Local couple aims to help disadvantaged youths

Photo courtesy Ny-la Guerrero
Ny-la Guerrero and her husband have a goal of building a foundation to help disadvantaged youths beginning with a basketball league in 2020.

Glendale residents George Guerrero and his wife, Ny-la, have always wanted to help disadvantaged at-risk youths and now they have their sights set on building an organization called Project New Generation.

Based in Glendale, Project New Generation is building on the idea to provide programs and services for at-risk kids, a dream they have had for years after working with numerous organizations.

“I have worked for various companies advocating for children with disabilities to get the resources they need in Arizona,” George said. “I have worked with a lot of major companies in the state to help those kids that need the help, when I realized I could do more, and wanted to make a difference.”

Having grown up in New York, George’s mother stoked his love of helping youths because she worked for child protective services and would occasionally take him with her to work.

“She worked for CPS in New York and would take me to work and it showed me how hard work could help those that needed help,” George said.

When he was 10 years old, his mother fell down a flight of stairs and became paralyzed, but continued to work and help others.

“While growing up, and after her accident, she showed me how you could make a difference in kids’ lives,” George said. “She would take me to work every day to show me that life is not just about you and there are more unfortunate people than me.”

When they moved to Glendale a few years ago, they realized that disadvantaged youths in the state were being misplaced or ignored.

“Having worked with these kids, I realized working in group homes that kids were not using the abilities they actually have,” George said. “They were just sitting in their homes and basically just not getting the opportunities they deserve, so we decided we had to make a difference and Arizona needed what we want to do.”

They wanted to help empower the youths and open doors for the next generation who have behavioral and mental issues, are runaways, abused teens, drug addicts or homeless in improving their lives.

“Our goal is to make a difference and help the kids that need the most help,” Ny-La said. “I know that (George) is one of the most focused people I have ever met and when he sets his mind to something, he usually accomplishes it.”

They decided the best way to begin was a youth basketball league that he plans to start in summer 2020. Along with the basketball teams, they plan to offer internships in social media, video production, advertising and anything else youths might be interested in.

“We decided basketball was a good start because everyone loves basketball and there are so many other opportunities within the sport,” George said. “Plus, boys and girls can come together and play the sport at the same time in a co-ed game.”

While he plans on it being a competitive league, with all range of disabilities included, his hope is to have different styles of leagues. His plan is for the association to be a coed 5-on-5 girl and boy team play, with opportunities for both junior high and high school students, including children with developmental disabilities.

They hope to have a regular season incorporating drafts, playoffs and championship games over the summer. They also want to invite all schools and other leagues in Arizona to allow the teams or individual youths who may play on their respective programs to join their program. Students would be required to meet certain needs, such as maintaining at least a 3.0 GPA.

“My hope is that we can mold the kids together and have separate leagues, but it will give them the opportunity to show their abilities and see how they can get every opportunity to go to college if that is what they want to do,” Ny-La said. “Kids must maintain the grades or they will not be able to play or intern in any other area they may want to participate in.”

George’s ultimate goal is for the league to be competitive and Project New Generation would offer college scholarships to the winners of the league each season.

“Our main goal is for kids to learn for themselves what they want for their future and we want to show them that they can do whatever they set their mind to,” George said. “If they want to go to college, and their team wins, then we want to offer them that chance.”

They said they have talked to numerous mayors in the state including Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers and Peoria Mayor Cathy Carlat, as well as numerous local schools where the games could be played, about assisting the kids in the area.

Their goal is not only to help children, but they also want to show how focused they are in helping those children achieve their goals.

“This means everything to me to be able to show that you have achievements, goals and determination and healing because a lot of these kids are growing up with no families and we can help them and show them they can do whatever they want,” Ny-La said. “This is not just for me, it is for the world and we can take the time to make the world unified the way it is supposed to be and we can make the world so much better and show that all things are possible and feel like they are back at a candy store and make the selection they want.”

George’s goal is after the summer basketball starts in 2020 for Project New Generation to expand with a residential facility that will tie in together with the basketball league. He is aiming for the residential facility, including a youth center, to open in 2022.

“I have big ideas and dreams but am focused on making a difference throughout Arizona,” George said. “Everything I am doing is aimed at helping disadvantaged children and helping them achieve their dreams.”

“We will not end there. I feel it is not here but it should be and this is the one place this can work,” George said. “It is a fact that no one has the time to look for it because they are distracted, but my idea will be a beneficial distraction. Come join us and we will take it from there.”

For more information or to help with volunteering, call 623-219-9097.

The Glendale Star

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Glendale, AZ 85301-2436
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Peoria Times

Peoria Times
7122 N. 59th Ave
Glendale, AZ 85301-2436
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