Posted on: May 11, 2021

AB Youth Council’s ‘Blessings in a Backpack’ wins state honor

BlessingsInABackpackPhoto2The City of Atlantic Beach Youth Council has been selected as one of five Florida League of Cities’ Youth Council Community Service Award winners.

The Youth Council (ABYC) partnered with Blessings in a Backpack, a national nonprofit organization, to fight food insecurity among local elementary school children whose primary source of food is their school.

ABYC members planned out its project, deciding what contents to include in each backpack. Then, one-by-one, they filled each backpack, labeled and packaged them together for a local elementary school. Each backpack included healthy options such as fruit, tuna, macaroni and cheese, cereal, and peanut butter, as well as a few fun options such as Fruit Roll-Ups and Pop-Tarts. The Youth Council also included handmade cards of encouragement inside each backpack. Overall, the council exceeded their original expectations by more than 100% after gathering double the amount of supplies necessary for the project.

ABYC members said the partnership with Blessings in a Backpack opened their eyes to the challenges that some members of the community face, and that they now want to do more to help.

“I felt great knowing that what I was doing made a direct impact on my hometown and its members,” Youth Council member Avery Little said in the council’s application for the award. “This project made me realize that you never know someone’s struggles but showed how much of an impact we can make as a group when we put our minds to it.”

The FLC winners receive a trophy, are featured in the League’s award-winning magazine, Quality Cities, and have their projects featured on the League’s website and social media accounts.

“It is my hope that these fine young people will take what they have learned from the ABYC and continue to give back in other ways throughout their lives,” Mayor Ellen Glasser said in her letter nominating the ABYC for the FLC award. “Their servant leadership and good citizenship is truly commendable. I also want to thank our youth advisors Dawn Pope and Kari Ferguson for providing just the right amount of oversight and support to make our ABYC so successful. “

The Florida League of Cities (FLC), the united voice for Florida’s municipal governments, honors municipal youth councils that successfully address specific needs in their local communities. Composed of high school students within the city, municipal youth councils are special councils that typically serve as an advisory board to the local government. They are sometimes referred to as youth corps, teen advisory boards or mayor’s youth councils.

“Youth council members are the future leaders of our communities, and if what we saw from these students and their community service projects is any indication, our cities have a strong future ahead of them,” said FLC President Tony Ortiz, an Orlando City Commission member. 

This year’s other FLC Youth Council Community Service Award winners and their projects are:

  • City of Alachua Youth Advisory Council – “Used Softball/Baseball Equipment Drive for Foster Care Kids.”
  • City of Clermont Youth Council – “Homeless Care Pack Project.”
  • Village of Pinecrest Youth Advisory Council – “Mental Health Awareness Day.”
  • City of Pinellas Park TeenWorkX Youth Council – “Holiday Giveback Project.”

The award is the second recent statewide honor for the Atlantic Beach Youth Council. In October, an entry by Youth Council member Ava Rathet was selected as a winner of the 2020 Florida League of Cities Youth Council Photography Competition. The annual competition asks Florida’s municipal youth councils to showcase what they love about their city, town or village with a photo of their favorite aspects of it.

The ABYC plans and supports at least special event each year under the guidance of two adult advisors. Each year, ABYC members elect officers and recruit new high school-aged members. They operate with a small budget and report to the City on their efforts. 

 Far exceeding its charter, ABYC members voted to support and recently executed or participated in the following projects: 

  • Halloween Pumpkin Display, with a Wizard of Oz theme, to benefit Palliative Care
  • Mother’s Day card decorating at a local Green Market
  • Beach cleanups
  • “Twenty for Twenty” planting of 20 trees for the Class of 2020
  • Rededication of the AB Skate Park to honor legendary Beaches citizen Sandy Forsyth
  • Participation in the Florida League of Cities’ Photo Contest (winner)
  • Government 101 presentation at City Hall
  • Sponsoring two families to provide Christmas gifts
  • Service hours at other City events


Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Home

Luminaria returns to Beaches on Dec. 23

Posted on: November 29, 2023

Artisans' Faire on tap for November 30

Posted on: November 27, 2023

Track your water use

Posted on: July 7, 2023

Yard Waste Collection Guidelines

Posted on: August 13, 2023

Flood protection in-a-nutshell

Posted on: April 29, 2023

Protect Our Beaches Campaign

Posted on: December 13, 2022

Adopt-a-Tree, why don't ya

Posted on: September 19, 2022

City adopts mission, values statements

Posted on: August 24, 2022

Make sure your signs meet code

Posted on: August 24, 2022

Please join the AB Cares team, if you can

Posted on: September 8, 2022

Mosquitoes buggin’ ya? We feel ya.

Posted on: August 3, 2022

About traffic signals …

Posted on: February 14, 2021

New city manager Killingsworth on the job

Posted on: September 26, 2023

Cleaning up after the storm.

Posted on: August 30, 2023

Nuisance Flooding: August 2023

Posted on: August 28, 2023

Grant funding update

Posted on: July 10, 2023

Donner Park splash pad update

Posted on: June 7, 2023

Wild Wonders 2023 schedule

Posted on: May 15, 2023

Kids to Parks Day set for May 20

Posted on: May 8, 2023

City Manager Recruitment Update

Posted on: May 15, 2023

Charter Review Committee established

Posted on: January 26, 2023

Egg hunt on tap for April 8

Posted on: January 19, 2023

Mayor's Message (February 2023)

Posted on: February 20, 2023

Mayor's Message (January 2023)

Posted on: January 20, 2023

Charter Review

Posted on: January 10, 2023

November 8 Municipal Election Update

Posted on: November 22, 2022

Tropical Storm Nicole Update

Posted on: November 7, 2022

King tides in AB during fall 2022

Posted on: September 7, 2022

Crime prevention tips

Posted on: August 26, 2022

Donner Road construction underway

Posted on: July 15, 2022

Senior Tai Chi classes

Posted on: July 28, 2022

Sculptures of Atlantic Beach

Posted on: June 30, 2022

Beaches Community Resources Guide

Posted on: June 2, 2022

Lower Speed Limit = Safer Community

Posted on: April 7, 2022

Earth Day Art Show April 22

Posted on: April 1, 2022

Welcome, British Royal Navy sailors

Posted on: March 24, 2022

Volunteer Opportunities

Posted on: March 15, 2022

City of AB honors 'Dutton Island 5'

Posted on: February 15, 2022

Town Hall meeting this Saturday

Posted on: January 20, 2022

Complete Streets Project: Main Street

Posted on: December 10, 2021

Complete Streets: A Primer

Posted on: December 10, 2021

COAB Tree Giveaway Program

Posted on: December 6, 2021

16th Street beach walkover project update

Posted on: November 13, 2021

King tides in AB during fall 2021

Posted on: September 9, 2021

King tides in AB during fall 2021

Posted on: September 9, 2021

City of Atlantic Beach COVID-19 Update

Posted on: August 17, 2021

AB Jazz Fest postponed

Posted on: July 29, 2021

Saluting AB’s Small Businesses

Posted on: July 23, 2021

Trees in AB: Call before you cut

Posted on: July 19, 2021

Bridgeport barge update

Posted on: July 15, 2021

About palm tree pruning

Posted on: May 27, 2021

Stay in the Know, AB

Posted on: March 6, 2021

City of AB Connectivity Plan

Posted on: May 5, 2021

Public Parking Workshop May 6

Posted on: April 29, 2021

City of AB helping 'LEED' the way.

Posted on: April 28, 2021

City Commission Priorities

Posted on: April 27, 2021

USS Stark ceremony to be held May 17

Posted on: April 23, 2021

City Hall Closed Presidents’ Day

Posted on: February 12, 2021

COVID-19 Update

Posted on: January 28, 2021

MLK Celebration to be held online

Posted on: January 14, 2021

Latest COVID-19 testing information

Posted on: January 14, 2021

Please don't feed geese and other wildlife

Posted on: December 24, 2020

Put AB Under Your Tree

Posted on: December 2, 2020

Duval County election results

Posted on: November 4, 2020

Howell Park enhancements under way

Posted on: September 30, 2020

Get the SaferWatch app

Posted on: September 22, 2020

18th Street Enhancement Project update

Posted on: August 17, 2020

Isaias Update

Posted on: August 1, 2020

Are you storm-ready?

Posted on: July 30, 2020

Stay safe at the beach

Posted on: July 9, 2020

Promoting Racial Equity

Posted on: June 19, 2020

Juneteenth Freedom Day

Posted on: June 19, 2020

Sign regulations update

Posted on: May 7, 2020

Coronavirus information

Posted on: March 4, 2020

JEA trimming trees in Atlantic Beach

Posted on: January 21, 2020