JLA ad for 2009 TORCH Benefit & L.I.G.H.T. Awards

My ad for the 2009 TORCH Benefit & L.I.G.H.T. Awards journal

If you are reading this blog, you know that my work requires that I travel… a lot.  By the end of 2009, I will have spent nearly 5 months out of this year educating people about their sexual health and pleasure through safer sex in Bali, Burkina Faso, Canada, China, Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Russia, South Africa and Thailand.

But I always come home to New York, and to The TORCH Program.  TORCH is dedicated to transforming the lives of underserved New York City public high school students by providing intensive exposure to career training and opportunities in communications and the arts, all while facilitating a meaningful way of increasing the diversity of the workforce in those industries.  Encouraging them to be more than just passive consumers in our culture, we help to give our students the tools they need to meet their educational and career goals.  TORCH is my home when I’m not away from home, and I would feel lost in NYC without them.

TORCH at Porter Novelli, October 2009

TORCH at Porter Novelli, October 2009

Debi, thank you so much for being so supportive of my work in the global community and for always welcoming me home to The TORCH Program office with open arms and a listening ear.

Peter, thank you for making me feel a part of not only the TORCH family, but yours and Elizabeth’s as well.

Lexi, thank you for your tremendous energy,  and for stepping in and (to quote you on Twitter) carrying my TORCH while I am across the globe.

Jennifer and Jacques, thank you for all of your time and for being such a wonderful support network for our organization, who wishes that we could clone you and afford to put you to work all year long!

Porter Novelli, thank you for making your office a second home for TORCH and our participants – you never cease to amaze us, and your boundless enthusiasm has truly given a new meaning to “Together Our Resources Can Help.”

And to Alice, Andy, Ashanti, Camille, David, Ewelina, Hui Lin, Karlene, Kayleen, Kilsys, Lola, Naomi, Nilay, Omo, Qian Yi, Sammy, Sasha, Sophia, Taiquan, Tolan, Wesley, Willy, Yvonne and Zanita – I will miss seeing your faces over the coming weeks, but always know that you can reach out to me via email if ever you need to.

In the meantime… do your homework!  Go to class, and make an extra special effort to be on time (especially to 1st period – if I’m talking to you, you know who you are 😉 ).  Arrive early to TORCH programming when you can, and always remember to be active listeners and to say thank you to your mentors.  Study for your SATs and pass those Regents!  I can’t wait to hear all about your fall semesters and new college aspirations…  And ladies, hang tight – we’ll do that How to Walk in Heels workshop as soon as I come home!

Have an amazing 10th Anniversary 2009 TORCH Benefit & L.I.G.H.T. Awards on Monday, and know that I wish I could be there 🙂  I’ll be thinking of you…

Much love as always,
Joy Lynn
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