February 18, 2016
Members of the Young Ladies for Positive Action (YLPA) organization at Dean Middle School pose in front of bottled water donations at the Annual Leadership Conference on Feb. 13 at the Berry Center. The YLPA, YMPA and HOLA groups from throughout the district donated bottled water to residents of Flint, Mich.
Feb. 18, 2016—Approximately 550 CFISD student members of the Young Men for Positive Action (YMPA), Young Ladies for Positive Action (YLPA) and Hispanic Organization for Leaders of America (HOLA) used their Annual Leadership Conference on Feb. 13 as an opportunity to give back to Americans in need.
Amid a day of engaging educational sessions at the Berry Center, the session “#FlintMatters” was a collaborative community service project in which members of all three groups donated water bottles for residents in Flint, Mich. The city’s water supply has faced a lead contamination crisis that began in April 2014.
YMPA, YLPA and HOLA members in CFISD donated more than 6,000 pounds of bottled water—enough to fill a 17-foot U-Haul truck
The donated water filled a 17-foot truck and was delivered to the Houston Food Bank, which will transport the water to Flint. According to Houston Food Bank Volunteer Production Lead Kimberli Wright, the total donations amounted to 6,065 pounds of water.
“The water is seriously needed in Flint and I know they will be thrilled when they receive it,” Wright said in an email thanking Kesha Bolton, speech pathologist at Dean Middle School.
Members of the YMPA, YLPA and HOLA organizations fill the staircase of the Berry Center at their Annual Leadership Conference on Feb. 13.
The conference concluded with “Legendary,” a networking organization dedicated to cultivating individuals’ natural gifts and producing positive contributors to society. The organization provided an inspirational closing speech, followed by a concert.
Kayla O’Gilvie, a Langham Creek senior YLPA member, said she and her peers were uplifted by the entire experience.
“I feel that the purpose of the conference was to put all differences and rivalries aside and build each other up as young people in an environment that is constantly changing,” O’Gilvie said. “This conference has been empowering every year that I have attended and I am very thankful to be in the presence of people who want to see this generation accomplish great things.”