Junior Achievement Intergenerational Pilot Project Set to Launch

PALM HARBOR, FLORIDA—February, 2003 Tradewinds

Greg Giordano, Chief Legislative Assistant to State Senator Mike Fasano and Mike Osadchey, CEO of Lasting Legacy, announce the launching of Junior Achievement of West Central Florida’s intergenerational mentoring program in Pasco County.

Formed at the suggestion of Dave Williams, CEO of Bayonet Point Regional Medical Center, and with the support of Terry White, Secretary of the Florida Department of Elder Affairs, the mentoring program was created to link senior citizens with high school students to share the Junior Achievement program which provides the basic of business and economics with elementary age children. If successful in Pasco County the pilot project may serve as a statewide model for future programs.

Start-up funding for the pilot project has been donated by Mike Osadchey of Lasting Legacy and Sally Gronda of the Area Agency on Aging. Volunteers of the program have been recruited by Giordano and Osadchey through a series of public appearances supported by Bill Ayerigg of CARES, Pat Babinetz of CARES Hudson/ Bayonet Point Senior Center, Lee Fenton of CARES Claude Pepper Center, Sandra Howard of CARES Elfers Senior Center and Pat Malarkey-Stallard of Pasco County’s Elder Nutrition Program.

“I applaud Junior Achievement and all of the dedicated volunteers who have made this pilot project possible,” State Senator Mike Fasano states. “Linking talented, service-minded seniors with students will ensure that the knowledge gained over many lifetimes will be passed on to future generations.”

“Partnering three generations together for helping kids to value free enterprise is revolutionary,” states Richard George, President of Junior Achievement of West Central Florida. “It addresses the critical issue of inspiring our youngest students by utilizing our teenager role models partnered with our most experienced citizens, a powerful collaboration.”

“The Junior Achievement elder mentoring program allows us to exemplify the vitality of Florida elders,” Osadchey states. “I am hoping that Florida can be the national leader in demonstrating the value of connecting elders with children through educational initiatives.”

“We are very excited about the opportunity to partner with Junior Achievement to develop a pilot intergenerational mentoring program in Pasco County,” states Sally Gronda, Executive Director of the Area Agency on Aging. “This program will assist in bridging the gap between seniors and youth in our community.”

“As a business consultant with Junior Achievement for the past fifteen years I have been most impressed with JA’s commitment to providing quality education to our public school children,” Giordano states. “Mike Osadchey deserves great credit for his willingness to head up the effort to create a new and innovative program here in Pasco County. It is exciting that Pasco has the opportunity to be at the forefront of developing this creative pilot project.”

To participate in the pilot project or for additional information about Junior Achievement and its programs please contact Carol John, Education Director at (727) 530-0884 x 30 or 1-800-481-7599 x30.