King Street Center recognized five key awardees with the 2021 High Five Award, an annual appreciation of donors, volunteers, staff, youth, and community partners who went “above and beyond” to support the mission of King Street Center.
Andrew and Amy Davis, of Jericho, serve as mentors, tutors, and used to even bring their therapy dog into the Preschool classroom at the center. They received appreciation from their mentee, Bibash Ramtel, for reading, swimming, kayaking, and exploring new places together.
Long-time donor, Mentor Vermont, was represented by their Executive Director, Chad Butt. Mentor Vermont distributes grants to mentoring agencies around the state, as well as providing year-round training and support in best-practices. This year’s grant, exceeding $14,000, helped King Street Center to provide truly individualized support to mentor pairs during the height of the pandemic, as well as to help explore respectful volunteer relationships regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion.
ECHO, Leahy Center for Lake Champlain received a High Five Award for creating exceptional learning opportunities during private group visits during COVID-19. Keeping health and safety in mind, ECHO provided much-needed outings for kids to stretch their bodies, to spark their minds, and to give them some badly needed space. These field trips were already a comfortable space for King Street Center kids as ECHO has long made the museum accessible to children and their families through collaborative visits and affordable memberships.
Vicky Smith recently retired as the Executive Director of King Street Center. She was applauded with the High Five recognition for staff. She served for over 27 years at the center, first as Program Director and then Executive Director. Hawa and Ahmed Adan, both King Street Center alumni, spoke on behalf of the many youth who were part of programs during Vicky’s tenure. They shared stories of the many opportunities made available to them, but specifically of Vicky’s help in paving the way to Champlain College where Ahmed is currently a student and Hawa is a recent graduate.
Finally, King Street Center Junior Camp Counselors received the 2021 High Five Award for youth. Burlington High School students, Emmalynn Peterson, Asha Hussein, Bree McDonald, Filibin Awikir brought extra helping hands, energy, patience, and engagement to King Street Center’s summer camp. These positions were created to create job opportunities for King Street Center youth and to provide strong role models for campers. Asha said, “It was nice to feel appreciated by my community.”
Long-time friend and supporter, Dealer.com, generously sponsored this year’s High Five event.