The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Change happens one event at a time


Betty Williamson

Portales High School senior Danyka Chaves is a teenager on a mission: “To make Portales fun again.”

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Danyka chairs a group of students called the Youth Coalition of Roosevelt County. In its first few months of existence, the group has hosted a school dance and screened two family-friendly movies, most recently “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2” at the PHS Performing Arts Center Saturday night.

Next up? “A basketball tournament to go along with March Madness,” Danyka says.

It’s easy to join the chorus of “there’s nothing for kids to do” in a community. Danyka and the rest of the Youth Coalition — most of whom met each other participating in Teen Court — are determined to change that, one event at a time.

“We want to create fun entertainment in an age-appropriate, friendly, safe way,” Danyka said. “We want to show kids you can have fun without getting in trouble.”

The Coalition was started by Riki Seat, the DWI program coordinator for Roosevelt County, but she’s quick to give credit to Danyka and the other students. “Danyka is 135 percent committed to this,” she said. “I am so proud of her.”

The Coalition meets each Friday at lunch at Portales High School. Anyone interested in learning more, or lending a helping hand, may contact Seat at 359-1048 or email her at [email protected]

Betty Williamson tips her hat to our community’s problem solvers. You may reach her at [email protected]


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