SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – Seven Bay Area teens will be recognized for their community service and leadership on Thursday, January 31st, when the Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco presents the 2013 Charles Schwab Citywide Youth of the Year.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee will present one of the teens with a $10,000 scholarship. The remaining nominees will receive $1,000 towards their education.

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The Youth of the Year program was founded more than 60 years ago and nominees are selected based on their distinguished service to family, school, the community and their Boys & Girls Club while overcoming challenges. The program is a three-month long leadership development program.

KCBS’ Connie C. Kim talks to Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco President Rob Connolly:

Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco President Rob Connolly calls the seven nominees “amazing young people with tremendous resiliency, tremendous poise. They’ve just done an amazing job of really focusing on their own futures, optimizing all the opportunities at the Boys and Girls Clubs and they’re super role models for all the other kids in the clubhouses.”

Each finalist will share their personal stories of overcoming hardships at the annual luncheon held at Palace Hotel in San Francisco.

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“It’s also a great opportunity for our audience to hear the challenges that young people face in the city,” Connolly spoke of the upcoming event, “and there’s more that we can do as a city and individuals to help meet our young people’s needs and to help remove barriers to their success.”

The Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco has been around since 1891, and currently serves more than 1,200 children and teens each day, offering a safe place to learn and grow.

The 2013 Youth of the Year nominees include Naim Algaheim, Tenderloin Clubhouse; Mario Borajas, Columbia Park Clubhouse; Brianna Benson, Visitacion Valley Clubhouse; Dayra Bonales, Mission Clubhouse; Iesha Gosman, Willie Mays Clubhouse at Hunters Point; Imani Payton, Camp Mendocino; and Hector Sanchez, Excelsior Clubhouse.

“They inspire us to keep doing the work we’re doing,” Connolly says.

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