This year, the National Youth Committee hosted a Society-wide search for young people doing amazing work in their community. Vincentians from around the Country nominated youth from their Councils for the new Alice Garvey Excellence in Youth Award which will be presented at the National Assembly in Baltimore.
The committee would now like to spotlight the winners of this prestigious award. “Each and every single one of our nominees we have shared with you over the last few weeks displayed hope for the future of the Society. Youth from all over the country are doing amazing acts of charity on behalf of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul,” said John Paul Brissette, National Youth Committee Member. “Although they were all deserving of this award, two nominations stood out. The winners of this award showed how they are embodying the Vincentian charism of faith, friendship, and service in their daily lives through the works they do. The Youth Committee is proud to introduce you to the first of our two winners.”
The Youth Committee hopes the stories of each youth spotlighted over the last few weeks has encouraged and motivated you to inspire youth to get involved in your local Diocese.
Mia Humphrey – San Diego Diocesan Council
Mia Humphrey served her Conference, St. John Mini Vinnies, as the president two out of the five years the Conference has existed. I heard that the “aging Society” needs to provide opportunities for our youth, and let them stand on our shoulders to see what more can be done. With Vincentians like Mia, I see that we can provide them with spiritual guidance, and allow them to do the great things God is calling them to do.
In 2018, Mia began her service by attending the SVdP National Assembly in San Diego and she went all in from there. During this time, her father had just passed away. Mia was strong in supporting her mother and brother. Mia’s energy, positive attitude, and passion are testament to her strength. Mia is stronger than many many adults I know. In the midst of this personal struggle, she supported and nourished her Mini Vinnies to grow. Mia was responsible for her Conference’s “Yarn Hearts” project. The Mini Vinnies created hearts out of yarn to provide to adults to give out on Home Visits. Each heart came with a handwritten message of love attached.
Mia is an excellent role model and has been instrumental in bringing youth to the Conference and keeping them engaged. During the Covid months, when face-to-face meetings were limited, Mia led her Conference through these challenging times and continued to meet each first Friday on Zoom in spirituality, friendship, and service. When the Society was informed of a pregnant woman in need, Mia jumped at the opportunity to help plan a baby shower for the mother over Zoom and provide beautiful gifts for the new baby. In addition to keeping our parish’s Mini Vinnies together, Mia has welcomed the challenge of inviting other youth from nearby parishes to open similar groups.
Mia graduated high school this spring and is excited to start college in the fall, she looks to carry on her Vincentian passion at the University of Portland. She embraces all the Vincentian qualities. She is positive, generous, humble, gentle, zealous, loving, and fun. She has strong leadership skills, and happily serves anyone in need. The Vincentian charisms of spirituality, friendship, and service are an integral part of her daily life and this is why I nominated Mia Humphrey for the Alice Garvey Excellence in Youth Award.
Best wishes to Mia as she heads off to college. May she always live using the virtues of SVDP to spread God’s love to those in need.