Shady Side Academy freshman Sonia Kshirsagar founded the Breckenridge Youth Service Committee (BYSC) in her Wexford neighborhood in 2019 and serves as its chair. The BYSC held its 2nd Annual Multi-Charity Block Party on Aug. 21, 2021, benefiting three local nonprofit organizations: the Free Store Wilkinsburg, the Homeless Children's Education Fund, and Living In Liberty.
A total of 24 young volunteers ran the event, including 16 SSA students. In addition to Sonia, fellow SSA freshmen Navya Arora, Sai Chaudry, Maanya Goulatia, Neyla Hinedi, Ava Jankowski, Audrey Jiang, Annabel O'Brien, Abrianna Privitera, Ella Roth and Jordan Roupe, and SSA Middle School students Roshan Kshirsagar, John Brunins, Shelly Chaudry, Ari Roth, and Simon Roth all volunteered at the event. Wilkinsburg Mayor Marita Garrett was also in attendance.
The event featured a DJ, gift card drawings, fun activities, temporary and henna tattoos, a Kona Ice Truck, and a sweets & treats table. In the two-hour event, a total of $2,926 in monetary donations were received: $1,335 for the Homeless Children's Education Fund, $1,006 for Living in Liberty, and $585 plus a U-Haul cargo truck full of material donations for the Free Store Wilkinsburg.
Way to go, Sonia and BYSC volunteers!