Partnership for After School Education

Biography

Nominated by youth in his program, Michael has been a leader and partner in the fight against the spread of HIV and AIDS among adolescents for over 12 years.  As the founder of the Hell’s Kitchen AIDS Project/Hell’s Kitchen Action Programs (HKAP), he has provided comprehensive health education and HIV prevention programs for young people living or going to school in School District Two.  In addition to doing direct health outreach in the schools, Michael established a youth employment initiative, which hires young people from the community to provide afterschool and Saturday homework help, and to distribute health education materials monthly to sites around the neighborhood.  With Michael’s guidance, the young people in the program have also created a neighborhood food pantry, which delivers food to needy families in Hell’s Kitchen.  Michael is committed to including health education in every aspect of the program, and to empowering young people to take care of themselves and others in their community.  HKAP takes a holistic approach to HIV prevention and young people, stressing total physical, emotional, and spiritual wellness.  By supporting youth in all aspects of their lives, HKAP empowers them to make good decisions and lead healthier lives.  Michael is also particularly proud that the program has helped five of its young people secure full scholarships to Marymount Manhattan College.  A young person at HKAP sums it up well by saying, “He has taught us the value in helping others.”