Local nonprofit presents Guiding Hand Award to the Springfield Thunderbirds

Hampden County

The Springfield Thunderbirds were presented the Guiding Hand Award at the MassMutual Center Friday afternoon.  

The Thunderbirds were recognized for the work they did with the ‘I Found Light Against All Odds’ nonprofit, for at-risk students at the Springfield High School of Science and Technology. The team has dedicated significant time and effort into developing the students at the school’s Fresh Start Program during the 2018-2019 school year. 

The nonprofit ‘I Found Light Against All Odds’ works to provide ‘high-risk youth’ and families with tools and opportunities to overcome and conquer life issues. Their goal is to inspire others to never give up.  

Stefan Davis, the founder of the non-profit, ‘I Found Light Against All Odds’ honored the Springfield Thunderbirds for helping Davis with students in the Fresh Start Program at the Springfield High School of Science and Technology. 

‘I Found Light Against All Odds’ board members, including 22News Anchor Ciara Speller, joined students Friday afternoon for a mentoring session with American International College at the MassMutual Center.

These students, preparing to go to college and enter the workforce, have seen their prospects improve since being given a second chance.

“I would say life has changed a lot, self-esteem, I came up a lot and definitely motivation,” said Joshua Lopez, a senior at Springfield H.S. of Science and Technology.

Another senior at the high school, Ezequiel Encarnacion said, “I’m not alone, really helped me with my work, when I was down, I picked myself up.”

Since Springfield Thunderbirds employee Nicole Taylor began mentoring Sci-Tech students months ago, she’s found it more rewarding than she can imagine.

“I feel like they’re more of a beneift to me, I’ve learned so much, just learning a bit more about myself,” Taylor said.

Since Stefan Davis founded his non-profit several years ago, Davis feels he’s had a positive impact on the lives of several hundred Springfield high school students. The Thunderbirds focus is to create positive opportunities for at-risk youth to enable them to aspire for a brighter future. 

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