Joyce Benning

Episode 481 with guest Aniyah Ayres

Fifteen year old Aniyah Ayres is the co-founder of Aniyah’s Mission which is an organization dedicated to empowering and encouraging children and adolescents to be a beacon into the future through their service. Aniyah’s Mission attempts to allow the vision of a child to blossom into philanthropic events designed to enhance the lives of others. Aniyah started this organization in 2014 with her mother, Angelia Gibson-Ayres to pay homage to her father’s legacy. Aniyah’s father, Pastor Antonio Ayres passed away when she was 2 years old.
Aniyah Ayres is a God fearing, entrepreneur, philanthropist, community activist, model, and published author. She has devoted countless hours, effort and personal commitment to the Philadelphia community through her service and devout reverence to the Lord.
Aniyah’s Mission organized the first ever, Children’s Die-In protest in support of Black Lives matter. The protest garnered reputable print and TV media coverage across the Tri-State. Aniyah’s vision successfully shut down City Ave on December 20, 2014 to prove that kids do have a voice and that their opinions and futures do matter.
Aniyah’s brain child, “Aniyah’s Mission” consistently lends support to undeserved communities in Philadelphia. Aniyah’s Mission donates book bags and school supplies yearly to homeless shelters and children in need. They donate funds to scholarship funds to promote education. They donate warm coats, clothes, hats and gloves to children and adults in need. This year alone, they have supplied over 300 coats to those who need a warm coat.
Aniyah’s Mission organizes an Annual Day of Peace to give children a day of fun. The children and adults alike are given free food, book bags, school supplies, free books, face painting, water ice and performances by local acts. It is a day of peace and love that has become a staple in the community. We are able to give out 3 Annual “Back to School” Scholarships which provides children with $200 for school uniforms/clothes, pair of sneakers, pair of shoes, a hair cut or hair style, book bag, schools supplies, and a Aniyah’s Mission T-shirt. .
Aniyah is the owner of Aniyah’s Water Ice Stand. She started this business in 2012 when she was 6 years old. Aniyah also launched her Lip Care line in 2018. It includes Lip Gloss, Lip Balm and Lip Scrubs. Aniyah’s Water Ice Stand and the Lip care donate 100% of its profit to Aniyah’s Mission. Aniyah also volunteers on Tuesday evenings to feed the community in the Mantua area.
Aniyah is the Youth Ambassador for the Sixers Youth Foundation and was instrumental in creating the Annual “Kids Can Youth Summit” sponsored by the Sixer’s Organization and Peco in honor of Black History Month. The summit is held every year and promotes awareness around getting children involved in the community to create change while fostering and learning about the rich African American heritage.
Aniyah became a published author in October, 2019 of “The Life Without”. Aniyah shares her encounter with death and grief through the loss of her father when she was a small child. She details the deep impact of her
loss and the struggles she faced as a result. The book is filled with practical grief management techniques such as coloring and journaling exercises. This book provides support to guide youth in managing painful grief- causing emotional experiences like sadness, anger and confusion. Aniyah’s transparent and honest disclosure of her loss allows other youth to connect with their grief and assist them in healing and safely moving through the challenges associated with losing a loved one.
In September, 2019, Aniyah’s Mission opened up their very first “KidsCan KidsCare” Room in Mastery Charter Elementary School-Mann Campus. This room is stocked with food such as mac & cheese cups, ramen noodles, oatmeal, muffins, granola bars & cereal; Toiletries such as soap, toothpaste & toothbrushes, deodorant, & sanitary pads and School Supplies. We have book bags and coats. This has been a huge success in ensuring no child goes hungry. This is a “no questions asked” room. If a child needs something, they just go in and take the item(s) they need without feeling embarrassed. We fully believe that allowing children to get the items they need without feeling embarrassed or ashamed will help boost self esteem, prevent bullying and allow them to be self sufficient and independent.
Aniyah is a spunky, vibrant and enthusiastic young girl. Her philosophy on life is kid simple: all children should be able to have a voice and be heard; eat everyday; have clothing and a warm place to sleep. Her motto is “Kids
Can!” She believes all kids can excel and achieve their dreams regardless of financial or geographical backgrounds if they put their minds to it, stays focused and is supported and encouraged. She has been taught to believe in God, respect her elders and be polite at all times. She loves to sing, act, dance, write monologues and play with her friends. Aniyah is an avid reader and journals everyday. Aniyah is the epitome of what a leader strives to be: poised, articulate, and motivating. She takes up for those without a voice especially kids being bullied. Aniyah has been blessed to be honored for her service. She is the Chaplin Award recipient of the Knights of Peter Claver for her work in the Philadelphia community. Aniyah was a Sixer’s Strong Kid Hero Awardee for her community service. Aniyah was the 2018 Black Gala Rising Star Awardee. Aniyah was given a Citation from the City of Philadelphia and Councilman Kenyatta Johnson, recognizing her community service and leadership. Aniyah was awarded the NBA Game Changer Award. She is the youngest to ever receive this honor. She is also the recipient of the 2018 Mayor’s Day of Service Youth Hero Award. She was awarded the Universoul Circus Leading Lady honor. Aniyah was also blessed to be the Health Partners Foundation 2018 Trailblazer Awardee. Aniyah was the youngest and 1 st WDAS 2019 “Aspiring Woman of Excellence. Aniyah is the Youth Ambassador for the 76ers Organization “Walk in my Shoes” program and Youth Ambassador for the “Girls Who Brunch Tour”. Aniyah is the 2020 Salute to Greatness A.N.G.E.L Award Recipient. Aniyah was recipient of the Prestigious Gloria Barron Award for Young Heroes in September 2020 that awarded her $10K for her efforts in the community. She has been featured on various Local radio stations and in print in the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News.
Aniyah is a young visionary who has already made an impact on the Philadelphia area but who is striving to become a voice of the voiceless children. Aniyah is the young sister of Aliyah Gibson and cousin of Kalani Harrington.

Joyce Benning
Joyce Benning

Hello to all! I am a born, bred & raised country girl! Passion is caring for animals with a natural approach along with inspiring women to live a Robust Lifestyle! Dogs & horses have always been a huge part of my life. They have taught me so much about living a full life! My red heeler dog Groucho, whom is my Best Buddy has taught me to never give up and live with Faith not Fear! Their love for you is by the kindness and love you have in your heart. Enjoy inspiring women to love themselves for who they are as each one is created unique. Motivate women to realize their true given talents and not compare themselves to others. Empower women to share their talents to make the world a better place for all!