Staying true to its focus of promoting youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, the YMCA awarded 51 memberships to area youths during its 2017 Keeping Our Promise program. Financial support from local individuals and corporate sponsors made the awards possible.

"Having the opportunity to make a positive impact in these children’s lives is so rewarding," Dodge City Family YMCA Branch Executive Director Jackie Regan said. "We’re extremely thankful to the sponsors who make it all possible. While winning his award, one child actually said, ‘This is the best day of my life.’"

Students who regularly demonstrate the YMCAs core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility are nominated for this award by their schools each year. The YMCA staff then surprises the recipients with their awards during all-school assemblies or in the classroom in front of their peers.

The 2017-18 recipients are listed by school:

Beeson Elementary: Perla Lopez, Jesus Lopez, Ivette Chavez, Alexa Anaya, Yari Bobadilla, Natalia Loya, Lilian Castro and Tania Rizo.

Central Elementary: Juan Soriano, Antonia Tzunux, Christopher Ruiz and Francisco Quixan.

Linn Elementary: Yaqueline Castillo, Juan Destin (JD) Melendez, Lillian Soto and Juan Carlos Bermudez.

Miller Elementary: Alex Page, Matthew Cervantes, Aleah Tapia and Marilyn Luis.

Northwest Elementary: Aiden Reynosa, Amador Peralta, Tamara Schubert, Leslie Martinez, Eric Castillo and Angel Garcia.

Ross Elementary: Cian Kreger, Giovanni Gonzalez, Kaden Dressler, Osney Barber, Alexio Lopez and Fredy Peralta.

Sacred Heart Catholic School: Jocelyn Lopez-Rodela, Alma Lopez-Rodela, Alina Beck and William Beck.

Soule Elementary: Avonte Nichols, Yajaira Ailon Gomez, Kevin Calletano Martinez, Julienne Torres, Thadon Macias, Adrian Urquiola and Montes De Oca.

Sunnyside Elementary: Melissa Santos Hipolito, Jazmina Estrella, Juan Dominguez and Erick Talamantes.

Wilroads Gardens Elementary: Itzaid Ruiz Millan, Giselle Rodriguez, Sofia Murillo and Estefany Vital Cordova.

For more information or to donate to Keeping Our Promise, contact YMCA of Southwest Kansas CEO Chad Knight at 620-937-2199 or email