February 06, 2012 05:00 PM
By Lisa Stone, Co-Founder, BlogHer
Last Friday, Citi hosted its first Citi Pond Kids program at Citi Pond at Bryant Park. Citi Pond Kids, a new addition to the Citi sponsorship community platform, is a program designed to help young people in the community reach their fullest potential in life by providing them with motivational and educational experiences.
Friday's program benefited 50 children from the YMCA of Greater New York who were joined by Torino 2006 Olympic Games silver medalist figure skater Sasha Cohen. Cohen, an ambassador and Board Member for Figure Skating in Harlem, spoke to the children from the Y After School Academy (the Y's after-school program located at P.S. 57 in Harlem) about mentoring and education then gave a short performance on the ice. Figure Skating in Harlem is a not-for-profit organization that provides girls with educational and skating opportunities that build self-worth and promote physical well-being and academic achievement.
"This is a wonderful opportunity to provide these children with a unique and fun experience," said Cohen. "I want to commend Citi for their commitment to local communities and thank them for including me in this important initiative."
Bill Brown, Manhattan Division Director, Citibank added, "Sasha's hard work, determination and commitment to giving back to others are great attributes that we at Citi share and strive for on a daily basis. We are proud to offer programs such as Citi Pond Kids to help positively impact the lives of young children in New York."
The YMCA of Greater New York, inaugural participants in the Citi Pond Kids program, is the city's largest youth services organization and is dedicated to building healthy, confident, connected and secure children, adults, families and communities. "The YMCA of Greater New York is honored to be a part of this exciting event with Citi Pond Kids and Olympic silver medalist Sasha Cohen," said Gary Laermer, Chief Development Officer of the YMCA of Greater New York. "At the Y, we believe that all kids are champions. Whether it's on the ice, on the court or in the classroom, the Y believes that every kid should have the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive in this great City."