Black Arts and Culture

Teens With A Purpose Gala To Commemorate 20 Years

Teens With a Purpose (TWP) will host its 9th annual fundraiser Gala and Move Maker Awards Thursday, on November 10, 2016 at the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts in Virginia Beach, beginning at 6 p.m. This year’s event also will mark the 20th year for the youth development organization. The theme is “Sankofa.” The keynote speaker for the TWP 2016 Gala is Kevin Judd, Esq., President of the National Bar Association. The NBA is the oldest and largest national voluntary legal association with a network of over 66,000 predominantly Black lawyers, judges, educators and law students.

Teens With a Purpose (TWP) began as a youth-led HIV/AIDS ministry in 1996, giving young people the opportunity to spread the education and prevention message to their peers. In 2007, it became a community-based organization still committed to HIV/AIDS education and prevention with an expanded mission to use peer-led programs, events and the arts as a gateway to critical conversations and actions that help improve the health and well-being of young people, transform lives and impact communities.  Mary Bowman, an award winning advocate for people living with AIDS who uses her gift of poetry and song to spread messages of hope, awareness and education, will be another esteemed guest speaker for the event. 

Presenting the Move Maker Awards and Scholarship are: Mamie Johnson, Norfolk City Council Member,  Dr. Amelia Ross-Hammond, Councilwoman-City of Virginia  Beach; Michael Burlucchi, President Hampton Roads Pride; Rodney Jordan, Norfolk Public School Board Chairman; Emily Spruill Labows, Director, Office of Cultural Affairs Virginia Beach; Ms. Andrea Bradley, Assistant Vice President of Underwriting GEICO and several other Hampton Roads Leaders from various sector.

Guests will enjoy gourmet food during the cocktail style dinner reception.  This year’s gala includes a post event concert that features musical, dance and poetic performances by some of Hampton Roads finest youth and adult artist. A special commemorative magazine will be presented to each guest. The magazine’s cover features original art created by Clayton Singleton to commemorate TWP’s 20th Anniversary.  The Magazine highlights TWP’s 20 year Sankofa Journey including youth stories, accomplishments, photos, service advertisements, local businesses, organizations, and individuals that support Teens With a Purpose and much more.

Committed to moving forward and leaving no one behind, TWP’s Move Maker award and scholarship program, presented during the gala, will recognize the unfolding potential, perseverance and tenacity of young people.  The 2016 Move Maker Award is for youth (13 -18) from Hampton Roads who have made significant strides over the past year while overcoming surmountable obstacles. Many of the young people nominated for this award have never been celebrated before; this may be their first time dressing up and attending a lavish event where they are the true VIPs. The top Move Makers will also receive the Adam Haylock Scholarship.  The monetary award will help advance their aspirations.

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