Homestead Florida City
Drug Free Youth in Town
An Unveiling/Celebration Ceremony for the community mural the students of the DFYIT Saturday Club created with acclaimed artist Xavier Cortada was revealed on Sept 13th.
As members of DFYIT they have made a commitment (to themselves and their parents) to remain drug, alcohol, and tobacco free. They wanted to share the positive message of their healthy lifestyle choice with their community (Homestead and Florida City), especially the younger generation.
They developed the concept, creating artwork depicting an image of a healthy, drug-free multicultural community with all ethnicities and ages represented at the center of the mural. They surrounded the "community" of people with images of the positive representations of Homestead- Harris Field, their image of teamwork, drive, energy, commitment and Homestead Hospital, their image of peace, healing, good health. Next, they randomly placed thought provoking words throughout the artwork capturing the message they wish to portray- Peace, Hope, Love, Family, Happiness, Freedom, together with words written in native tongues "hola," "welcome," "sak passé."
They are extremely proud of the message they have created. It's new permanent home- the center of the Food Court in Prime Outlets Mall, Florida City- where it will be highly visible by the community on a daily basis. The parents, students, City Mayors (Homestead and Florida City), Council, and news media were present. The students were presented with Certificates of Appreciation by the City of Homestead recognizing them for their hard word and dedication in creating the mural and for sharing the message of hope with the community that the mural brings, as well as their commitment to remain Drug- Free.
The "Saturday Club" is unique in that it is the only one of its kind that meets on Saturdays within the student's neighborhood directly impacting the community. While many of the members attend local area middle and high schools where they participate in a DFYIT Club, the Saturday Club allows them to all get together, middle and high school students combined, with like-minded peers from their neighborhood that weekday school boundaries may separate. They come together on Saturdays, and occasional weekdays, at the Phichol Williams Community Center where they participate with our Student Services Coordinators in group discussions gaining invaluable knowledge about alcohol, tobacco, and other drug prevention that they share with their friends, families, and members of the community. They participate in Life Skills Training workshops and random drug testing. Currently, there are over 82 students enrolled in the Saturday Club, over 500 students in the Florida City/Homestead communities.
Pictured left to right are members of the Greater Homestead/Florida City Chamber of Commerce who joined in on the festive celebration and support the DFYIT Saturday Club: Steve Losner, Vice Mayor, City of Homestead;Stacey Burger, DFYIT Program Manager; Jeff Porter, Councilman, City of Homestead;Corey Gold, Homestead Hospital and Greater Homestead/Florida City Chamber of Commerce; Artist Xavier Cortada; Judy Waldman, Councilwoman, City of Homestead; Steve Bateman, Councilman, City of Homestead;Nick Sincore, Councilman, City of Homestead; and Bob Farnes, Manager, Prime Outlets Mall-Florida City. Not pictured: Mary Finlan, Executive Director, Chamber of Commerce and Hasan Zahran, Owner The City Grill Restaurant.
This project was made possible by our Proud Sponsors: the Alliance for Human Services, Miami Dade Dept. of Human Services, Miami Dade Criminal Justice Council, The Home Depot-Florida City, Publix Supermarkets, The City Grill, El Toro Taco, and Capri Restaurants, Prime Outlets Mall, Mikasa, Party City, WalMart, and Office Depot- Florida City.
FOR MORE INFORMATION about the DFYIT Program or ways you can get involved, CONTACT: Stacey L. Burger, Program Manager, DFYIT (Drug Free Youth in Town) 16201 SW 95 Avenue, #205, Miami, Florida 33157 (305) 971-0607 (office) (305) 971-4632 (fax) (305) 205-0253 (cell) or email: Stacey@dfyit.org
During Spring 2003, Xavier Cortada worked with DFYIT staff and kids to help them create the "United We Stand" mural (above). For more information visit www.dfyit.org.