The 5th Annual C.H.O.I.C.E. Awareness and Fundraising Event was held on March 1st, 2013 at the St. Michael Orthodox Church with a large crowd of C.H.O.I.C.E. supporters, donors, community leaders and friends.
We would like to thank our corporate sponsors for supporting this worthwhile event:
MR / Logic Path Financial Consulting, LLC
Ratterman Funeral Home
Barber, Banaszynski, Hiatt – Attorneys at Law
Thelma Sias and Stephen P. Adams – Milwaukee, WI
Again, thank you for your continued support.
Our keynote speaker, Congressman John Yarmuth‘s speech was inspirational. See the entire speech below.
The evening’s highlights included a TJMAXX Fashion Show with new, upcoming and stylish fashion. The fashion show was sponsored by TJMAXX on Taylorsville Road and featured C.H.O.I.C.E. participant and their parent’s models. In addition, the Meyzeek Middle School Step Team gave us a rousing performance and had attendees on their feet, clapping marvelously at their unique stepping techniques.
Our guest were wonderful, and the night was a family affair! Guest enjoyed Italian inspired food catered by Jonny V’s Catering. Jonny V’s, yet another year did an exceptional job.
Our event was a tremendous success due, in part, to the giving hearts of our guest, sponsors, donors and other supporters. The C.H.O.I.C.E. family is appreciative! Thank you volunteers and administrative team.
Donations can be made anytime. Just go to our website: www.choicelouisville.org and hit the “Donate” button.
And remember, The C.H.O.I.C.E. is yours, make the right one.
Remarks by Congressman John Yarmuth
C.H.O.I.C.E. Annual Awareness Event
March 1, 2013
Thank you for inviting me to be here this evening. Thanks to all the parents and members of the CHOICE high school mentoring program for being here, as well as all the leaders from the business and faith-based communities I see here tonight.
You don’t need me to remind you how tough this can be. The distractions are limitless, with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube videos of cats doing hilarious things. I’m of course talking to the parents here.
But on top of all those distractions, there’s something more menacing out there that’s also competing for young people’s attention. And whether it’s drugs and alcohol or other nefarious activity, the presence of negative influences on our young people is one of the most pervasive challenges we face as a community.
That is why choices matter. The choices you make as a young person are yours for your entire life. You own them now, and you will own them in the future. And by the way, anything you post on Facebook will also follow you into the future. So be careful.
CHOICE is a fitting name, because each young person who is part of this program has made a critical first decision: To take control of your lives and eliminate negative influences. You have chosen to make an investment in yourself, your future, and your community.
A strong future first needs a foundation, and this program is a cornerstone. It helps you to prioritize yourself above outside influences.
It provides the skills and lessons to help you tackle unforeseen challenges and be the essential positive influence in your school communities and neighborhoods.
Now, these are all very important reasons to avoid negative influences in your lives, and I hope I’ve been able to convey that. The very fact that you’re involved in CHOICE gives me a lot of confidence.
But there’s one more thing: Dollars.
1.3 million students drop out of high school every year across our country. Each of those students can expect to make $10,000 less a year than their peers who finish high school.
And it gets worse: A high-school dropout will earn $35,000 less a year than his or her counterpart with a bachelor’s degree. That’s $35,000 a year, every year.
Dropping out is also a devastating cost to our nation. We pay close to $4 billion a year just in remediation costs for those who don’t finish school. And we lose out on the economic benefits of lifetime incomes of more than $329 billion.
I want to be clear: I have every confidence that each of you in this room tonight is headed toward an exemplary college career and a good job of your choice. And I truly believe I am looking at a roomful of future community leaders.
I encourage you to think of CHOICE not just as an opportunity but also a responsibility. Take what you’ve learned here and pay it forward. It is the responsibility of each one of us to practice, promote, and reinforce healthy life choices to better our community and our country.
I know we can count on you. I have every confidence that each of you will not just meet your expectations – you will exceed them.
I join your family, friends, and the CHOICE staff and volunteers in applauding your efforts. You are a great representative for your peers and for our community, and I will continue to do everything I can in Congress to help make sure you have the support and resources you need to build strong futures.
Thank you for doing your part to make Louisville the place we love to call home. I wish you nothing but success.