Students recognized at UNICO scholarship dinner

Gabrielle Case is the recipient of the Inaugural Kovatch/Perna Family Trades Scholarship presented by Dunmore’s Keystone Chapter UNICO during its 11th annual scholarship dinner at La Buona Vita. 

Front row, seated from left:  Jeffrey Case, recipient’s father; Jordan Case, her brother; honoree Gabrielle Case of the Career Technology Center of Lackawanna County and her mother Justine Case. 

Back row, same order: Keystone UNICO Scholarship Director Sandy Collins, Principal Dr. Karla Carlucci of the Career Technology Center; scholarship provider Gene-O Perna; Yolanda Martinelli, Cosmetology Instructor at CTC., and scholarship provider Tony Kovatch.

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Rocco Mack is the recipient of the Keystone UNICO Family Scholarship.  Shown in the front row, from left:  Jim and Mary Mack Sr., grandparents; Honoree Rocco Mack of Holy Cross High School;. and Joellen Mack, mother. Back row, from left: Sandy Collins, Keystone UNICO Scholarship Director; James Mack Jr., father; and Anthony Mack, brother.

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Scholarship awardees who attended the annual Keystone UNICO Awards Dinner are, front row, from left: Dunmore High School’s Olivia Amico receiving the Frank and Mary Ann Coviello Military Family Appreciation Scholarship; Dunmore High School’s Micah Madrazo receiving the Keystone Chapter Service Award, and Gabrielle Case receiving the inaugural Career Technology Center Kovatch/Perna Family Trade Award. 

Back row, same order: Keystone Chapter Scholarship Director Sandy Collins; Dunmore High School’s Joseph Cardillo, receiving the Brian Piccolo Athletic Award; Holy Cross High School’s Ryan Legg receiving the Keystone Chapter Service Award; and Keystone Chapter UNICO President Mary Ann Coviello. 

Missing from photo are Rocco Mack of Holy Cross receiving the Keystone UNICO Family Award; Sophia Calzola of Carbondale Area H.S., receiving the Keystone Brian Piccolo Award; and Marilyn Vitali, Brian Piccolo Awards Chairman.  

Camp Healing Hearts now underway

Hospice of the Sacred Heart will host Camp Healing Hearts, a five-day camp Aug. 1-5 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. to provide grief education to children ages 8 to 14 who have experienced the death of a loved one. 

Children work with trained bereavement counselors and members of the regional arts community to help them progress towards acceptance of the loss and use the arts as a means of self-expression. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2022 Camp Healing Hearts will be conducted safely via Zoom Video Conferencing. Jennifer Seechock, Hospice of the Sacred Heart Director of Counseling Services, will be available throughout the week for media interviews. 

The five-day camp is free and is made up of two back-to-back 60-minute instructional sessions each day to provide a sense of routine, consistency and ultimately closure for the entire process. Each session utilizes a different theme explored through the arts. Bereavement counselors will be available throughout the week if any campers or family members require individual support. 

Community volunteers lend their time to campers with artistic projects in painting, writing, photography, yoga, dance, singing and cooking/baking. Friday’s session will be held in person at Montage Mountain Waterpark. Social distancing will be observed. 

A video retrospective of Camp Healing Hearts will be presented before the feature film at the Circle Drive-In, 1911 Scranton Carbondale Highway, Dickson City, on a date to be determined. 

Jennifer Seechock is Director of Counseling Services for Hospice of the Sacred Heart.

Hospice of the Sacred Heart is a not-for-profit, free standing hospice program serving Northeastern Pennsylvania since 2004. The main office is located in Moosic, with an Inpatient Unit located in Dunmore. 

Care was provided for over 1,000 patients in 2021 and over 18,000 to date. Hospice of the Sacred Heart employs approximately 120 employees throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania. Volunteers provided over 2,000 hours of support to patients and families in 2021. Most volunteer activities were suspended in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, visit www.HospiceSacredHeart.org

YMCA hosts Quest and Summer Scholars Programs

Students from low-income families often start school unprepared. Despite progressing at the same rates during the school year, gaps widen each summer and students fall further behind their peers. The gap culminates in low high school graduation and college attainment rates, limited job prospects and negative economic impact. This gap is referred to as the Achievement Gap, or Summer Slide.

Providing children with learning opportunities over the summer months is crucial to their educational success. Through the Greater Scranton YMCA’s summer learning loss prevention programs, QUEST and Summer Scholars, the Y makes a profound impact in combating the achievement gap. These programs allow the Y to provide children with the tools and resources they need to succeed at the start of their next school year.

“For years, the Greater Scranton YMCA has worked to combat the achievement gap and provide all children in our community with the tools and resources needed to continue developing academically during the summer,” said Trish Fisher, President & CEO, Greater Scranton YMCA. “Here at the Y, we understand the pivotal role summer learning programs play in the academic development of students and we are so proud to continue providing our community with these invaluable resources.”

QUEST is a learning program integrated into our summer day camp. The program serves all campers in kindergarten through eighth grades and is offered at no additional cost. QUEST is held four days per week. Week one includes pre-testing, weeks two through eight are program weeks and week nine includes post-testing. During each of the four days per week the program is held, children filter through different subjects and engage in hands-on activities.

Summer Scholars is a free research-based and research-proven five-week summer learning program with a goal to get elementary students on track to read at or above grade level by the start of their next school year. In some cases, participants will have the opportunity to exceed grade level expectations. This summer, the program is serving rising first and second grade students attending the Mid Valley and Dunmore School Districts. Breakfast and lunch are provided. Since the program began in 2016, more than 180 students have been served.

Summer Scholars includes 2.5 hours of literacy in the morning, followed by lunch and enrichment in the afternoon. Students also take trips to the Greater Scranton YMCA for use of the pools. The program is instructed by certified teachers, as well as Y staff.

QUEST and Summer Scholars are Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program (EITC) approved EIO Programs. The programs are supported by the United Way of Lackawanna & Wayne Counties, Fidelity Deposit & Discount Bank, UGI Utilities, Peoples Security Bank & Trust Charitable Fund, Pride Mobility, the PPL Foundation and proceeds from the Annual Harry P. McGrath Memorial Golf Tournament & Dinner Celebration.

To learn more about summer learning loss prevention at the Greater Scranton YMCA, contact Trish at tfisher@greaterscrantonymca.org or (570) 828-3130.