2011 Lights On Afterschool! Breakfast of Champions!

Our 2011 Breakfast of Champions was held on Friday, October 21, 2011 at the Rhodes on the Pawtuxet in Cranston. Our theme was “The Other Side of Learning,” and our keynote speaker was Wes Moore, a youth advocate and the author of “The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates.” Wes spoke to the unique role that caring adults can play in shaping the futures of individual youth; his story is testament to how positive adult intervention can redirect a youth who has strayed off path. His words were both cautionary and hopeful, and above all else, heartfelt.

In addition to Mr. Moore, we heard from Commissioner Deborah Gist and parent speaker Shari Weinberger. Congressman David Cicilline presented Champion Awards to Senator Frank DeVall and Representative Frank Ferri in recognition of their unflagging support of out-of-school time. We also honored Matt Diamond, an exemplary youth worker with the Cumberland Youth Commission, as well as Newport Community School for their outstanding program.

Youth had a strong presence at the event, with 96 youth in attendance for the entire breakfast and 48 arriving afterwards for a youth-centered workshop with Wes Moore. We enjoyed a lively and invigorating performance by youth from the African Drumming Extended Day Enrichment Program at The MET School, and those of us who observed the workshop session that followed the breakfast were moved by the incisive questions posed by middle- and high-school youth. We also featured a gallery of quilted banners in which each quilt square was decorated by youth from local afterschool and summer learning programs.

A total of 392 afterschool professionals, elected officials, school teachers, school principals, superintendents, AmeriCorps members, parents, and advocates enjoyed a powerful event!

RIASPA would like to thank the following companies and organizations for generously sponsoring our 2011 Lights on Afterschool! Breakfast of Champions:

Bank of America

Citizens Bank


Cox Communications

METLife Home and Auto

Sodexo Rhode Island

2012 Lights On Afterschool! Breakfast of Champions
October 19, 2012
details forthcoming