April is Autism Awareness Month and Queens Mom Danielle Williams' son, Allen, is helping spread the word through a very special YouTube video for Sesame Street. The video, "Sesame Street and Autism: Saying Hello," shows the different ways children who have Autism can say hello. He represented the Queens chapter and his Nursery group well. Congrats on this amazing opportunity, Allen -- and Danielle!
We're so proud of you! Click below or watch the short video here: https://youtu.be/AoLtttqsNz8
Proving that God will order your steps even through your darkest times, Queens, NY Chapter Jack and Jill Mom Kristin Vaughan Robinson shared her ongoing journey to triumph after tragedy in the aftermath of suddenly losing her husband and their young children’s father last year. A former journalist, the freelance editor and writer penned a chapter in “Delayed But Not Denied 2: Real Stories About Hope, Faith and Triumph,” an Amazon best-selling anthology by 20 African-American women whose testimonies will engage you with their raw honesty and inspire you to persevere with their strength and resilience.
Find out more at www.delayedbutnotdenied.info.
2017 DISTINGUISHED MOM
Each year all chapters of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. select a mother for the Sanderal S. Brown Distinguished Mother of the Year Award. The recipient is voted on by the members of the chapter and awarded to the Mother who has gone above and beyond the call of duty in her participation and support of the goals, mission and vision of the chapter, supports the growth of the chapter, keeps the morale high and unifies the chapter. Our chapter voted Greer Hansen-Velazquez as our 2016-2017 Distinguished Mother.
Greer currently holds the position of Program Director. She is an educator, is married to Manny and has one son, Richie. Her mother, Juliet Hansen is a Past President of the Queens chapter, and her sister is an active member of our neighboring Nassau County chapter. As a Jill of the Queens chapter, Greer had the opportunity to enjoy unique programming until her graduation from high school. When asked what Jack and Jill meant to her as a child, she responded "It was a major part of our upbringing. I have very fond memories of the activities and fun; we had no idea how much work was done by our moms to make everything happen. My sister and I still have friends to this day from growing up in Jack and Jill. I hope our moms in our chapter know what an amazing experience now and ever more they are providing for our kids."
She is thrilled that Ritchie is now exposed to similar experiences. She commented that she has witnessed Richie's love of JJ grow, every month he asks "when am I seeing my Jack & Jill friends this month" this brings such a smile to my face.
She remains active outside of the chapter, as well. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Sorority, Inc, but she admittedly is not as active as she would like. The United Teachers Federation is blessed with her membership on its Executive Board, where she also serves as a convention delegate. In the Queens office, she is the maternity liaison, conducting monthly workshops for pregnant members. In addition, she handled arbitration cases for the UFT, and for her school, she has been a chapter leader for 16 years.
In her spare time, she loves to spend time with her family. Her favorite pastime is baking. Every summer, she vacations in Martha's Vineyard with her entire family.
Some favorite quotes that guide her life and management style : "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken," "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent" , "I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.", and "If someone tells you who they are, believe them."
We are grateful for her leadership! Congratulations, Greer!