NAHMA National Poster Contest Winners Highlight Importance of Being Helpful
Haneen Ames, an 11th grader from Toms River, N.J., has been named the grand prizewinner in NAHMA’s annual AHMA Drug-Free Kids poster and art contest. The talented artist’s creation will appear on the cover of NAHMA’s 2024 calendar. Haneen, 16, also receives an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., for a NAHMA Biannual Top Issues in Affordable Housing conference and a scholarship of $2,500 from the NAHMA Educational Foundation.
The poster contest is open to children and senior residents 55 years or older who live in a community of a NAHMA or a local AHMA member company, as well as residents with special needs who live in a permanent supportive housing community or Section 811 community of a NAHMA or a local AHMA member company.
The underlying message for the annual contest is always a drug-free theme. Still, the association wanted to open the door for more avenues of expression, so a subtheme is incorporated into the poster contest. The subtheme for this year is People Helping People: Promote Acts of Kindness.
Typically, the contest draws hundreds of participants nationwide. The artwork is divided into categories. For each grade category for children and the elderly and special needs levels, local AHMAs select up to three winning posters, which can consist of photographs, websites, computer art, or other media. The AHMA winners are then sent to NAHMA for consideration in the national contest.
The grade categories for children are based on the grade the contestants have completed by June 2023: kindergarten-first grade, second-third grade, fourth-sixth grade, seventh-ninth grade, and 10th-12th grade. Only students are eligible for the grand prize.
Regardless of the entry category, each national winner of the NAHMA contest receives a $1,000 educational scholarship from the NAHMA Educational Foundation. All winners are also featured in the 2024 calendar.
Furthermore, participants in the annual art contests held by the local AHMAs are eligible to be selected as Regional AHMA Art Contest Honorable Mentions. Those chosen for this distinction are featured in a special NAHMA 2024 Drug-Free Kids calendar section and receive a $100 scholarship check.
The original grand prizewinning artwork will be sold in connection with the Educational Foundation’s fundraising gala on Oct. 25, with the proceeds supporting the foundation’s scholarship program.
Calendars go on sale beginning in September. The calendar cost is $5.50, which is a Department of Housing and Urban Development and U.S. Department of Agriculture allowable project expense.
The following lists this year’s national program winners, with their ages at the time of submission, grade completed in June 2023, contest category, the community where they live, the management company, and name of the AHMA that submitted their artwork:
- Haneen Ames, 16; 11th Grade; Winteringham Village Apartments, Toms River, N.J.; The Michaels Organization; JAHMA
- Graling Arnold, 55; Seniors & Residents with Special Needs; Bedford Hill Apartments, Pittsburgh, Pa.; McCormack Baron Management Inc.; PAHMA
- Uriel Fordjour, 17; 11th Grade; Stratton Hill Park, Worcester, Mass.; Beacon Communities LLC; NEAHMA
- Tiffany Gunawan, 11; Fifth Grade; Market Mill Apartments, Lowell, Mass.; Peabody Properties Inc.; NEAHMA
- Ravnoor K. Heyer, 9; Third Grade; Los Robles Apartments, Union City, Calif.; EAH Housing; AHMA-NCH
- Mark Holup, 52; Seniors & Residents with Special Needs; Emanuel Village, Worcester, Mass.; Beacon Communities LLC; NEAHMA
- Kaya Lopez, 13; Seventh Grade; Council Groves Apartments, Missoula, Mont.; Tamarack Property Management Co.; Rocky Mountain Heartland AHMA
- Celena Mendoza, 18; 12th Grade; Village at McArdle Apartments, Corpus Christi, Texas; Prospera Housing Community Services; SWAHMA
- Lily Morway, 15; Ninth Grade; Stratton Hill Park Apartments, Worcester, Mass.; Beacon Communities LLC; NEAHMA
- Jamison Nwaise, 6; Kindergarten; Lowell Belvidere Housing, Lowell, Mass.; Peabody Properties Inc.; NEAHMA
- Skylar Nwaise, 11; Fifth Grade; Lowell Belvidere Housing, Lowell, Mass.; Peabody Properties Inc.; NEAHMA
- Mia Valentine, 8; Second Grade; Westview Valley Apartments, Greensboro, N.C.; Westminster Company; SAHMA
- Ashton Malik Williams, 7; First Grade; North Hill Manor Apartments, Meridian, Miss.; The Michaels Organization; SAHMA
- Robert Allan Williams, 86; Seniors & Residents with Special Needs; Bedford Green Apartments, Bedford, Mass.; Peabody Properties Inc.; NEAHMA
- Lorri Becar, 55; Seniors & Residents with Special Needs; Winteringham Village Apartments, Toms River, N.J.; The Michaels Organization; JAHMA
- Anthony Keshishyan, 18; 12th Grade; The Gardens on Garfield, Glendale, Calif.; Thomas Safran & Associates; AHMA-PSW
- Nare Keshishyan, 12; Seventh Grade; The Gardens on Garfield, Glendale, Calif.; Thomas Safran & Associates; AHMA-PSW
- Lucy Lopez, 14; Eighth Grade; Council Groves Apartments, Missoula, Mont.; Tamarack Property Management Co.; Rocky Mountain Heartland AHMA