2008 Scholarship Winners
The “I’ve Got a Friend” project began at Bernard Fineson under director Janet Wheeler in the fall of 1989. The concept was to develop a strong one on one relationship between an individual with developmental disabilities and a local high school junior or senior. The individuals with disabilities practice socialization skills, develop new ones and establish a “friendship” with the high school student. The students use and share existing skills, gaining experience in the human service field, making a “friend” while developing an awareness of the disabled. Each student who completes 100 hours of service is eligible to receive a $600.00 scholarship at the end of the school year. This year the Independent Bikers funded 11 students (7 at Howard Park, 1 at Hillside, 2 at group home # 6, and 1 at group home #13).
The Corona Lions funded 3 students at Hillside. The students come from various local schools. Applications are accepted in September. We are always blessed with many more students than we can accommodate.
This year’s Biker funded students including Jillian, Alyssa, Nicole, Stephanie, Shiree, Kendall, and Devon in Howard Park. Carmine and Modhu worked in group home #6, Donique worked in group home #13 and Naomi worked in Hillside #11.
For further information on this program, please contact Christine Buschhorn, Coordinator of Volunteer Services at 718 217-5534
Below is a quote from one of the students who participated in the “I’ve Got a Friend” project.
“Volunteering at the Bernard Fineson Developmental Center provided me with a fun and challenging learning experience. The residents and volunteers were friendly and a pleasure to spend time with. During the Christmas season, I was overwhelmed by the kindness exhibited by the bikers of the IBTFT during the Toys for Tots Drive. It showed me that it is important to take the time to show love and concern for those who are in need. I am grateful to the bikers for their generosity and the example they have set .”