On March 5, a banquet was held to present the 2013 Youth of the Year Award to one deserving youth from The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Atlanta. Each of the three Clubs in Metro Atlanta were represented with one finalist and one runner-up. At the banquet, all three finalists gave personal testimony speeches about overcoming obstacles in their lives, what being a member of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs means to them, and their future aspirations.
In the end, 16-year-old Jalen Coleman was selected as the winner and will now go on to compete against other Boys & Girls Club members for the Georgia Youth of the Year title and a $1,000 college scholarship from Tupperware Brands Corporation. As the new Youth of the Year for The Salvation Army Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Atlanta, Jalen is a true example of an extraordinary young man. He is recognized for his sound character, leadership skills and willingness to give back to the community.
“Jalen is an enthusiastic and responsible young leader among his peers at the Bellwood Boys & Girls Club. His dedication to academics, participation in extracurricular activities, and passion for the community around him make Jalen an excellent choice as The Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club 2013 Youth of the Year winner!” said Leisa Smith, Executive Director of The Salvation Army Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Atlanta.
If Jalen wins at the state competition, he will compete for the title of the Southeast Region Youth of the Year and an additional $10,000 scholarship from Tupperware Brands, the recognition program’s national sponsor. Five regional winners will advance to Washington, D.C., in September 2013, to compete for the title of The Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) National Youth of the Year. The National Youth of the Year will receive an additional scholarship of up to $50,000 from The Rick and Susan Goings Foundation and will have the opportunity to meet with the President of the United States in the White House.