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Author Archives: Naomi Bonman

Miss California Plus America 2014 Inspires Local Girls

Lia Freeman, Miss California Plus 2014

Lia Freeman, Miss California Plus 2014

By Naomi Bonman 

SAN BERNARDINO, CA- In the majority of National Beauty Pageants it’s rare that we see a curvy or plus size woman being represented, and as a result we then see a decline in the self-esteem of young girls who don’t feel pretty because they cannot identify with what is being represented. This why Lia Freeman, San Bernardino resident, decided to get involved and run for Miss California Plus America 2014, in which she was crowned.

“I decided to compete for my community”, Freeman stated. “I see girls with low esteem and I wanted to give them someone to look up to and inspire them.”

Freeman flew to Atlanta on Monday, June 30 to compete in Nationals where she hopes to bring the crown home; however, with or without the National crown, she will still promote her platform of empowering inner city youth between the ages of 10 and 24 through the promotion of physical, mental and emotional well-being within them. Through her organization, ‘Lia’s Got Good Cense’, located in San Bernardino, Freeman educates youth in the areas of health, education, and finances. She has dedicated her life to working with children, as well as volunteering with those with special needs, veterans, and senior citizens. She is also a advocate of literacy, which she was inspired to promote being that her Grandmother has been a librarian in San Bernardino County for over 25 years.

In addition to her philanthropic activities, Miss Freeman is a standout contestant in the competition because she is a mixed breed being Latina and African American. Not only is she bi-racial, but she is one of the first who has decided to wear her hair natural despite some of the judges stating that she should straighten her hair.

“I am honored to represent California and all of what the Miss Plus American pageant systems stand for, celebrating the inner beauty of each contestant and commitment to our community. With a Latin and African American background, I love that California embraces all. I am an Afro wearing, salsa dancing girl with love for country music, a true diverse Californian!” Freeman said.

Miss Freeman is definitely breaking barriers and providing an inspiring outlet to our youth that if they dream it, they can achieve it by going out there and making things happen. She encourages other young adult mentors to assist youth in finding their passions and bettering their community by finding activities that youth are interested in; such as a dance party, bowling night, skate night, etc., led by a young mentor that they feel comfortable with.

For more information on Lia Freeman and to keep up with her endeavors, please visit www.californiaplusamerica.com or www.facebook.com/MissCAPlusAmerica.

 

New Income Limits May Help More SCE Customers Qualify for Utility Bill Discounts

Re-Written by Naomi K. Bonman

ONTARIO, CA- It’s the summer time which means that people are running their air conditioner more frequently than usual. This also means that utility bills will be higher than usual; however, Southern California Edison (SCE) has a variety of tools and programs to assist customers manage their energy use.

The California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE) and the Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA) programs have been altered to allow the maximum-allowable income which allows people to save a few bucks on their electric bill.

The income limits for CARE and FERA programs have increased, meaning more SCE customers may qualify for one of the programs. The CARE program can lower customers’ utility bills by approximately 30 percent, and FERA provides a reduced monthly discount for income-qualified households of three or more based on energy usage.

To learn about more ways to save energy and lower your bill this summer, visit www.SCE.com/CoolSavings.   Customers can also get summer savings and efficiency tips via SCE’s Twitter feed and Facebook page.

YAP Hosts AmeriCorps Member Graduation for Class of 2013-2014

KODAK Digital Still Camera

YAP AmeriCorp Graduates, staff and Elected Official Dignitaries Photo by Naomi K. Bonman

Written by Naomi K.  Bonman

Joesph Williams being presented with a from Bank of America

Joesph Williams being presented with a from Bank of America

SAN BERNARDINO, CA- On Thursday, June 26, the Youth Action Project (YAP) held its 2013-2014 AmeriCorps Members Graduation ceremony. The ceremony was held at the San Bernardino Adult School. The brief ceremony featured a light meal as guests gathered in before the ceremony followed by a welcome from YAP Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Joesph Williams. YAP AmeriCorps Alumni Shonda Hutton was the keynote speaker for the evening where she spoke on “Self-Love and Knowing Who You Are”. She explained the four steps to success which were:

  1. Defining your purpose
  2. Knowing Your role. You don’t know everything. Make sure to value teamwork because ‘Teamwork makes the Dream work”.
  3. Involve yourself around those who are succeeding and doing what you desire to do. Take notes and have them take you under their wings as their mentee.
  4. Cultivate your relationships. Serve with those that you become involved with. Thank them often.

Proceeding Hutton, Alfred Arguello of Bank America presented YAP with a check for their dedication and commitment to everything that do in the community.  Kimberly Scott, YAP Program Assistant; and Tremanine Mitchell, Director of Operations, then recognized each graduated and presented them with their certificates and acknowledgments from elected officials throughout San Bernardino County and State District.

2014 community supporters included  Assemblymember Cheryl Brown, 47th District; San Bernardino Mayor, Carey R. Davis; Senator Mike Morrell, 23rd District; Fontana City Mayor, Acquanetta Warren; San Bernardino City Unified School District; San Bernardino  Employment Training Agency; California Volunteers, AmeriCorps; and Corporation for National and Community Service.

The three partner sites were Arroyo Valley High School, San Gorgonio High School, and San Bernardino Adult Education.

[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sXgQEsdmfFQ&feature=youtube_gdata]