My First Home For The Holidays
Annually in December
Each year, around 150-200 youth participants, volunteers, staff, investors, and board members come together for an annual holiday celebration, My First Home For The Holidays. Staff and volunteers come together to create a specially-themed winter wonderland complete with crafts, games, and a holiday boutique where youth receive a Santa bag stuffed to the brim with gifts that they can keep for themselves or give to their friends and family! The aroma of the holidays fills the room from co-sponsors, Bekker’s Catering, who present a festive lunch spread featuring traditional dishes such as roasted turkey, baked ham, savory stuffing, creamy mashed potatoes, baked mac n’ cheese, green bean almondine, and an assortment of freshly-prepared desserts.
Most importantly, My First Home for the Holidays celebrates an uplifting year of accomplishments and recognizes the growth and efforts of the resilient youth we serve. A highlight of the event is the awarding of three prizes to youth who have made a real impression through their involvement, growth, and spirit throughout the year: the “Connected,” “Confident,” and “Capable” awards! Each awardee shares a compelling and heartfelt story about their life and speaks about how the journey to becoming confident, connected, and/or capable was made possible by the support of the JIT community. Each powerful story is brimming with emotion and personal pride, and inspires the entire room!
Special thanks to the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, who have helped make our My First Home event possible year after year! If you would like to be involved in My First Home for the Holidays, please feel free to contact us at any time.
2022 Award Winners:
Lealiki Sykes (Confident), Nyla Vivas (Capable), Azucena Wells (Connected), and Nancy Rodallegas (Triple Threat)
Past Award Winners:
2021: Angie Torres (Confident), Torin Herbst (Capable), Syona Menard (Connected) Jason Bronicki (Triple Threat) • 2020: Delilah Ramirez (Confident), Nina Desmond (Capable), Kai GiVogue (Connected) • 2019: Liliana Ramirez (Confident), Karla Miranda-Torres (Connected), Mckayla Shelton (Capable) • 2018: Angie Disbrow, Emilio Carranza-Davis, Marquita Scott • 2017: Vivianna Penn, Janeth Gonzales, Salvador Terrones • 2016: Alex Pleitez, Haniyyah Haqq, Alejandra ‘Allie’ Castellanos, Race Haddad • 2015: Maria Arriaga, Hakim Dysart, Porche Cooper, Victoria Willis • 2014: Tashara Gaskill, Darius Pinckney, Janitzza Cazares, Gina Delahoussaye