Citi hosted its first Citi Pond Kids program at Citi Pond at Bryant Park on Friday, Feb. 3, to benefit 50 children from the YMCA of Greater New York. Torino 2006 Olympic Games silver medalist figure skater Sasha Cohen was on hand to help inspire and motivate the kids, ages 8 to 10, from the Y After School Academy, the Y’s after-school program located at P.S. 57 in Harlem, at 11:00 a.m.
Citi Pond Kids, a new addition to the Citi sponsorship community platform, is a program designed to help young people in the community reach their fullest potential in life by providing them with motivational and educational experiences.
The event featured a talk from Cohen rooted in mentoring and education followed by a short performance by the Olympic silver medalist. She then spent time on the Citi Pond ice providing helpful skating tips to the kids from the Y.
Cohen is currently an ambassador and Board Member for Figure Skating in Harlem, a not-for-profit organization that provides girls ages 6 to 18 with vital educational and skating opportunities that builds self-worth and promotes physical well-being and academic achievement.
“We are thrilled to have Sasha Cohen lace up her skates and share her experiences as an athlete and ambassador for figure skating here at Citi Pond with these wonderful kids,” said Bill Brown, Manhattan Division Director, Citibank. “Her hard work, determination and commitment to giving back to others are great attributes that we at Citi share and strive for on a daily basis. We are proud to offer programs such as Citi Pond Kids to help positively impact the lives of young children in New York.”
“I look forward to participating in this initial Citi Pond Kids program at Citi Pond at Bryant Park,” said Cohen. “This is a wonderful opportunity to provide these children with a unique and fun experience, and I want to commend Citi for their commitment to local communities and thank them for including me in this important initiative.”
The inaugural Citi Pond Kids program participants were the YMCA of Greater New York, the city’s largest youth services organization which is dedicated to building healthy, confident, connected and secure children, adults, families and communities. With a focus on youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, the Y nurtures the potential of every youth and teen, improves New York City’s health and well-being and provides opportunities to give back and support neighbors. In scores of neighborhoods across the five boroughs and its camp upstate, the Y makes accessible the support and opportunities that empower more than 500,000 New Yorkers to learn, grow and thrive.
“The YMCA of Greater New York is honored to be a part of this exciting event with Citi Pond Kids and Olympic silver medalist Sasha Cohen,” said Gary Laermer, Chief Development Officer of the YMCA of Greater New York. “At the Y, we believe that all kids are champions. Whether it’s on the ice, on the court or in the classroom, the Y believes that every kid should have the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive in this great City.”
In addition to Cohen, Mr. Brown from Citi also addressed the kids before they received lunch and a gift-bag.
Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.