Sixth-grader Brianna Blumenberg has been recognized by Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus as the county’s Citizen of the Month for November.
Mr. Neuhaus selected Brianna for her work to organize a fundraiser to help children attend summer camp at the YMCA of Middletown.
“Bri’s Charitable Bracelets” has raised approximately $1,800 since Brianna began crafting Pandora-style bracelets and selling them for $10 each in March.
“Brianna is an extraordinary young woman and cares deeply about the community,” County Executive Neuhaus said. “She has a big heart and what she has accomplished with ‘Bri’s Charitable Bracelets’ is incredible. Brianna should be commended for her efforts and for her commitment to Orange County and its residents. We are all proud of her and know that she has a bright future ahead.”
Brianna was inspired to make bracelets after attending a “Girls Night Out” jewelry party with her mother, Stephanie, who is executive director of the YMCA of Middletown. Brianna started making bracelets and recruited her family to assist in purchasing materials and making them to benefit the YMCA’s “Strong Kids Campaign,” which raises funds that enable less fortunate children, adults, and families to participate in the YMCA’s programs and services.
“The thing that inspired me to start ‘Bri’s Bracelet’s was when I started to realize that kids my age were less fortunate and couldn’t go to camp where my mom works at the YMCA of Middletown,” said Brianna. “Making bracelets and raising money could help send kids to camp. It feels amazing and I know I’ve done previous things to help others and uplift their spirits but I feel like this is the biggest thing that I’ve done and it makes me feel so happy. I feel so honored that I got to meet the County Executive and I never thought that anything like this would happen in my life!”
Brianna raised $1,500 which provided five children scholarships to attend the YMCA’s summer camp. She hopes to start fundraising for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital when she reaches $2,000 in bracelets sold.
At the middle school, Brianna is involved in the Student Government, Ukulele Club, and Minisink Motivates. Outside of school, Brianna is an competitive dancer involved with ballet, pointe, musical theater, jazz and lyrical dance.
Mr. Neuhaus’ Citizen of the Month Award, which acknowledges outstanding Orange County residents, was introduced in January 2017.