Category Archives: youth

Chris Phipps, Austin Kaczorowski and Vanessa Mungia named Students of the Month

The Burney Lions Club honored three students on Thursday evening March 15. Chris Phipps was named 12th grade Student of the Month for February. Austin Kaczorowski was named 12th grade Student of the Month for March, and Vanessa Mungia was named 8th grade Student of the Month for March.

Lion George Whitfield, Austin Kaczorowski, Chris Phipps, Vanessa Mungia, and Principal Ray Guerrero

After being introduced by Burney High School Principal Ray Guerrero, each student was presented with a check by Lion George Whitfield. Phipps and Kaczorowski each received $100 and Mungia received $50.

Chris Phipps has a 4.0 grade point average. He is active in Interact, Leadership Club, Mentoring, basketball, baseball, California Scholarship Federation (CSF), and Leos. He enjoys playing sports, playing video games, and spending time with family and friends. This year Chris made All-League in basketball.

Chris would like to travel abroad.  After graduation he plans to attend community college and play basketball.   He is good at working with children and writing.

Chris’s parents, Aaron and Lyna Phipps attended the presentation. Expressing pride in his sons accomplishments, Mr. Phipps said, “How far he has come!”

Austin Kaczorowski has a grade point of 3.5. He is involved in 4-H, football, wrestling, and track. In his spare time he likes to read. He would like to go skydiving. In the future, he plans to pursue a career in law enforcement.

Austin’s parents Darrin and Michele Kaczorowski and  his sister Erica attended. His dad said that they are very proud of Austin.

Vanessa Mungia has a 3.29 grade point average. She is a member of California Junior Scholarship Federation. She participates in basketball, softball, and volleyball. She is good at math. She likes going on long hikes and swimming, She also enjoys drawing and watching shows on Netflix. In the future she would like to go to Humbolt Stare University and live in Arcata.

Vanessa’s mother, Merri Wolfin, attended and said, “I know she is going to have a good future.”

Her grandparents Jerrilyn and Randy Quinn, her aunt Tyelo Wilson, her brother Cisco Chacon and sister Ta-sti Chacon, as well as her cousin Madison Villarruel all also came to watch her receive her award.


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Devin Murray wins Lions Shasta Central Zone Student Speaker Contest

Devin Murray won the Lions Club Student Speaker Contest for the Shasta Central Zone on Saturday afternoon at the Burney Lions Club.

Chairman Walt Libal, Devin Murray, and Darcy Coulter

Two students competed in the zone level contest. Devin, a Senior at Burney High School, was the winner of the Burney Lions Club level contest. Darcy Coulter, a Junior at Fall River High School, was the winner of the Fall River Lions Club level contest.

Walt Libal, Chairman of the Shasta Central Zone, chaired the contest. The topic was “Integrity and Civility Play What Role in Today’s Society?” Each student gave a speech that was to be no less that five minutes and no more than ten minutes.

Both students delivered excellent expositions on the topic. Darcy gave a testimony to a mentor who had deeply influenced her life and then led the audience through an insightful investigation of how honesty, vulnerability, and humility inform integrity.

“Actions speak louder than words,” she stated, citing a study that showed the importance of non-verbal communication. She also pointed out that if you are civil to others it is more likely that they will be kind and helpful to you in return.

Devin artfully delivered a polished speech explaining why integrity and civility are the foundation for a stable community and society. He used the example of a man who had demonstrated moral leadership. He drew an analogy between moral integrity in community building and structural integrity in engineering. His arguments were backed up by quotations from various authoritative sources.

While the judges were tallying the scores, the two speakers introduced themselves. Darcy’s mom attended to support her. Devin’s parents, sister, grandmother, and Burney High speech coach Melissa Madden all came to watch Devin.

After the winner was announced, Chairman Libal presented each of the students with a certificate. Devin received a scholarship check for $150.

Contest Judges Paul Skinner, Dr. Pam Woodin, Travis Lakey, and Connie Cleckler also received a certificate of gratitude and a box of chocolates.

Devin will go on to compete in the Region level contest. The contest will be held before April 9. The exact date and location have not yet been determined.

This is the 81st annual Student Speakers Contest sponsored by the Lions Fourth District Student Speakers Foundation. There are six levels of competition: club, zone, region, district, area, and the final Multiple Four District Contest.

Altogether, the foundation will award more than $103,000 in scholarships to students. Awards increase with each level. Fifteen District winners will each receive a $4,500.00 scholarship. Four Area winners will each receive an additional $6,500.00 scholarship, and the winner of the final Multiple District Four Contest will receive an additional $10,000.00 scholarship.

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Angel Estrada honored as Burney 8th Grade Student of the Month

Angel Estrada was honored as 8th Grade Student of the Month at the Burney Lions Club on Thursday evening October 19.

BHS Principal Ray Guerrero, Angel Estrada, and Lion George Whitfield

Ms. Estrada was introduced by Burney High School Principal Ray Guerrero. Lion George Whitfield presented her with a check for $50 from the Burney Lions Club in recognition for her achievement.

Angel has a grade point average of 3.2. She is active in activities at her church. She enjoys making doll clothes, drawing and coloring, and having fun with her family and friends. She would like at some time in the future to be a model. Her goals for the future are to move to Paris, France with her parents and to attend college.

Angel’s parents Martin and Christina attended the award ceremony together with Angel’s seven brothers and sisters, one cousin, and her aunt Noemi Estrada.

Angel’s mother said, “Angel is a very sweet girl. She helps to take care of the other children. She does chores. We are very proud of her.”

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Community Foundation Announces 2018 Scholarship Opportunities

Shasta Regional Community Foundation would like to remind students pursuing higher education that online applications are currently available on their website for over 25 scholarship opportunities. The online application allows for students to apply for a host of scholarships from all participating funds. “Our goal is to make the process more efficient for the students and increase their access to funds available for college,” stated Program Associate, Miriam Leal.

Students are invited to click on “Apply for a Scholarship,” create an account, and begin searching and applying for scholarships for which they are eligible. Scholarship descriptions and their deadlines can be accessed through the Community Foundation website at

All applications must be submitted online by Wednesday, March 7th, 2018 unless otherwise noted on the application.

For further information, contact: Miriam Leal, Program Associate by phone at 530-244-1219, or email

About Shasta Regional Community Foundation

The Shasta Regional Community Foundation is a resource building organization in Shasta and Siskiyou counties dedicated to promoting philanthropy by connecting people who care with causes that matter. Since 2000, the Community Foundation has awarded over $21,000,000 in grants to area nonprofit organizations. For more information, call the Shasta Regional Community Foundation at (530) 244-1219 or visit

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Christmas Songs at the Senior Center

On December 15, members of the Burney High School Choir came to the Senior Lunch at the TriCounties  Community Center to sing  a selection of traditional Christmas Carols for the senior diners. Music and band teacher Hugo Castro accompanied the students on the piano.

High School Students singing Christmas Carols at the Senior Nutrition Center – Photo by Debra Robbins

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Stuff the Ambulance Toy Drive donates toys to F Troop for delivery to kids

On the evening of December 12, members of F Troop rode to Meyers Memorial Hospital to pick up toys that they will deliver to low income children in Burney, Johnson Park, Fall River, and McArthur.


F Troop members Leslie Horney, Dee Covert, Rex Horney, and Tim Covert pick up toys from Mayers Memorial Stuff the Ambulance – photo courtesy of Leslie Horney

The toys were donated as part of the Stuff the Ambulance Toy Drive sponsored by Meyers Memorial Hospital. Collection of toys, “stuffing the ambulance,” took place at seven locations throughout the Intermountain area. This is the third year that the program has been in place.

F Troop with toys from Stuff The Ambulance

In addition to the toys from Stuff the Ambulance, F Troop has purchased more than $2000 worth of toys. The money for the toys was raised at F Troop’s annual yard sale held in Burney during the summer. Yard sale items are donated by people in the community for the project. All together the project gives out quality new toys to more than 125 children of families living in low income housing in the Intermountain Area. The club also buys new batteries for all the battery operated toys.

F Troop is the Burney affiliate of United Bikers of Northern California. They began giving out toys for kids 17 years ago when Tom Tindel was president of the club. The first year they gave out 30 Christmas stockings stuffed with toys and goodies in the Safeway parking lot. The program has grown every year since. Tom Miller succeeded Tindel as President and helped organize the program for three years.

Three years ago, under the leadership of President Greg Trotter, they began the summer yard sale so the community could be more involved. Each year, on a Saturday before Christmas, they give out the toys on a Christmas Toy Run led by Santa on a motorcycle. This year’s run will be Saturday December 16. Some of the bikers dress up as elves to help Santa deliver the toys.

See also

F Troop Christmas Toy Run

F Troop hosts run for Northern California bikers

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Filed under Burney, Fall River Mills, Johnson Park, Mayers Memorial Hospital, McArthur, Motorcycles, youth

Operation Warm Winter GIVEAWAY provides new coats and boots to 58 school children

Operation Warm Winter provided 58 elementary school children with a bag containing a nice new winter coat and winter boots at their annual GIVEAWAY at the Word of Life Assembly of God Church Gym on December 1. Pastor Ken Frazier said that the 58 children represent about 15% of the local elementary school population.

WOLA Pastor Ken Frazier, Alexus Bellino with her mom Melissa Bellino, and Kathy Newton together with five grateful children

In addition to these children, another 15 children who had not signed up in time for the giveaway are now on a waiting list and will receive coats and boots in the near future.

Alexus Bellino, a junior at Burney High School,  organized this year’s Operation Warm Winter for her Senior Project. Her mother, Melissa Bellino, came to help with the distribution.

Alexus Bellino and her mom Melissa

Ms. Bellino said, “What moved me to do this project was to give back to the community. Seeing the smiles on the children’s faces after they received their gifts was definitely the best part of the project. I hope to do it next year as well.”

Melissa Bellino chatting with a child

Bellino worked in coordination with Kathy Newton and other volunteers from WOLA.

As the children were signed up, they were supplied with paper and crayons that they used to express their gratitude in creative drawings.

Kids expressing their gratitude in colorful drawings

In addition to providing coats and boots for children, Operation Warm Winter also collected donations of gently used clothing. These clothes were neatly organized on tables and made available to people in the community who needed them. Ms. Bellino said that any leftover clothing will be donated to the American Cancer Society.

Gently used warm winter clothing for people in need

Adults and children who came to the charitable affair were also treated to hot chocolate and cookies by WOLA volunteers.

Cookies and Hot Chocolate

WOLA began Operation Warm Winter in 2007 under the coordination of Stephanie Pruitt. The purchase of the jackets and boots is made possible by donations from church members and the community. A major fundraiser for the program the past few years has been the concert by the Ohio Northern University Choir held in the late Spring.

See also:

Operation Warm Winter at WOLA Nov 11

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