This spring The Island School is thrilled to celebrate 10 years of partnership with Boys Hope Girls Hope of New York (BHGHNY). This partnership, established in Spring 2013 Semester at The Island School, had a lasting impact on 20 Semester Scholars over the last ten years.
Over the last 10 years, 20 Boys Hope Girls Hope Scholars have spent a Semester at The Island School. These students took a leap of faith, joining us on our remote campus, which is quite the opposite of life in New York City. Many swam in the ocean for the first time, and all went on to become SCUBA certified. While BHGHNY works to break down barriers for students living in New York, The Island School is committed to developing leaders who inspire and drive change. It has been a natural fit to bring our programs together as we support the next generation of change makers and offer opportunities for transformational growth, building confidence, self-awareness and leadership in young people.
Recent F22 alumnus, Godson Blaise reflects, “Without the support and help of BHGH, I would have never had the opportunity to go to The Island School. Both programs have worked together in order to help me become a better version of myself.”
The partnership was initially dreamed up by Island School former Executive Director of The Boys Club of New York Brad Zervos and Founder Chris Maxey. After being introduced through a mutual connection, he reluctantly agreed to meet with Chris in New York. Their scheduled 20-minute meeting ended 90 minutes later with Brad committing to bring a group of 15 Boys Club students to Eleuthera for three weeks. Brad went on to become the Executive Director of BHGHNY and from there, a partnership between the two organizations was set in motion.
We celebrated our 10-year milestone with BHGHNY at the end of 2022. The celebration took place in Brooklyn at the Boys Hope Girls Hope’s LaSalle Hall, a location that is meaningful to BHGHNY students. Alumni, families, supporters, and community leaders all came together to look back on the impact both programs have had over the years. Alumni who were present took place in a special pinning ceremony to commemorate the celebration and both organizations exchanged plaques to honor the partnership.
“It was really special to celebrate our BHGHNY alumni,” shared Director of Semester and Summer Term Admission Anna Becker. “It is always fun to bring such a range of community members together; There were students who had just returned from Eleuthera days before the event, alumni approaching their 10-year anniversary, and program leaders and supporters who have worked together to support these student journeys over the years from both organizations. Our celebration was a great reminder that this partnership serves as an important catalyst for growth for these ever-evolving young minds and of our resilient and dynamic student communities.”
Please join us in celebrating the last 10 years of partnership between The Island School and Boys Hope Girls Hope of New York. We look forward to the next 10 and beyond!