My name is Bryan Antwi and when I was nine years old, I joined the Oval Community Youth Program. I am now fourteen years old and I remember not being dedicated to anything when I first started participating in the Oval Community Youth Program, I noticed how much I wasn't helping myself in playing video games all day and watching television all night. I was not as physically fit as I am now. When I started off playing for this program, I played for the Football team and then a few months later, when I started playing Baseball, I learned that I love the sport much more than anything else. Coach Chino taught me everything that I need to know about Baseball. He taught me about hard work, commitment and dedication to my team. Getting to practice on time every practice was important because it shows my dedication. I eventually became the captain of the 14/15 under division. The title of a captain comes with great responsibility, President, Zoila Pena was able to guide me to be more responsible, by reminding me to remind the players about practice and games. We have gone to a lot of tournaments over the years, outside of New York even. Coach Chino just knows the sport inside and out, which makes me push to gain that same knowledge and experience. President, Zoila Pena made sure that each of us are going to school and getting good grades. She would make sure our homework was done, before practice even begins. If one of us were struggling, she would have another teammate who isn't struggling help or tutor us. This organization has become an important aspect of my life. I am the Short Stop, but with the hard work and dedication that I have learned during my years in this program, I can transition between pitcher, second base, third base catcher and outfield. My team mates are my good friends and have become almost like brothers to me. I love this program and will love to continue to grow with the Oval Community Youth Program for years to come. Practice makes perfect and hard work pays off like coach Chino always says.
Review from Guidestar
My name is Cassandra Encarnacion and I am a Summer Intern for the Oval Community Youth Program. This summer while I interned at OCYP, I was able to not only gain the experience of being a day to day secretary for a Youth Program, I also learned that with time and dedication, almost anything you put your mind to can be done, especially with a good supporting staff. The President of the program, Zoila Pena and I, spent hours at coordinating events, games, traveling arrangements, planning for tournaments, writing requests for donations, and participating in community events. All of the skills that I gained during my experience have helped me now become a successful Full-time Secretary at a Neuropsychology Office in New York City. This experience with OCYP opened my eyes to a new way of giving back to the community through volunteer tutoring for program participants on weekends. Working with the youth from the South Bronx, was somewhat of a challenge each day, but eventually it became a small family for me. I hope and will be honored to continue supporting the Oval Community Youth Program each summer with my volunteer work I have performed. This is an amazing program and I enjoy working with them.
My name is Nikauri Delacruz and I am the Captain for the Oval Community Youth Program Lady Bandits Softball Team. I love my team and my coach. I feel like we are a big family. OCYP has helped me become a responsible young adult by imparting on me the importance of education, committed hard work, and discipline. I value my teammates, and with the guidance of Coach Chino, I have learned to become a true leader for my team. Not only was I able to learn the fundamentals of the sport that I love, I was also lead into the right path when it comes to my education. Throughout my years at OCYP, Coach Chino and President, Zoila Pena have emphasized the importance of keeping an good education, which lead me to setting future goals and sticking to them. OCYP Bandits is the best thing that has happened to me in my teenage years living in the South Bronx. They’re program is just great.