Kelly’s Angels, the charity that supports children who have lost a parent or caregiver, has expanded its scholarship program to include Lake George and Mechanicville, founder Mark Mulholland has announced.
The organization will award two Lake George High graduating seniors scholarships worth $1,500 each in 2024 and every year thereafter, said Mulholland, an anchor and reporter for Albany-based News Channel 13.
“The Lake George community has wrapped its arms around Kelly’s Angels, and we are excited to be able to help students in the district,” Mulholland said.
In 2024, Kelly’s Angels will distribute $36,000 in scholarship aid to students in twelve schools, Mulholland
announced at the Lake George Jr-Sr High School on October 12. He was joined by former Mayor Bob Blais, Superintendent John Luthringer, Director of Guidance Services Stephen Preuss and High School Principal Fran Cocozza.
“We’re honored that Kelly’s Angels is now helping graduating students who’ve persevered in the face of adversity,” said Cocozza.
Mulholland founded the non-profit organization in 2009 to honor the memory of his late wife Kelly, a victim of cancer at the age of 37.
A Queensbury Central School teacher at the time of her death in 2007, Kelly Mulholland began her career at the Lake George Elementary School, said Mulholland.
She was “one of those teachers who stay in her classroom ‘till 11 o’clock at night to make certain everything is perfect at the start of the day, who loved children,” he said.
“She loved Lake George. So we’re thrilled to be able to add Lake George to the roster of schools whose students receive our support,” said Mulholland.
This past summer, the organization held a new fundraising event in Lake George titled “Kelly’s Angels Summer-Lovin’ Fest,” which raised $20,000.
“Lake George will be the site of an annual fundraiser every July – another reason why it’s fitting that we provide scholarships to Lake George High seniors who have persevered in the face of adversity,” said Mulholland.
Now in its 13th year, Kelly’s Angels provides “Fun Grants” to children, “Angel Hugs” to care givers and “Angel Aid” to struggling families, as well as college scholarships.
Mulholland told Director of Counseling Stephen Preuss that the charity will seek his assistance as it begins the process of identifying students who have overcome obstacles and are deserving of a Kelly’s Angels scholarship.
Mulholland said that adversity comes in many forms – the loss of a parent or a sibling to cancer, illness, a disability, bullying, said Mulholland.
“While we can’t protect our children from the challenges and hardships of life, these scholarships are a way to celebrate some amazing local students and remind them that, even in the face of adversity, they are not alone,” said Mulholland. “It is our hope that these scholarships will inspire them to continue to persevere, earn a college degree and find joy along the way.”
According to Mulholland, Kelly’s Angels is on track to raise and distribute $100,000 in 2023.
Most of the funds used to fulfill the charity’s mission are raised through an annual 5K race on Mother’s Day, which attracts as many as 1,600 people to Saratoga Spa State Park.
This past year, Kelly’s Angels adopted an additional mission – raising funds to support Ukrainian children whose families have fled the war and who are now living in the Capital District. In addition to raising cash, the initiative organizes activities for the children, such as field trips and rollerskating outings.