Township Council Recognizes Volunteers, PTSD Month

Nicholas Renda, center, was commended June 13 by the Township Council for his service on the Human Relations Commission. Pictured to his right is HRC chairman Gary Rosenthal and, to his left, Township Councilman Rajiv Prasad.

A student member of a township commission, a charitable foundation and awareness of PTSD were recognized June 13 by the Township Council.

Nicholas Renda, a Franklin High School senior who was a junior member of the township’s Human Relations Commission for two years, was commended by the council for his work.

“(T)he Township of Franklin has benefited greatly because of Nicholas’ leadership and work with the Franklin Township Soccer Club Family Fun Day and Top Buddy Soccer as well as with Saint Matthias Church with the Summer SONday Group,” according to the commendation. “(T)he citizens of our community are proud of how Nicholas has represented our Township during his tenure as a Franklin High School student and a member of the Human Relations Commission.”

Commission chairman Gary Rosenthal said Renda “has really helped us with situations at the high school and the Board of Education.”

“We wish him all the luck in the world,” Rosenthal said.

“It’s been an honor to work with and contribute to such an honorable commission,” Renda said. “I look forward to taking the things that I learned and using them in my life after high school.”

Prasad reads the commendation of the Martin Luther King Community Foundation.

The council also recognized the Martin Luther King Community Foundation on its 20th anniversary. The MLK Foundation hosts the annual community breakfast on Martin Luther King Day, and raises money for scholarships for FHS students.

The foundation has awarded 167 students $177,400 in scholarships since 1998, according to the proclamation.

The breakfast “has become a true community celebration – reflecting on the richness and diversity of the Township, while providing scholarships for its Franklin youth,” the proclamation read.

Eva Nagy, who created the event with former schools Superintendent Frank Pepe and former Police Chief Daniel Livak, thanked the council for the proclamation.

“It is one of the most wonderful, diverse events,” she said of the breakfast. “It brings people together, we forge new friendships, new partnerships. We get to know the beauty of our community. It’s a way to keep Dr. King’s dream alive.”

Alex Kharazi, an MLK Community Foundation board member, also thanked the businesses and houses of worship that contributed to the scholarship fund over the years.

“The businesses and various houses of worship have done a fantastic job,” he said.

The council also passed a proclamation recognizing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Month.

Township Councilwoman Shanel Robinson reads the proclamation recognizing PTSD Month.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is most commonly associated with combat veterans, but it can affect anyone, Mayor Phil Kramer said.

“Just because you haven’t been to war, don’t think you’re immune to this,” he said. “Chronic diseases can lead to the same kind of symptoms and problems. This is something that affects the entire community.”

Township Councilwoman Shanel Robinson (D-At Large) read the proclamation, and called up to the podium three members of the organization “Team Red, White and Blue.”

Robinson met the team members– Howard Rosenblatt, his wife, Maryann Imroth and team captain Julie Daigle – after the township’s Memorial Day observance, when they appeared at Veterans Memorial Park carrying an American flag after having run through the township.

The organization’s mission is to help veterans re-connect with their communities through social and physical activity.

“We also generate wonderful partnerships with all kind of other organizations seeking to do the same mission,” Daigle said. “We’re looking to create opportunities for our veterans to get engaged, it gives them a little bit of hope.”


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