Children’s services and new facility come to low vision non-profit

The Bucks County Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired is expanding to include more services for children experiencing vision problems.

“This is something we’ve invested time and money and resources into,” said executive director Anne Marie Hyer. “Kids are an essential part of our community.”

Many students could benefit from Low Vision Evaluations and being matched with the right technology to encourage their success at school. Services will include support groups, recreational activities, a resource guide of services available in the community and a new Children’s Services Coordinator and Committee, which is looking for local volunteers.

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Evan Kownurko is new Eagle Scout

Evan Charles Kownurko of Newtown’s Boy Scout Troop 99 recently earned the rank of Eagle Scout. Thompson Memorial Presbyterian Church was the beneficiary of the Washington Crossing resident’s Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project.

Evan led a group of volunteers in the restoration of the maintenance garage located at the church’s graveyard. He chose the project as a way to give back to his church family and because his own late father is buried there.

Prior to the project, the garage was in a state of disrepair and was covered in moss. He and his team cleaned up the grounds around the garage, replaced rotted wood with cinder blocks to match the rest of the exterior.

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Sixteen students participate in Foundations Summer Youth Corps

Sixteen college students from Bucks County have been chosen to participate in Foundations Community Partnership‘s 2016 Summer Youth Corps, which offers paid student internships at local non-profit human service agencies in Bucks County serving children, youth and families.

The program provides students the ability to gain practical experience while helping to effect positive change in the community by working at non-profit human service agencies. This is the ninth consecutive year that Foundations has offered the internship program, expanding from 11 students in its inaugural year to 16 students this year.

Non-profit agencies have the benefit of additional helping hands and the students gain meaningful work experience with groups that are making a difference in Bucks County, as well as earning college credit through a partnership with Bucks County Community College.

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Bucks students have fun learning ‘Science in the Summer’

by June Portnoy

Science really can be fun! And that’s the message that Bucks County students left with after completing a four-day session of GSK (GlaxoSmithKline) Science in the Summer™, a free, fun hands-on science enrichment program for elementary school children.

GSK Science in the Summer™, launched 30 years ago in the Greater Philadelphia area, returned this summer to 16 locations in the Bucks County Library System beginning in June. GSK provides the funding to make this program possible, and the Franklin Institute is responsible for preparing the lessons.

Each year the program focuses on a different science-related topic, this year’s topic being chemistry.

While teaching the program at the Free Library of Northampton Township last month, Michael Gleicher, a biology and chemistry teacher at Central Bucks High School South, explained, “This program is about exploration. There are no quizzes or homework or assessments, so these kids don’t need to be able to accomplish a specific goal at the end of the session.

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Dear Council Rock school community:

We are just one month away from beginning another outstanding school year in the Council Rock School District. We will open the 2016-17 school year with over 11,000 students across our 10 elementary schools, three middle schools, two high schools, and The Sloan School.

On behalf of our administration, faculty, and staff, our students should know how excited we are to see them on the first day of school. The 2015-16 school year was another excellent one in Council Rock. Our students flourished in our classrooms, performance halls, and athletic fields.

Any number of state and national rankings substantiate the performance of the children who populate our 72 square miles. Their academic accomplishments are also reflected in the fact that over 92% of our 2016 graduating seniors are college bound, while being awarded a collective $22 million in scholarship money.

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Bucks County Singers begins fall membership drive

Having just completed its 31st year of singing, the Newtown-based Bucks County Singers hopes to continue expanding its membership as it begins a new and busy year.

Under the direction of Terry Boyle Greenland, Yardley voice teacher and University of the Arts professor, Bucks County Singers (BCS) currently boasts a membership of about 35 energetic men and women who embrace the chorus’ unique style, which blends singing with fun-to-watch “riser choreography,” making for concerts that are unlike those of most other choirs.

The group is accompanied by local pianist Tom Baust.

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A sweet sixteen helps The Humane Society

Here is some food for thought: imagine if everyone would use just one birthday to raise awareness and hold a benefit for their favorite charity whatever it may be.  Imagine how many nonprofit organizations could benefit!

And what better way to celebrate a “Sweet Sixteen” party and the beginning of young adulthood than taking the opportunity to make a difference in the world around us? Council Rock student Grace Porter recently turned 16 and did just that.

Like many girls her age she was looking forward to planning her Sweet Sixteen Party. But Grace wanted her party to be different, and for her party she made a very mature and selfless decision to have a backyard fundraiser for a cause near and dear to her heart – helping animals.

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Foundations awards scholarships to Emma Lambert and Sarah Devlin

The Foundations Community Partnership in Education program recognizes the achievements of local Bucks County public high school seniors for their demonstrated community service, commitment to academic performance, and quality of character.

Students are nominated to receive the award by their guidance counselor or a member of the school’s administration. In addition, Foundations has increased the number of schools to which they award scholarships through their annual Partnership in Education program.

Students from Bucks County Technical High School, Middle Bucks Institute of Technology and Upper Bucks County Technical School received grants this year, along with students from the 16 other public high schools Bucks County.

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Daredevils go undefeated!

The Council Rock United Soccer Association U10 Daredevils Girls team went undefeated in the Shoot for the Cause Select Soccer Tournament to win the championship in their division on Sunday, May 15th, at the Montgomery United Soccer Club in North Wales, PA. This is the last time the girls will play together as most are moving on to travel teams.

Pictured in the back row from left are Caitlin Pera, Madison Conte, Mia Blake, Lana Leiter, Coach Dave Schlosser, Nicole Muradov, Ava Perri and Taylor Gearhart; front row from the left, Riley Schlosser, Kaleigh O’Leary, Sammi Herpel and Paige Kuechler; seated in front is Cailey Doyle.

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Bucks County Senior Games promote camaraderie, physical activity and fun

by June Portnoy

Approximately 250 Bucks County seniors competed in the 34th Annual Bucks County Senior Games held Monday, June 6th through Saturday, June 11th. Age categories consisted of 50 to 59, 60 to 69, 70 to 79, 80 to 89, and 90 plus. This year’s oldest participant was a 95-year-old Doylestown resident who competed in bocce, pinochle and billiards.

This weeklong event, hosted in partnership with the Bucks County Area Agency on Aging (BCAAA) and the Bucks County Department of Parks & Recreation, gave seniors the opportunity to demonstrate their athletic and intellectual abilities.

According to William R. McTigue Jr., Administrative Officer for Public Affairs at Bucks County Area Agency on Aging and an organizer of the Senior Games, this year’s most physically challenging game was the track & field, which included 100-meter sprints.

Seniors looking for less rigorous activities could register for bridge, pinochle, darts and a trivia contest. Other activities included bowling, tennis, table tennis, bocce, billiards and golf.

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