Posted in : Testimonials
My name is Jim Crescenzo and I am a retired film and theatre teacher as well as the founder of the East End Boys Club Society, a charitable organization that works with atrisk young men between the ages of 12-25. Our mission is to engage youth and keep them in school. Our club is unique because we offer year-round theatre and film programs which foster skill development and self-esteem. Through these artistic endeavours our members learn work ethics, communication, critical thinking, creative expression and emotional intelligence. Audiences are amazed by the level of professionalism that is evident in our stage productions and films which have won numerous awards from city, provincial, national and international competitions.
Mr. Danny Virtue is an advisor to our teaching staff. To maintain our high standards, we surround our youth with the best mentors from the film industry. Mr. Virtue has been our conduit to this industry for more than 20 years. He personally arranges introductions and meetings with artists and our East End Boys Club members. He has invited and hosted many of our young students on the sets of his filmmaking projects. He has also played an integral role in arranging guest speakers for our weekly leadership meetings. These guest speakers come from all walks of life, they share their own stories of adversity and success.
Our members and their families have repeatedly attended the Summer Celebration at the Virtue Studios and Ranch in held annually in August. This is a fun-filled day which includes some of the best stunt demonstrations anywhere. This event is free to all who attend and provides a great outing to many young men and women who would
otherwise not have this opportunity. One of the memorable parts of this event is the spirit of giving that resonates from the positive environment that Mr. Virtue creates for his guests.
In addition, the Virtue Foundation has been generous in offering financial support to students in need, for school fees, photos, annuals, uniforms, transit passes and lunches. The foundation has also assisted our members with funds for post-secondary courses and books. These acts of kindness have played a significant part in the success of our members. Mr. Virtue continues to mentor our film students who have an interest in pursuing a career in the film industry. One of our students worked on a television series called, "Sea" and became one of the youngest people to be accepted into the Director's Guild.
I am grateful for the positive impact that Mr. Virtue and his Foundation have made on our students and our community.
Founder and Executive Director, East End Boys Club Society