PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Family YMCA's inaugural Changing Lives After 55 awards will celebrate and recognize community members over the age of 55 who have made significant contributions and achievements in Berkshire County.
Local financial management firm, Berkshire Money Management, has signed on as the event's title sponsor; iBerkshires.com is one of the media sponsors along with The Berkshire Eagle.
The awards night, slated for Wednesday, Oct. 3, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Berkshire Money Management in the historic Model Farm, the former Crane & Co. Mansion in Dalton, will salute honorees in the areas of Education, Arts and Culture, Business, Nonprofit, Youth Development, Healthy Living, and Social Responsibility.
"Berkshire Money Management needed to be part of observing this group because they are our tribe. The people we work with are local changemakers, especially in business. The description of the potential awardees describes so many of our clients that it's really just an extension of celebrating them," said Allen Harris, CEO and chief investment officer of Berkshire Money Management.
The Changing Lives After 55 selection process will be nomination driven. Nominees older than 55 on or before July 1 will need to have demonstrated a commitment to the Y's core values — caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility — while making significant contributions and achievements in Berkshire County.
"iBerkshires is honored to partner with the Berkshire Family YMCA in recognizing individuals who are making our community a better place, efforts that often go unnoticed," said Osmin Alvarez, publisher of iBerkshires.com.
The awards will celebrate the work that often goes unheralded, and the people who have selflessly made community connections to build upon the Y's efforts toward a healthy spirit, mind and body for all. A panel of judges will review the nominations and select individuals who best represent those ideals in each category.
"Simply put, we couldn't be more excited about hosting this event," Berkshire Family YMCA CEO and Executive Director Randy Kinnas said. "We have numerous stories of individuals over 55 giving back in big ways. We have two challenges ahead — deciding on the honorees and getting those individuals to agree to be in the spotlight. We know the people doing this work are not doing it for the recognition. We are grateful to Berkshire Money Management for signing on as a title sponsor to help us kick off this event right."
The event, which aims to be an annual tradition, is a major fundraiser for Berkshire Family YMCA. Proceeds will support the YMCA financial assistance program: the Y's promise to the community that no one is ever turned away because of an inability to pay. From a child becoming comfortable in the water, overcoming their fears and saving a life to a single mom having peace-of-mind knowing her child is building character and life skills through youth sports and the Y's core values to a senior enhancing connections, decreasing a sense of isolation, and improving overall well-being to a family reconnecting after trauma has forced them apart — the Y has a commitment to the community.
The Berkshire Family YMCA operates two facilities in the Berkshires, one at 292 North St. and the other at 22 Brickyard Court in North Adams.
The Changing Lives After 55 awards night tickets will be available for purchase in September on the website here. The event will include a reception with hors d'oeuvres and light fare. For information about sponsorship opportunities, contact Kinnas at email@example.com.
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