Arts * Fashion * Culture and Creative Counseling as an out-of-the-box approach to Youth and Family Empowerment for the Successful Navigation of 21st Century Life Challenges & Pitfalls   


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Jeanine Cook-Garard holds a PhD in Nursing from Molloy College.  She obtained her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science Degrees in Nursing from SUNY Stony Brook following an Associate of Science Degree in Nursing from Nassau Community College. For over twenty years she has been engaged in producing competent nurses through her role as a Professor of Nursing at Nassau Community College. Prior to her current tenure at Nassau Community College, Dr. Cook-Garard provided comprehensive nursing care at South Nassau Community Hospital and Franklin Hospital in Long Island. She is a member of the following professional organizations: the Nurse Practitioner Association of Long Island, the National league of Nurses, Sigma Theta Tau and the National Gerontologic Nursing Association.

Since 1985, Dr. Garard has also impacted the lives of others as a Mentor/Minister/Advisor in the Church of God in Christ and is often called upon as a Motivational Speaker. She is a devoted mother to four children; Caleb, a 3rd year student pursuing a degree in medicine at the Sophie Davis Medical School; Nailah, 
a first-year student at Macaulay’s Honors School, pursuing International Studies and Anthropology on a full scholarship, Joshua, 11th grade student at the Half Hollow Hills East High School and Japera who is in the 4th grade at Paumanok Elementary School in Dix Hills. She has the support of a devoted husband, parents and siblings.

James A. Lacy, LCSW
 Volunteer Program Director

James A. Lacy is a New York State Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has a long history as a psycho-therapist providing services to children, adolescents and families. In addition, he has served as Executive Director of the Economic Opportunity Commission of Nassau County (EOC), Clinical Director of Roosevelt Community Mental Health Center, and as Social Work Director and Internship coordinator for the Leadership Training Institute. He has provided field instruction for social work and psychology students from several colleges and universities in the New York Metropolitan area, and does consulting with service agencies and organizations with regards to program and staff development in addition to serving as the Mental Health Director of My Time Has Come™. He holds a Masters degree in Social Work from Adelphi University and a Bachelors of Science degree in Psychology from Virginia State University. 

Mr. Lacy, for many years, chaired the Nassau County HIV Commission. 
He also for many years served as President of the Nassau/Suffolk Chapter of the National Association of Black Social Workers, and as Board Chair for the Uniondale Early Childhood Center. Prior to his human services career, he served in the United States Army as a Medical Administrative Officer where he attained the rank of 1st Lieutenant and was awarded the Army Commendation Medal.
Mr. James Lacy is an accomplished singer, songwriter and acoustical guitarist, who also performs songs intended to inspire young people.

Who We Are

Founder/CEO: Madona Cole-Lacy, M.A. Ed.  Visual Artist * Educator * Motivator * Entrepreneur

Madona Cole-Lacy's life journey takes the form of a holistic service to others through a concept she refers to as Connecting the Dots of Creativity. Mrs. Cole-Lacy connects her dots of creativity by taking ART and CREATIVITY beyond the confines of the studio to impact the lives of others in a number of positive ways that provide social and emotional visual arts-based solutions and enrichment as a Textile Artist, Social Entrepreneur and registered Nassau and Eastern Suffolk BOCES Teaching Artist & Cultural Partner(Arts-in-Education Consultant).
 "Connecting the dots of Creativity, for me, involves taking a look at all that I am passionate about, and devising a way to bring them together to accurately represent the way I use resources available to me to serve others. This makes for an effective sense of purpose for me!"  

Mrs. Cole-Lacy studied art and design in both England, and the U.S., obtained a Master of Arts in Education degree from Brooklyn College and an entrepreneurial certificate from Hofstra University. She has served as the New York State representative for the Surface Design Association, and is a member of the United Federation of Teachers, Kappa Delta Pi (Educational Honors Society) and several art organizations, including Americans for the Arts, the Art League of Long Island and the Long Island Arts Alliance where she serves as an Advisory Board member. 



                                                                               Copyright 2012      Your Time For Creative Empowerment, Inc.        All Rights Reserved     

                                                                                                                                          Design: Madona Cole-Lacy Long Island, New York 

 [email protected]
Jeanine Cook-Garard, PhD, RN, NP

Ms. Geraldine Gooding is a STEM professional whose career spans over 12 years in various areas - from systems engineering, urban planning to education. She holds Masters degrees in Technological Systems Management, Systems Engineering, and City & Regional Planning and a Bachelors of Science in Applied Mathematics and Statistics. Throughout her career, Ms. Gooding has pursued her passion for youth empowerment through mentoring or volunteering by bringing engineering principles to life for young people with fun and interactive hands-on lessons. She credits her graduate student work experience with the Director of Multicultural Programs in the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Engineering and Applied Science as a source of inspiration to her as she operated in the capacity of mentor and advisor to undergraduate students.

Over the years, Ms. Gooding has worked as a Quality Engineer at General Electric, Project Manager and Program Manager at various engineering companies. One of her passions is inspiring, empowering, and engaging youth in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) education from Pre-K to college nationally and internationally. After years of working in project and program management, Ms. Gooding followed her passion and began sharing her love of math and engineering, and empowerment more fervently with young people through teaching and outreach programs with the National Society of Black Engineers, as the Pre-College Initiative Chairperson and as the Sharing Our Success Chair Person for Girls in Technology.  

We provide creative tools that address the unique challenges and pitfalls of the 21st Century that our youth, parents and communities must successfully navigate 

Your Time For Creative Empowerment Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non profit corporation that was founded to respond to a need for creatively effective approaches aimed at improving interpersonal relationships with emphasis on avoiding pitfalls that are unique to life in the 21st Century for the youth, parents and community members of the Long Island area. 

We do this through the integration of the arts, fashion, culture and solid counseling techniques. We engage resource persons from various walks of life to assist our students and parents in an out of-the-box approach to personal development and problem solving for navigating challenges and pitfalls that are unique to present day society.

The Self-Empowerment Workshop for High School students is offered at no cost to the parents and is in place to address a need expressed by college-bound graduates and their parents for heightened awareness, understanding and the tools to navigate the many challenges which can interfere with college success. Among the challenges this workshop covers are: issues regarding separation from home, time management, money management, values, peer relationships, internet safety, study habits, alcohol, drugs and sex. 

With the help of Resource Persons from various professional backgrounds who are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of our youth on Long Island, our goal is to: reduce the stresses of college life for students, set the stage for academic excellence and to decrease the potential for college failure and/or drop-out. 

This self-empowering workshop also places 8th and 10th grade students in the Get Set Mindset of high school success with relevant tools that are age and grade appropriate.  Students get to hold discussions of high school and college life issues as well as self-improvement and personal development concepts. These concepts will be reinforced through creative artistic expressions the participants bring to the table. Breakfast and lunch is always served.
Click for program listing 

YTFCE is a nonprofit organization that is registered in the state of New York as an organization to help the community, and is supported by donations from foundations, institutions, individuals and local businesses to provide these services and other programs.

Board of Directors

Madona Cole-Lacy, M.A.Ed​.,Visual Artist, Educator, 
Social Entrepreneur, Life's Lesson Consultant, Motivational Presenter      

Jeanine Cooke-Garard, PhD, RN, GNP, Professor - Member

   Geraldine Gooding, MS, MCP, STEM Consultant -
 Member/Youth Peer Leadership Council Director

Yearly Free Self-Empowering Workshop for College-Bound Students & their parents

Peer Leaders

Marie Saint-Cyr    *   Nailah Garard

Geraldine Gooding, MS,MCP
 STEM Consultant Coach