Town of Arlington
Department of Health and Human Services
Christine Bongiorno, Director
27 Maple St.
Arlington, MA 02476
For Immediate Release
Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017
Media Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Arlington Youth Counseling Center to Honor Dr. Michael Thompson at 7th Annual Gala
ARLINGTON — The Arlington Department of Health and Human Services is pleased to announce that the Arlington Youth Counseling Center (AYCC) and Board of Youth Services (BYS) will honor Dr. Michael Thompson at the 7th Annual Out on the Town Gala.
Dr. Thompson, an Arlington resident and renowned child psychologist and best-selling author, will be honored for his work with Arlington and its residents. The event will be held on Friday, Nov. 3 from 7-11 p.m. at Arlington Town Hall.
“Michael has been so generous with the community,” said Carlene Newell, longtime BYS member and Arlington Public Schools health educator. “His appearance at our parent forums is always a highlight, drawing standing-room-only crowds whenever he speaks.”
From illuminating insights on the emotional lives of boys and the impact of summer camp on adolescent development to giving advice on managing the pressures of high school and navigating parent-teacher relationships, Dr. Thompson has been a trusted source of guidance for parents and school administrators worldwide.
“We are delighted to be recognizing Michael Thompson and his contribution to the field,” said Justine Bloch, Gala Chair and Co-chair of the BYS. “And, as one of Arlington’s own, it is especially wonderful to honor him at this event.”
“Much of AYCC’s work supporting children and youth is also about supporting the adults in their lives. Dr. Thompson’s research and insights are such an important part of that,” added Colleen Leger, Director of AYCC. “It is one of many reasons why we selected him as this year’s honoree.”
Each year, the Out on the Town Gala brings hundreds of community members together to support the work of AYCC, promote the value of community mental health, and celebrate the year’s accomplishments. In addition to remarks from Dr. Thompson, the gala will feature raffles, a silent auction, live music by members of the Arlington High School Jazz band, hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar.
“Every year the gala is an incredible event, where the entire Arlington community comes together in support of AYCC, which is such an important resource for local families,” said Christine Bongiorno, Director of Health and Human Services in Arlington. “Funds raised through the gala ensure that every child who needs our help receives it, regardless of the family’s financial circumstances.”
Through donations and support from the community, AYCC has transformed from an entirely town-supported agency to a thriving mental health center supported by town funding, health insurance reimbursement, grants and private donations.
Over the past year alone, AYCC provided more than 5,500 counseling and psychiatric sessions to more than 350 youth and families, regardless of their ability to pay. This is due to the funds that are raised through the gala, grants and other events.
Lead sponsors for this year’s gala include:
- Gold Sponsors: East Cambridge Savings Bank and The Sanborn Foundation
- Silver Sponsors: Watertown Savings Bank, Bowes Real Estate and Whole Foods Market
- Bronze Sponsors: Cambridge Savings Bank, McLean Hospital, Mount Auburn Hospital, Ottoson Parent Advisory Council (OPAC), Lalicata Landscape Products and Jacqui’s Design Group.
Gala tickets can be purchased here for $75, and sponsorship opportunities are also available. For more information, visit AYCC’s website or contact AYCC’s Executive Director Colleen Leger at 781-316-3255.
About the Arlington Youth Counseling Center:
The Arlington Youth Counseling Center is a division of the Department of Health & Human Services, and for more than 45 years, has provided counseling services to local children and youth from ages 3-21. As one of the only remaining mental health facilities dedicated to the treatment of community youth and families, and one of the only providers in the area that accepts youth with public insurance, AYCC serves as a beacon of hope for hundreds of Arlington families.