YC celebrates 70th birthday at Anaheim White House

Ceasar Martinez, Hans Lumme, Lina Lumme and Gina Elefante receive proclamation from the State Assembly.

The Youth Center has been in the business of serving children and helping families for 70 years. They opened their doors for the first time in 1952 serving 50 students. Today, over 3,500 students benefit from their services every year. 

On September 17, over 150 guests gathered at The White House in Anaheim to celebrate this nonprofit’s accomplishments and highlight the best of the best volunteers. A proclamation was presented to The Youth Center by Congresswoman Michelle Steel and Assemblywoman Janet Nguyen.

Somebody who is very important to our Youth Center family passed away this month and a special moment during the event was dedicated to Ron Bates. He has been supporting children for years, helping The Youth Center during the most challenging times with the literacy program, Adopt a Family and the New Center for Youth. Ron’s wife, Marilyn Bates attended the event with her close friends.

The Youth Center fulfils their mission through many volunteers and supporters. That is the only reason they are so successful in what they do for the kids. One volunteer in particular, Karen Frankenberg, was recognized for her leadership on the board, her mentorship efforts, her contribution of over 5,000 service hours, and she raised over $50,000 for the kids. Because of this, The Youth Center, the AmeriCorps and the office of the President of the United States presented a Lifetime Achievement Award to Karen Frankenberg.

City officials, School Board members, Lions Club, Rotary Club, The Youth Center supporters and Board Members were in attendance. The international themed affair included performances from around the world provided by Premier Dance Arts of Los Alamitos and Die Gemutlichen Schuhplattler. Live music in the Rose Garden was provided by Rod Browarny, while ivories were tickled by Hank Barto on piano. Before everyone hit the dance floor, guests were invited to partake in the International Dessert Extravaganza at the White House. Dessert was donated by Borsh Deli and supporters who made international specialty treats.

The Youth Center reached their goal of raising $30,000 as they forge ahead with new programs and a new facility. The Youth Center has had one mission for the last 70 years and they could not have done it without their many supporters.  They are building the new facility that will enable them to serve the needs of more children with innovative and relevant programs. “Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to SA Recycling, Pacific Premier Bank, and Brewery X for being our sponsors”, shared Maryam Guirao, Development Director. “A special thank you to our parent speaker Janice Herrera for sharing her family’s life-changing experience with our guests”, continued Maryam.

The Youth Center serves children from 26 cities. In the past 70 years, 232,829 students achieved new skills from music, tutoring, Leadership Academy, and other enrichment programs. Scholarships and assistance are provided to families in need for the holidays. Children that come to our center feel safe, they get help when they struggle academically, or have a listening ear and mental health resources, when they feel lonely or discouraged. If you have any questions or want to learn more about The Youth Center, visit www.TheYouthCenter.org