And the Award Goes To

MY Y Story: Angel Demanche

And the Award Goes To – A Journey of Impact and Dedication

“I have always loved children.  Ever since I was little, I have always said my mission in life is to impact the life of a child”.  And Angel Demanche has done just that, to many children, in her time thus far at the Y, making a great impact to many.

Angel joined the Y team in the summer of 2018 when she began working as a Teacher’s Assistant for Power Scholars Academy.  Working at the Nashua school district as a Paraprofessional, Angel had worked with the program, previously named Summer Learning Loss Prevention, through 21st Century, an after school program the Y partners with to implement the five week summer program.  Power Scholars Academy (PSA) is a summer learning loss prevention program for children who are performing below grade level and is intended to support them in reading and literature to catch up during the summer.  The Y partners with BellXcel to offer this signature program, Bell provides all the curriculum and materials as well as pre/post assessments to measure growth and lots of support. Angel immediately fell in love with the program and the Y and returned the following summer. Angel Demanche

In March of 2020 the world changed as we all knew it and greatly affected our community’s youth as school was no longer in person due to Covid-19.  Angel began working in the Y’s Educational Academy (YEA) which allowed parents to drop their children off at the Y for remote learning so they may go to work.  Angel was a Group Leader at the Merrimack site until the children returned to school full time, at which point she became the Lit/Art instructor, an enrichment component for after school through Bell, and traveled among the sites.  In 2022 the Site Director position in Merrimack became vacant and leadership at the Y immediately thought of Angel as she had been a stand out employee who was very organized and often stepped up to work toward a solution.  Angel accepted the role of Site Director while she continued to work with the school district during the day.  The Merrimack site saw immediate improvement and communication among families.  In the summer of 2023 Angel worked closely with leadership to prepare for PSA and took on the role of Program Coordinator.  Her organization and communication skills helped her be successful in the large amount of preparation it takes to run the program.  When a sudden leadership vacancy opened up in the final hour before day one, Angel barely skipped a beat.  She immediately jumped into action making sure that no families or staff were disrupted due to the sudden change.  Angel worked closely with 21st Century staff multi-tasking all avenues of communication and questions from parents, families, students and the district.  For the next five weeks she ran the program effectively as if she were the Director herself, never once complaining about the hours, the work or stress.

Angel DemancheIn the fall of 2023, Angel was offered the role of Merrimack Y Academy Site Director full time, a goal she had for a long time given her love of the Y.  “I love helping kids be the best versions of themselves and watching them grow into future leaders.  I get to have fun every day, showing children that it can be fun to learn something new.”  Due to all of Angel’s hard work at PSA the summer before, the Y received notification that she had been nominated for and would receive Arly’s Rising Star of the Year Award.  Arly, a component of Bell, issues two major awards per year, the Rising Star being one, and receives hundreds of nominations across the country.  Because of Angel’s hard work and dedication and the testimonies of those who work with her she was chosen as the recipient.  On December 14 a crowd of Arly leadership, Y employees, partners, board members, media and children gathered to surprise Angel in receiving this award.  “I nominate people for this every year” Angel shared with the attendees.

Angel will soon take on additional responsibilities at the Y, expanding her reach even more by offering support to the other Site Directors and Y Academy programs.  The Y is so lucky to have Angel on the team, and yet she feels so lucky to be at the Y, “The Y has given me the opportunity to think outside the box, to be able to empower children see their full potential, and to help them shine. I feel like I have a voice and am heard at the Y.  I am truly grateful that I was given a chance.”


Thank you to Patten Photography for sharing the amazing photos commemorating our special celebration.

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