One of our Community Advisory Council members, Dr. Emma Violand-Sanchez, was recently honored by the Arlington Community Foundation (ACF) with its annual Spirit of the Community Award. ACF held a celebratory luncheon on September 27, and Vice President Tom Adams represented Encore Learning.
Dr. Violand-Sanchez founded the Dream Project in 2010. This non-profit empowers students whose immigration status creates barriers to education by working with them to access and succeed in college through scholarships, mentoring, family engagement and advocacy. In the past year, the Dream Project awarded $144,000 in scholarships to “dreamers” residing in Virginia.
Dr. Violand-Sanchez was honored for her dedication to helping low-income students, particularly in the immigrant community, overcome the disadvantages in pursuing their education, notably language barriers, parent engagement and financial need. Dr. Violand-Sanchez was the first immigrant Latino administrator in the Arlington Public Schools where she started the first bilingual education program, the first bilingual GED program in Virginia and programs for English Language learners. In 2008, she was elected to the Arlington School Public Schools Board of Education and served for two terms. We are so fortunate to have her serve on our Community Advisory Council.
Our Community Advisory Council Chair, Chris Milliken, along with her husband, member John Millken, were the co-chairs of the ACF event.
Arlington Free Clinic was also honored for its 24 years of service to those in our community who need our help in accessing health care. Thorough volunteers and donors, the Clinic provides comprehensive healthcare mainly low-income earners whose jobs don’t include access to health insurance. Last year, the Arlington Free Clinic cared for over 1,600 individuals who received close to 10,000 healthcare visits including 800 dental visits.
For more information on Dr. Violand Sanchez’s Dream Project, please visit https://www.dreamproject-va.org/
More information on the ACF Spirit of Community Awards can be found here: