NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. (May 26, 2017) — Amber Fry will graduate from Gulf High School in New Port Richey this year and has dreams of becoming a nurse. She’s been accepted to Pasco Hernando College in the fall and plans to attend a four-year college after earning her Associates Degree.
This achievement has not been without its obstacles. Amber has been in the foster system for most of her life and managed to graduate from high school with straight A’s while dealing with the many challenges that have come her way.
“Amber is a self-motivated, energetic student with a positive outlook even with the obstacles she has been given in life,” said Katherine Creighton, registrar at Gulf High School. “As a matter of fact, had I not made an effort to get to know her better I would’ve never known the struggles that she faces every day.”
While Amber was busy focusing on her studies, Christina Barzelay was looking for a deserving candidate to sponsor through Watermark for Kids – a national nonprofit associated with Watermark Retirement Communities. Watermark manages 39 communities throughout the U.S, including The Watermark at Trinity in Pasco County where Barzelay serves as the community life director.
She connected with Ann Donlon, career specialist at Gulf High School, who recommended Amber to be sponsored.
“Amber was the first person who came to mind when Christina approached me about sponsoring one of our students,” said Donlon. “She’s a hardworking student and has a bright future ahead of her.”
After speaking with Donlon, Barzelay set the wheels in motion to present Amber with a new laptop for college on Gulf High School’s Senior Night of Excellence. On May 17, Amber received a Lenovo laptop along with the full suite of Microsoft Office software.
“It was such an honor to present Amber with this gift,” said Barzelay. “She’s such an inspiration and we are so happy that we could support her in her journey to becoming a nurse.”
Watermark for Kids is committed to empowering underserved kids from ages 6 through 22 to express their character, leadership, creativity, compassion and spirit. Since 2011, they have honored 15 other kids in the greater Tampa Bay area in partnership with The Watermark at Trinity’s sister properties The Fountains at Boca Ciega Bay in St. Petersburg and The Fountains at Lake Pointe Woods in Sarasota. Awards ranged from art, music and dance lessons to funds to cover books and supplies for college.
Amber will graduate from Gulf High School on Friday, May 26 and will begin classes at Pasco Hernando State College this fall.
About Watermark for Kids
Watermark for Kids is a national non-profit organization whose vision is to help deserving local kids thrive. Funds are raised through payroll deductions and fundraising projects spearheaded by residents and associates of 38 Watermark retirement communities nationwide. In return, Watermark Kids are asked to “pay it forward” by mentoring others and vowing to help another youth in their own unique way. To learn more visit www.watermarkforkids.org.
About The Watermark at Trinity
Located in Trinity, Fla., The Watermark at Trinity is a 117-apartment assisted living and memory care community in the Pasco County suburb of Trinity. Differentiators of the new community include certified associates, continuous care and hands-on educational programming. Owned and managed by Watermark Retirement Communities, The Watermark at Trinity is committed to creating an extraordinary community where people thrive.