Excerpts from the 2019 Circles of Support Celebration

There were so many wonderful speeches at the Celebration! Here are a few excerpts. Myauta Ponzo, SCSD student and Girls' Circles participant, speaking about Girls' Circles: "It opened up so many doors. . . I'm just happy that I got to be a part of something so monumental. . . .These ladies gave me a chance, they gave us a chance to be ourselves and empowered us and gave me a sense of what self-love was." Hemavattie Ramtahal, Roots & Wings Award recipient, muse, and workshop leader: "Our Girls' Circles. . . they do incredible things. All of these muses are women ...

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Community: Laura LaFontaine

We are fortunate to have Laura LaFontaine join us as Executive Director. Laura has served as a muse since 2014, she has been a member of our planning committee and she has led and facilitated workshops for Girls Day Out & Parents Day Out. She is certified to teach, has been trained in mindfulness practices, and also serves on the staff of NYSCEA, the New York State Council of Educational Associations. Laura will be spearheading our muse recruiting and training as well as joining Ebony Belmar in running this year's Girls Day Out. You can reach Laura at lalafonta...

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Community: Kulak’s Makes Our Celebration Beautiful

You already know that Kulak's Nursery and Landscaping offers gorgeous plants, expert landscaping, and unique gifts. But did you know that Kulak's partners with WGGS to help make our Celebration Dinners special? Flowers from Kulak's grace the tables, and each of our girls is able to offer her specially-chosen mentor one of these lovely flowering plants to take home. As we plan special events, we're so grateful to Kulak's for helping to bring a little more beauty into our girls' lives. Next time you shop at Kulak's, please let them know how much you appreciate their ...

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Clinician Spotlight: Colleen Guy

Colleen Guy (at left, with girls from one of last year's circles) is an LCSW and certified school social worker who received her BSW from Syracuse University and her MSW from Columbia. Colleen has worked at Central Park for ten years. She's been with WGGS from the beginning, when Ebony Belmar invited her to an organizational meeting. "Immediately after meeting these women, I was inspired by their care and compassion for our youth, but also their drive and determination to create a meaningful, impactful program," says Colleen. "It’s been inspiring to watch the organi...

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Clinician Spotlight: Ebony Belmar

We are so grateful for the tireless energy of Ebony Belmar, who serves as the Program Coordinator of Girls' Day Out. A current WGGS board member, Ebony is a social worker at Mont Pleasant Middle School and has been with WGGS since 2005. She is deeply committed to supporting the families of Schenectady. Along with organizing Girls' Day Out, she has also spearheaded the creation of Boys' Day Out & Parents' Day Out. She serves as a liaison between WGGS & the Schenectady City School District. Ebony doesn't just support kids in school: she likes to bring students ...

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Community Recognition

"The Schenectady Foundation sees the Working Group on Girls of Schenectady, Inc. (WGGS) as a critical investment for girls in our community who often come from extremely challenging backgrounds. It gives them hope, self-confidence and support to see that . . .

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