Duneshka Moran-Deleon from Baldwin High School.
121 Financial was the title sponsor of the event, the University of Florida Proton Therapy Institute was the regional sponsor and Sawgrass Asset Management was the runner-up scholarship sponsor.
For information on the Southside Rotary speech project, email [email protected].
Justice Coalition breakfast is Thursday at First Baptist Church
The 13th annual Together We Can Campaign Breakfast will begin at 7 a.m. Thursday at First Baptist Church of Jacksonville.
State Attorney Angela Corey and sheriffs from counties around the First Coast will attend. Individual tickets may be purchased for $25 each.
The annual breakfast is an important fundraiser for the Justice Coalition to support the mission of assisting innocent victims of violent crimes.
CSX is the title sponsor, Michael Ward and Madden Advisory Services are platinum sponsors and Ernie Palmer Toyota is a silver sponsor.
Founded in 1995, the Justice Coalition is an organization seeking rights for victims in the criminal justice system. The coalition keeps the public informed and involved through its monthly newspaper, Justice Coalition’s Victims’ Advocate.
For more information, visit justicecoalition.org.
Bean will lead program discussion for caregivers
The National Alliance for Caregiving has selected the Caregiver Coalition of Northeast Florida as one of eight grant recipients to raise awareness about the needs of working caregivers.
The Caregiver Coalition of Northeast Florida has invited state Sen. Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach, to be its “Caregiving Champion.” Bean will guide a panel discussion about the issues working caregivers face and possible solutions in “Building a Culture of Care for Tomorrow’s Workforce,” at 5 p.m. Monday at WJCT Public Broadcasting, 100 Festival Park Ave.
About 44 million unpaid caregivers provide care to people 50 years and older; 75 percent of those caregivers also are employed.
The cost of caregiving to U.S-based employers is estimated to be as much as $34 billion per year. Providing care is reported to keep 24 percent of employees from working more than they currently are and causes employee-caregivers to miss on average 6.6 work days per year.
“We appreciate Sen. Bean for his leadership of this program concerning working caregivers,” said Toula Wootan, community development officer at Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, the Coalition’s founding organization. “His work in safeguarding the health and well-being of those who care for loved ones is tremendously important to our community.”
Bean will moderate the discussion with panelists Jason Altmire, senior vice president, public policy and community engagement, Florida Blue; Francine Parfitt, director, Memory Disorders Clinic, Mayo Clinic Florida; and Terri Barton, executive director, Aging True Community Senior Services.
The Caregiving Champions program is supported by Pfizer Inc. and Eli Lilly and Co. It allows state and local caregiving organizations to recognize individuals who, in their capacity as elected officials or civic leaders, raise awareness of the challenges facing family caregivers and advocate on their behalf. The Caregiver Coalition of Northeast Florida received a $1,500 grant to support the initiative.
Working caregivers may attend the free program by calling (904) 407-6998.
Established in 2008 by Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, the Caregiver Coalition is an alliance of health care, civic and social-service organizations.
L’Arche Harbor House tournament tees off March 9
L’Arche Harbor House has begun to plan the 25th edition of its annual golf tournament, which will take place March 9 at Timuquana Golf Course.
In honor of the silver anniversary of the event, Synovus Bank of Jacksonville has signed on as the title sponsor.
“The L’Arche commitment to personal relationships mirrors the Synovus commitment to personal relationships,” said Damon Olinto, president and CEO of Synovus Bank of Jacksonville. “As a bank that has always been a part of the community, partnering with an organization that defines community and enhances the quality of our entire community is perfectly in line with our core principles.”
Over the past 25 years, the L’Arche Golf Classic has supported the services offered to people with intellectual and physical disabilities by L’Arche Harbor House, including five family-style homes, the Blanchart Community Center and the L’Arche Rainbow Workshop Day Program.
L’Arche recently opened a Rainbow Workshop to include more people with intellectual and physical disabilities who wish to have meaningful work and therapeutic activities.
For more information about the L’Arche 25th Anniversary Golf Classic, contact Mike Belle at (904) 721-5992 or email [email protected].
Walk to Defeat ALS March 28
On March 28, more than 1,000 people are expected to gather at Seven Bridges/Tinseltown to join the fight to find a cure for a deadly illness. ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, progressively paralyzes its victims, attacking nerve cells and pathways in the brain or spinal cord. The disease has no known cause or cure.
Wheelchair-bound patients along with their families and friends will walk 2 miles in the Walk to Defeat ALS.
Many who walk have a loved one who is fighting the deadly disease. Others walk in memory of someone who has lost the battle. Many people, without any personal connection, walk out of concern for those who are suffering.
The walk is The ALS Association’s signature event and all funds directly support research, programs and patient care. Last year, the events in Florida raised almost $1.5 million.
All interested walkers should call (888) 257-1717, or register online at WalktoDefeatALS.org.