JAMESTOWN – Youth who are making a positive difference in the community were recognized yesterday through the Electric Youth event held at the Jamestown YWCA.
The event was put on by Chautauqua County Bright Spots and Hope Chautauqua. The groups honored several young people, mostly from southern Chautauqua County, who are committed to serving the community.
The event’s facilitator and community member Kate Ebersole says that with the COVID pandemic, and other obstacles in the past year, it is even more important to recognize these individuals.
“Many times we only hear about what’s wrong with our community. We really, really need to hear about what’s right with our community and who’s doing good, right things and that’s why this is so important,” said Ebersole.
Manalis Spinoza was one of the bright spots honored at the event. She was nominated for the award because of her involvement as a tutor for the Chautauqua Striders.
“I felt like it was an honor, a big opportunity, cause I’ve been doing a lot and I didn’t really feel that support, and today I felt that support from all the community and all the politicians,” Spinoza said.
Elimelec Perez was there on behalf of the Striders and he says that it was Spinoza’s desire to help others that makes her stand out.
“She’s always constantly trying to support her peers in different tasks when it comes to tutoring even when it’s just being a friend, somebody to listen to, and she’s there for them.”
Spinoza hopes to go to college after high school and one day become a politician.
“I liked being involved in the community, being around it and I would just like to make a difference,” said Perez.
To nominate someone for future Bright Spot events, Ebersole says that you can do that through the organization Prevention Works or by contacting the Bright Spots Committee.