Clearwater, Florida


October 5th Marks Second Anniversary for Charity Coalition

Maurice Mickens addresses guests at the Second Annual Charity Coalition

On the 5th of October, the Church of Scientology in Clearwater hosted the Second Anniversary Banquet for the Charity Coalition in the Historic Fort Harrison with over 170 guests in attendance, representing over 70 organizations.

Speakers at the Second Annual Anniversary of the Charity Coalition (from left to right): Maurice Mickens, member of the Clearwater MLK Jr. Center Coalition; Tonya Lewis, founder of Children with a Vision, Inc; Delquanda Turner, Community Planning Manager of the Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County; and Dylan Pires, Community Affairs Director of the Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization.

The Community Affairs Director for the Church of Scientology in Clearwater, Dylan Pires, opened the event by acknowledging the participation of the non-profits in making the community better: “The initial list of participating non-profit organizations has grown from 38 to more than 200; that’s a 5x increase! In fact, just this evening, we are joined by representatives from over 100 organizations. You represent hope for Tampa Bay… You feed children, shelter the abused, provide mentoring, protect the environment and educate on the harmful effects of drugs. We are honored to have you here, thank you for your work to change the world.”

Three guest speakers from non-profit organizations also took to the stage.

Delquanda Turner has worked for the Juvenile Welfare Board since 2007. As the Community Planning Manager for the Juvenile Welfare Board, Ms. Turner is a passionate advocate for children, for building collaboration and for getting the job done. She told the guests that over $60 million in property taxes are invested in programs that the Juvenile Welfare Board oversees to assist under-privileged children and families.

Tonya Lewis spoke about her organization, Children with a Vision. She covered her mission of working with kids and helping them succeed through education, and how she has done her yearly “Back to School” giveaways in the Tampa Bay area for the last 17 years and how the Church of Scientology has supported her activities since the group’s inception.

Maurice Mickens, member of the Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Community Center Coalition, outlined the history of the MLK Jr. Center and how he got involved. He spoke about how the center was almost shut down and that the community, including the Church of Scientology, stepped in to save the center and renovate it. The Center reopened after four years, continuing its tradition as an icon for community events and programs for the Clearwater North Greenwood neighborhood.

“Throughout the ages, selfless dedication and service to others has been uniformly regarded as something very honorable. As Aristotle said, ‘What is the essence of life? To serve others and to do good.’ Our charities in the Tampa Bay area understand this and change lives every day,” said Mr. Pires.

Mr. Pires then closed out the event with the debut of a song and video for the Charity Coalition, which was received with enthusiastic applause and reviews.

About the Church of Scientology:

The Scientology religion was founded by humanitarian and philosopher, L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in the United States in 1954 and has expanded to more than 11,000 churches, missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 165 nations. Scientologists are optimistic about life and believe there is hope for a saner world and better civilization, and actively do all they can to help achieve this. The Church of Scientology regularly engages in many humanitarian programs, such as anti-drug campaigns, human rights campaigns and global education programs. To learn more, visit

The doors of The Fort Harrison, the Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization’s signature retreat, are open for non-profit organizations and charities to hold their own events.