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2011 Austin Voices Shout Out Awards
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Joined on August 18th, 2007
2011 Austin Voices Shout Out Awards
by langhugh on April 7th, 2011

I would like to invite you to an amazing party on April 12th at the HighBall where you will hob-nob with local celebrities, musicians, and politicians, get sloshed, and donate a little money for a GREAT cause. If that is all the convincing you need, just RSVP at this link, and select Dusty Harshman as your ‘event host’ for a Mueller Night Out. We’ll laugh, drink, eat, maybe bowl a few frames, sing a little Karaoke…you know, a regular Tuesday night. If you believe in the power of communities to improve neighborhood schools, then this will be the easiest $50-$100 you will ever spend.

If you’d like to know a little more about ‘WHY’ you are joining us for the Austin Voices 2011 Shout-Out Awards…well, do I have a story for you.

Austin Voices for Education and Youth (AVEY) is the most important education-focused non-profit in Austin. I learned about the organization when it was under the leadership of Amy Averett, a parent at Maplewood. She would describe the work of Austin Voices in these amazing themes of empowering East Austin students to speak for themselves and commanding communities to take responsibility for their neighborhood schools. I started following the organization and trying to understand exactly how they did it. Some fellow Maplewood parents, Jim and Scheleen Walker, invited me to the 2010 Austin Voices Shout-Out Awards at the High-Ball to show me how, and I have been smitten by AVEY ever since. Not only did I laugh my tail off, I was quite amazed by the talents of the student and parent award winners.

While Amy has since turned over leadership of Austin Voices over to Allen Weeks, the organization has become even more relevant to East Austin schools. Allen is absolutely someone you want to run through walls to help. He has organized several campaigns in recent years to help East Austin campuses, and can largely be credited with opening Family Resource Centers at Webb, Dobie, and Pearce Middle Schools, not to mention AVEY’s amazing 2010 accomplishments:

• 724 Student-Leaders Trained and Mobilized
• 436 High School dropouts Re-enrolled in high school
• 806 Families served by a social worker at an AVEY Family Resource Center
• 6,480 attendees at AVEY-sponsored workshops, forums, and school community conversations

You can easily see why I said that Austin Voices for Education and Youth is the most important education-focused non-profit in Austin. AVEY just makes things happen in a world where there is a lot of cheap talk.
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