Yudith Vargas

Daily Point of Light # 3385 Jan 24, 2007

Yudith has been a volunteer at the Southwest Community Health Center since the summer of 2002, putting in over 500 hours of service. She began by volunteering in the medical records department, but later took on much more responsibility, such as becoming a member of the clinic's TAG team. The TAG team consisted of a group of teenagers willing to go out into the community and let the people in this mostly impoverished area know what medical services were available to them. The Southwest part of Santa Rosa has a large Latino population with few families having medical or dental insurance. This group of youngsters also provided this needed information at health fairs and in the schools in the area.

Yudith became full Director on the Board of Directors at Southwest Community Health Center five years ago, the youngest member ever voted on this board. Yudith has been a volunteer at Memorial Hospital in the Post-Partum and Nursery Departments from 2003 until the Present day. In this capacity she has already volunteered over 250 hours. Yudith was a member of the Key Club from 2002-2004, spending countless hours promoting youth participation in community service activities.

She is also a member of the Elsie Allen Health Center Advisory Committee where she volunteered to make bilingual presentations to parents of students at EAHS. Her subject was to address the importance of Protecting Yourself: Birth Control and Safer Sex for those teens that chose to be sexually active. An especially large number of very young girls were becoming pregnant at this high school. After intervening with information and providing birth control means to those requesting it, the pregnancy rate dropped over 40%.

Yudith belonged to the Interact Club sponsored by Rotary International for three years, from 2001-2004. She was elected President her last year and guided her fellow volunteers in the numerous community projects they pursued. There is a possibility that upon completion of her college years that she may travel to other countries representing Rotary. She has already been approached.

While attending Sonoma State University, Yudith has been secretary of the SSU Pre-health club. She has also been a member of the SSU Student Health Advisory Committee since the fall of 2004. No matter where she goes, she immediately volunteers in an attempt to help others. This is one of the reasons she was given the Sonoma County Youth Award in May of 2005, the one young person chosen for the entire county.

Yudith's work with the Teen Advisory Group at Elsie Allen High School produced a powerful, portable mural. The mural consists of several students and focuses on the message "To thine own self be true". It silently asks youths to not give in to teen pressure and to find their own true internal voice. Yudith Vargas has found her internal voice and has found a way to encourage and help others of all ages to find theirs and to give them the strength and hope they need in finding it.