Contribute to Kiss-n-Squeal and help someone like George |

Contribute to Kiss-n-Squeal and help someone like George

For the past 17 years, YouthZone has gone “to the pigs” every July as the agency’s annual Kiss-n-Squeal fundraiser begins. Because I know you will be asked from various people in various ways to support YouthZone in this fundraiser, I would like to share a story with you. This story is one of many over the years that gives you just a glimpse of what you are supporting when you support YouthZone.

“Hi, my name is George. I am 15 years old. Before I met YouthZone I was out on the streets not going to school, stealing, robbing and doing drugs. I became a whole different person. With all my drug use and all the drugs I was trying, I am lucky that I never overdosed even though I was close a couple times. I never listened to my parents and sometimes I wouldn’t go home for days.

I was arrested 11 days after my 15th birthday. I spent about one month in the Department of Youth Corrections (DYC). When I went to court, it looked like I would be left in DYC for two years. In court, YouthZone stood up for me. They said they wanted to help me and they believed that I could change. Since that day, YouthZone has helped me a lot. I am getting my credits for school so I will be caught up and can return to school in the fall. They are teaching me to play guitar, and they take me to the skate park.

Because of YouthZone, I am in a drug and alcohol program, which is very helpful to keep me sober. They are helping pay for a lot of my stuff. They even take me to lunch. YouthZone has helped me so much. I am glad they believed in me and gave me a second chance. If not for YouthZone, I would now be spending my time in DYC.

I would highly recommend YouthZone to parents that are having problems with their kids. I think they should talk to YouthZone before it’s too late for their kid and the court makes them do it. Personally I think that if I had not gotten arrested, I would be doing the same stuff I was doing a couple of months ago like being on the streets, doing and selling drugs, and not caring about anything. I am glad that I am sober now. I can live a whole new and different life.

Thank you, YouthZone, for everything you have done for me. You have made me a new and better person, and my mom is happy every day to see me clean and out of trouble. Thank you for everything.”

Take a minute of your time to remember a George in your life that may have been helped by YouthZone, or maybe a time when you were helped by an organization similar to YouthZone. Then go to and join in supporting YouthZone’s Kiss-n-Squeal fundraiser. It could mean a world of difference to some young life.

See you on the pig trail.

Mary Jean Carnevale is YouthZone fundraising/marketing coordinator.

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