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BGCOP Youth of the Year Excels in Coastal Area Council Youth Competition

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Amber Holmes will now compete at state level

OXNARD, Calif.— Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme Youth of the Year Amber Holmes recently took top honors in the regional Boys & Girls Club of America competition. The seven-year BGCOP member, was named the 2015 Coastal Area Youth of the Year and received a $1,500 scholarship from the Coastal Area Council to help her with her college expenses. Holmes, 18, was among six Club members from Kern, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties vying for the title at the sixth-annual regional competition held March 25 at the Radisson, Santa Maria .

She will travel to Redwood City, Calif., the week of April 29 for the California Youth of the Year Competition. Holmes will be one of eight members competing for the state title and a $10,000 college scholarship.

“We are so proud of Amber and the young woman she has become. She works really hard and has become a great leader and mentor to other youth at the Club,” said Erin Antrim, chief executive officer, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme. “Amber represents our Club with great pride and enthusiasm.”

BGCA’s Youth of the Year program uses five weighted categories criteria for the judging process on the local, state, regional and national level. Each candidate is required to write three essays on (1) their club experience; (2) their vision for America’s youth; and (3) their personal brand. Candidates prepare for a personal interview with a panel of judges and prepare to deliver a speech based on their three application essays including contributions to the member’s family, school, community and Boys & Girls Club, as well as overcoming personal challenges and obstacles. Each candidate provides three letters of recommendation from individuals who can personally attest to the candidates’ achievement and potential in terms of (1) leadership, character and service; (2) academic excellence; and (3) healthy lifestyles. Letters and supporting documentation should be informative, highlight the candidates’ accomplishments and corroborate the candidates’ qualifications.

Holmes is a senior at Oxnard High School and plans to study nursing at San Francisco State University next year. She will be the first in her family to attend a university right after high school. She has been the Club’s Keystone president for two years and a teen reporter for the Boys & Girls Club of America’s MyclubMyLife.com site.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Oxnard and Port Hueneme exists to inspire and enable all young people to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. The Club has served the youth of Oxnard and Port Hueneme for 60 years. With three full-service clubs, 18 school program sites and one housing site, the organization is one of the largest of its kind in California, serving more than 9,200 members annually. It’s also the first Boys & Girls Club of its kind to open in the Juvenile Justice Center. Program areas offered to youth include character and leadership development, education and career development, health and life skills, the arts, technology and sports/fitness/recreation opportunities. For more information, visit www.positiveplace4kids.org.

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