The ACYO-WD Central Council successfully hosted our first-ever Service Event in conjunction with our Annual fellowship under the auspices of His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian. The Service Event and the Annual Fellowship took place at the Headquarters of the Western Diocese and was held on Saturday, December 18, 2021. The Service Day Event and the Annual Fellowship was organized by the ACYO-WD Central Council, chaired by Victoria Amran along with her executive board members Andrew Hagopian, Nerces Der-Aprahamian, Ossanna Amran, Tamar Chavderian, Alen Ashikian and Kevin Kestekyan. Our events began with a Vesper service in the main Cathedral and quickly transitioned to the prepping of our donation bags. Members of local and regional ACYO chapters gathered at the diocese to put together non-perishable goods and supplies for our local impoverished families. Stations were set up to put together 30 bags of the donated items, while our youth simultaneously delivered another 30 bags to the local families. Through the efforts of over 40 youth, 60 families were given resources to help them during this Christmas season. After completing our packaging and deliveries, we sat down together to eat as His Eminence Archbishop Hovnan Derderian and The Dean of St. Nerses Seminary, Fr. Mardios Chevian provided us with a message to focus our hearts on Christ, the baby in the manger who changed our lives. As we are preparing to accept Christ into our hearts during this Christmas season, we provided the youth in our diocese the opportunity to help others and give back to those in need.
«Sell your possessions and give to those in need. Make for yourselves wallets that don’t wear out — a treasure in heaven that never runs out. No thief comes near there, and no moth destroys.»
Following this event, our Annual Fellowship was held which included dinner, ping pong competitions, singing of cultural and religious songs, a white elephant game and more. The ACYO Central Council would like to thank the St. Leon Burbank ACYO chapter for their support during the event. We extend a special thank you to our youth who delivered the 30 bags directly to our local family’s houses: Artin Vartani, Rizkalla Amran, Alen Ashikian, and Aleks Ashikian.
«Generous persons will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.»
On behalf of the ACYO-WD Central Council, we are beyond appreciative and thankful to our volunteers and sponsors for their generous donations who made the weekend a success. With their contributions, our local families can enjoy the holiday season with joy and gifts.
A special thank you to the following individuals for their contributions, efforts, and support.
Officer Karissa Peltier of the Burbank Police Department
Burbank SWAT team
Emily Lopez: Community Outreach & Special Programs Manager for Burbank Housing Corporation (BHC)
Christine A. Ramos: Assistant Executive Director for Family Service Agency of Burbank
Mary Cutone: CEO of YMCA Burbank
Jennifer Cervantes: YMCA Burbank Director of Programs
Dale Morimizu Gorman: Kids’ Community Clinic Executive Director
Razmik Arutyunyan: Raffi’s Market Place
Audrey S. Phillips: Human Resources Expert and Denisse Torrella: Assets Protection Business Partner from Burbank Target
Special Thank you to our Sponsors:
Burbank YMCA who initiated a drive for food and toys, provided 20 $25 gift cards and two gifts for our teenage boys and girls
Kids’ Community Dental Clinic who provided kids dentist supplies
Warner Brothers who provided kid’s toys
Cartoon Network who provided kid’s toys
Raffi’s Market Place who provided two containers of rice
Burbank Target who provided wrapping supplies for our toy drive
USC Oncology CISO Team who provided nonperishable goods
Anonymous donor who provided T-shirts
Anonymous donor who provided Diapers
Anonymous donor who provided $50 donation
Anonymous donors who provided goods and toys at our St. Leon drop off site
The ACYO-WD Central Council will be posting the pictures and more information about our upcoming events on our website and social media forums. Take a moment to also explore our ACYO-WD app on the app store.
Facebook: ACYO Western Diocese
App store: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/acyo-wd/id153329853