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Youth Create Ornaments for White House

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We are thrilled to announce that a group of our residential youth had the privilege of representing Gateway-Longview and Western New York on a national level this past Christmas. Youth in the CAB program (Changing Attitude and Behaviors) were one of two organizations given the opportunity to create ornaments for a Christmas tree outside the White House.

In the months leading up to Christmas, each CAB student, under the direction of Special Education Teacher Jen Mazur, designed a beautiful and unique ornament for New York State’s tree along the Pathway of Peace located in front of the White House. The Pathway of Peace loops around the National Christmas Tree and features 56 unique Christmas trees that represent each U.S. state, the five U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia.

Lighting Ceremony For National Christmas Tree

Pathway of Peace Around the National Christmas Tree in Washington DC

Each year, organizations from every state provide tree decorations that are encased in a protective plastic globe to shield it from the weather. This year, students from CAB were selected to hand-paint scenes on CDs of Western New York’s natural beauty. Their designs included Niagara Falls, the Buffalo skyline, natural parks, and even our beloved Buffalo Bills. To create the ornaments, two CDs were hung within each plastic globe. Next, the girls in CAB made an origami blue bird to go inside each ornament to represent the New York State Bird. When completed, each ornament represented the talent and creativity of our students and the beauty of Western New York.

We’d like to thank Jen Mazur and Teresa Weston, Residential Art Therapist, for working with the students to create the ornaments. We are very proud of all of them for their creativity and diligence to complete this task. We are honored they represented Gateway with such talent and on a national level!

For more information about the Pathway of Peace, click here.