Community Caring Council’s Annual Breakfast & Elections

Over 50 community members joined Community Caring Council staff members on April 23 at our Annual Breakfast, held this year in the meeting room at SEMO Alliance for Disability Independence.

The Mary Kasten Award was presented to Kathy Sweeney, KFVS12 News Anchor for her commitment to community issues and the Council’s involvement in those issues. During the past year, Kathy has featured the Youth Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition, Missouri Reentry Program and employment barriers of returning offenders, homelessness and United Way’s Education Solutions Team. Kathy has been an active member of the Youth Substance Abuse Coalition; and she and her daughter are the spokeswomen for calling attention to youth in our community to lead healthy lifestyles and avoid substance use.

The Horizon Award was presented to Cheryl Ellis, Southeast Missourian editor and staff writer for her commitment to the work of the Council in several areas. The Southeast Missourian Jr. newspaper now includes a THRIVE Asset-Building feature each month. SE Parent magazine has had feature articles on Bullying and Childhood Depression, which were requested by our Mental Health Coalition. Cheryl has been an active member of our Youth Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition and the Mental Health Coalition. Thanks to Cheryl for getting us involved in Cape Parks and Recreation Day in July 2009 and for helping us to plan and host a Town Hall Meeting in March that brought attention to the use of alcohol and other drugs among youth in our community.

Two Community Partnership Awards were presented to KFVS12 and to the Southeast Missourian for their willingness to publish the community work accomplished by the Council and Council partners throughout the year. Accepting those awards were Kathy Sweeney for KFVS12 and Brian Miller for the Southeast Missourian.

Syd Egan, formerly of Child Care Resource and Referral, is the outgoing Council President. Eva Hillis, Love INC, is the incoming Council President and Gina Matysik, Chaffee Nursing Center, is the incoming Vice President. Many thanks for their willingness to lead our monthly partnership meetings. The next meeting will be Friday, May 21 at 7:30am here at the Kasten Community Development Center, 937 Broadway, Suite 102, Cape Girardeau. All are welcome to attend.

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