For the children of Camden, it can be overwhelming to confront the challenges that no child should face daily: gang and drug recruitment, substance abuse in the home, teen pregnancy, and a struggling public school system. They are growing up in the nation’s poorest and most dangerous city, and they need help.
With a vision of breaking the cycle of poverty and hopelessness and building a more resilient community, Mark and Ann Baiada are bringing about change with their generous support of LUCY (Lifting Up Camden’s Youth) Outreach, an organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of Camden’s low-income teens and young adults by offering educational, service-oriented, spiritual, cultural, and social programs.
Support from the Baiadas helped the organization achieve a 100% high school graduation rate and a 97% college admission rate—in a city where the school dropout rate is 48%. Based on the exceptional results the organization has achieved, Baiada's continued support will permit the expansion of the LUCY College Academy, which provides college and career preparation, scholarships, and counseling to more than 350 upcoming and existing LUCY college-bound students.
LUCY is just one of the organizations that inspire the Baiadas and only one of the many examples that illustrate that they are defined by what they repeatedly do—give. It is because of this drive to seek out ways to make an impact and become personally involved--visiting the organizations, speaking with those being helped, and seeing the results of the programs they support--that the Community Foundation of South Jersey (CFSJ) presented them with the 2016 Legacy of Giving Award.
“We are honored to include two people among our Legacy of Giving Award honorees who have such a personal commitment to making the world a better place,” noted Sidney Hargro, executive director of CFSJ. “They serve as a reminder of how giving back is not only the right thing to do but also necessary for a thriving, positive community.”
Both of the Baiadas encourage their children, other family members, and BAYADA colleagues to follow their passion and get involved. They set an example, often rolling up their sleeves to humbly participate in events, or leading the charge to raise money.
“Mark and Ann’s actions prove they believe strongly in creating a lasting legacy of helping others,” added Hargro, who worked with the Baiadas to create a family fund at CFSJ through which they can support their favorite organizations in perpetuity. Watch how the Baiadas have been inspiring examples of giving to family, colleagues, and community members alike.
This summer, Mark Baiada announced he will gift BAYADA Home Health Care to a newly created foundation that will prevent the company from ever being sold and perpetuate the company’s mission for the next 100 years and beyond. Read more about the Lasting Legacy Plan.