Run It! was started by Alina Tsouristakis, a graduate of CSH and a founding member of the Barat Foundation. Childhood obesity is a major issue in the United States, and Run It! hopes to address this issue by educating children in public schools. Once a week, volunteers teach the children at P.S. 41 in the Bronx about making healthy decisions regarding food and exercise. Each volunteer acts as a role model to the children, teaching them that healthy food can be delicious and exercise can be fun. The students can then help their families and friends follow the good habits they have been taught. Run It! looks to making a lasting impression on these children, so that the frequency of medical complications such as diabetes and many cardiovascular diseases goes down.
The Community Pantry, established in 1989, is a non-profit food program for low income families in San Benito County, New Mexico, an area with a large Native American population. This program targets the needs of the children whose families may be struggling to make ends meet. Community Pantry provides meals for children over the weekends while they are home from school by supplying backpacks filled with nutritious food.
Bethel Academy is an after-school tutoring program in Ardmore, Pennsylvania, that serves the needs of children from the ages of 5 to 15. The academy runs on a very small budget and is staffed completely by volunteers who serve as teachers and tutors for the children. The number of children they serve, as well as the volunteer base, has been steadily increasing through the efforts of the surrounding community. When the program began in 2006, 15 children were enrolled, and already it has grown to more than 75 this year. A future goal is to provide field trips and other opportunities that many of these children would otherwise have been unable to have.
North East Westchester Special Recreation, Inc
Since it was established in the early 1970s, North East Westchester Special Recreation has served children and young adults with developmental disabilities in Westchester County. This unique, locally based agency is the second largest of its kind in New York State. This organization aids the members of our community with its variety and quality of programs. The Barat Foundation felt a strong connection to North East because of its commitment to children, which is the focus of our own work. The Barat Foundation is confident that this program will be a valuable learning experience that will enable young adults to become more self-sufficient and independent by learning this important life skill.
St. Anthony’s Free Medical Clinic
St. Anthony’s Free Medical Clinic, which operates in the Melrose section of the Bronx, opened in July 1998 to address the medical needs of the poor and uninsured. The clinic serves both adults and children and is staffed by volunteer doctors, nurses, medical students, and physician’s assistants. The clinic offers immunizations, physical examinations, asthma care, well-child visits, anemia checks, various medications, and medical education to its patients. Medical supplies, including pharmaceuticals, are donated by doctors’ offices and hospitals. However, the clinic relies on financial donations to help operate and purchase items such as bandages, medical tests, syringes, and office supplies.