Continued from STAFF page....
Rebuilding while continuing to serve the community seemed an impossible challenge, but committed social workers do not give up! Eventually, the fire debris was finally cleared. And over the next 4 years, despite difficult and cramped conditions in a cluster of temporary buildings, Noelle and her staff (and the Outreach’s 30+ dedicated volunteers) continued to carry out their mission. They "soldiered on" through the hard times, and finally began to see light at the end of the tunnel as the new year arrived, 2012.
Now, the brand new Gerald Ryan Outreach Center (officially opened in March of 2012) is a comfortable, beautiful, well-lit facility, with an environment that is welcoming, positive and spiritually uplifting.
Noelle’s staff of two program managers may be small, but with the help of volunteers, they are able to accomplish much, and they do so every day of the week--and every week of the year.
Noelle Campbell, once a volunteer herself with the Sisters of St. Dominic of Amityville, views her leadership role this way: “I believe the mission of our program is to change the lives of the people in Wyandanch by responding to the immediate and critical needs of our community. The scripture passage: ‘My people perish for the lack of knowledge’ challenges us to educate, empower and teach those we serve.”
Continued from STAFF page....
Sister Elizabeth Myles was running the Gerald Ryan Outreach Summer Camp when Naycha was a young teenager who loved attending the camp. A few years later she became a counselor, and she admired the way Sister Liz managed so many details. All of this turned out to be excellent training for Naycha’s future position as Director of the camp!
The GROC Summer Camp is now a 6-week camp (thanks to the great success of the Golf Outing fundraiser that the Ryan Center organized and ran) with an average attendance of 150 children, staffed by a combination of local schoolteachers and teen and adult volunteers from Temple Beth-Torah, in Melville.
Activities are varied, but always with an emphasis on health, fun, fitness and learning.
The air conditioning system in the Parish Hall (installed in 2013) provides welcome relief on the most sweltering days of summer—and Naycha makes sure her staff is prepared to provide lots for the children to do indoors, when necessary.
But most of the time, under alert supervision, the children are outside doing all that kids enjoy doing when school is out. The GROC Camp also arranges fun field trips for the kids on occasion too—such as visiting the Bronx Zoo, or going to a ball game.
Naycha Florival has worked hard, and continues to work hard. She's used her intelligence wisely, and been lucky to have had exceptional mentors, such as OLMM’s “legendary” Sister Elizabeth Myles.
And now, it is quite a busy lifestyle that Naycha has carved out for herself at the Ryan Outreach. She is fully focused, and no longer divided in her duties (as she used to be p/t with OLMM as well as p/t at the Outreach....NOW, full-time, year 'round at the GROC!)
But it’s also true that her hard work, organizational and teaching skills and her positive spirit are very much appreciated by her peers, staffs, students and campers—here in the heart of Wyandanch on Straight Path.