David Pinkowitz
Newsletter Editor

Welcome to the October issue of the Tri CYA Newsletter. We are working hard to keep you informed of the MANY activities and programs that are available to you.

Below you can read Debbie's Tri CYA Message, the Street Renamed Watkins, Spotlight on Linda Leake, Nissequogue River Canoeing and Learning to Read.

For more information, or to send us your comments, contact Director Debbie Rimler
at 631-673-0614 or info@tricya.org

To check out previous Tri CYA Newsletters,
click August 2023 Newsletter
click June 2023 Newsletter
click April Newsletter

  Click here to check out our Facebook Page

Table of Contents
-- Director's Message
-- Street Renamed Walkins
-- Employee Spotlight
-- Nissequogue River Canoeing
-- Learning to Read

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     Director's Message

By Debbie Rimler

Welcome to Carly Uveno our new youth worker.

Sadly, it's goodbye to Andy Melendez who has been with Tri CYA for 4 years as a Youth and Family Advocate for the CAST program. We wish him all the best of luck in his new position.

The summer was wonderful and very busy. Our back-to-school backpack program distributed 425 backpacks full of school supplies. Our youth attended center-based programs 6 days a week and also went on 34 free field trips.

Fall has gotten off to a great start with Tri CYA programs such as homework help, cooking, art, drop-in, reading and mentorship groups. Some new additions are tutoring Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, hair braiding, and a college information workshop. In addition, an evening cooking class titled Cooking 101 will teach older students the basics.

Its not too early to collect new unwrapped toys for Project TOY in December.

The food pantry always needs nonperishable food.

Some Special Upcoming Events are:
  • Salsa Dancing - Monday Oct 2 at 6-8 PM with dinner for Hispanic Heritage Month
  • Hispanic Heritage Program - Wednesday Oct 4 at 7-9 PM Town Hall (I am getting an award for community service)
  • Health Fair - Friday Oct 6 at 4 PM Village Greene (423 Park Ave)
  • Pop Up Concert - Friday Oct 13 at 7:00 PM Hecksher Park Huntington
  • Trunk or Treat - Friday Oct 27 at 4-6 PM Tri CYA parking lot
  • Project TOY - December 18 - Dec 21

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Town Renames Street for Rev Watkins,
Community Leader
by Pam Robinson (Huntington Now)

A large crowd of residents, family and friends turned out Friday to honor the Rev. Bernadette Watkins and witness the renaming of East Fourth Street for her.

Numerous elected officials, led by Town Councilman Dr. Dave Bennardo, joined in the ceremony for the woman who, as a community leader and spiritual leader of Mt. Calvary Church, has for decades led literacy programs, collected African American artifacts, and taken in children in need of homes and love.

Bennardo said, “Whether she’s teaching babies to read at the Tri CYA, carrying boxes herself of the largest African American traveling museum of artifacts around, let’s be honest, they broke the mold.”

Click here to read more > >

Click here to see the PHOTO ALBUM

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   Employee Spotlight
Linda Leake

Linda Leake has worked at Tri Community and Youth Agency (Tri CYA) since 2006. She was first hired to be a youth and family advocate for Project CAST. CAST stands for Community and Schools Together -- which is a gang prevention program. In this role, Linda provided services to youth and families through home visits, school visits, and linking families to vital resources.

Linda then became the Special Needs Worker for Tri CYA. In this role, Linda works with youth on a daily basis in programs such as homework help, girls' group, drop in and emergency food pantry. In this role as special needs worker Linda also coordinates and initiates large scale programs such as the agencies Black History Month, Girls Dinner, Career Day, and Linda also initiated the first Historically Black College Fair on Long Island in 2018. Linda also works with individual families helping them to be connected to all available resources both at Tri CYA and in the community.

Prior to her employment at Tri CYA, Linda worked at Huntington High School with the 9-12 graders for 8 ½ years, and also enjoyed a 14 year career at Grumman.

Linda received her Bachelor's degree from S.U.N.Y. Empire College. Her desire to give back to the community led her to pursue a career in Social Work. Linda received her Master's degree in social work from S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook, setting the example to the youth and families she works with that positive powerful change can come at any age.

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    Nissequogue River Canoeing
by Martine MacDonald

This summer 8 youth from Tri Community and Youth Agency (Tri CYA) canoed down the Nissequogue River. The trip was lead by veteran Tri CYA workers Martine MacDonald and Shaahquan Rogers. The canoe journey is about 5.5 miles. Canoeing down the river takes effort and patience. For most of the participants it was their first time in a canoe. There were some beautiful things to see -- including the Nissequogue River, many birds, and other canoes and kayaks.

Tri CYA does the Nissequogue Canoe Trip every summer. A fun time is had by all. We look forward to this trip again next summer. This trip -- as are all Tri CYA summer trips -- was provided free of charge.

Click here to see the PHOTO ALBUM >>

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    Learning to Read
by Cheryl Lynn Blum

It's a wonderful day when a child picks up a book and realizes they recognize some of the words. They look at the pictures and can decipher a few more. Knowing the sounds that the letters make - phonics - is the next piece of the puzzle, as the child "taps" their fingers to isolate each letter.

Our youngest Tri CYA participants, who 2 weeks ago said, "I can't read" are at the beginning of this process. What a joyful feeling when it all comes together!

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