2017 Graduates Recognition Ceremony Welcome Address

My name is Yvonne Roberts and I am the organizing Secretary of the African Network of SW Florida.
On behalf of our board and members, I welcome you all to the African Network of SW Florida Graduates recognition Ceremony – May 15th, 2017.

It is an honor to have so many diverse people joining in this special occasion when we show recognition to those who have made significant moves in their lives, met the demanding requirements of teachers and professors and finally graduated. We want each one of you to know, regardless of the stage you are in your studies that we value what you have achieved so far. Today, we are recognizing high school and college graduates. In addition to the graduation, we also recognize those who are doing well in school. We will therefore recognize elementary and middle school groups. We will get to know each of these amazing people later.

As we all know, it takes a village to raise a child. As Frederick Douglas stated, it is easier to raise strong children than to repair broken men and women. In African Network of SW Florida, we believe that we all have a collective responsibility to nurture our children. Part of that nurturing involve letting them know that we appreciate and recognize their achievement. That their achievement is not their own alone but for all of us. And that is why we take this recognition ceremony very seriously and appreciate all who have joined us.

Nelson Mandela reminded us that Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. Education empowers those who acquire it to make the necessary changes for a better future. We hope that the education that our graduates have acquired will enable them exploit their similarities and common goals, while appreciating the strength in their diversity.

Congrats graduates and again, welcome everyone to this important occasion.

Yvonne Roberts
Organizing Secretary