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What to Know

  • Plasencia spent over a decade in sales before joining the group full time in 2004, promoting activities that included Domino Night.

South Florida is mourning the loss of a woman who spent decades working to improve to the lives of children across the area while working with the nonprofit group Amigos for Kids.

Rosa Maria Plasencia, who served on the board of directors and as executive director of the group dedicated to preventing child neglect and abuse for over a decade before becoming President and CEO of the organization in 2012, passed away suddenly at the age of 59.

Her death was confirmed by several Miami-Dade leaders, including schools superintendent Alberto Carvalho in a tweet saying “Heaven today gaining an angel.”

Plasencia spent over a decade in sales before joining the group full time in 2004, promoting activities that included the annual Domino Night fundraiser.

No cause of death has been released and funeral arrangements have not been announced.



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Donate. Volunteer. Get involved. Together, we can put an end to child abuse once and for all.

Amigos For Kids was founded in 1991 to aid South Florida’s most valuable resource, its children.


The organization aims to increase awareness of its mission of strengthening families and educating communities in the prevention of child abuse and neglect.


Amigos For Kids actualizes its purpose every day via key program components, including Education, Awareness, and Advocacy. The Education framework includes an After-School Program and its evidenced-based Nurturing Parents Program.


The After-School Program at José Martí Park serves children ages 6 – 11 daily. The educational parenting workshops serve countless families throughout the region.


Since its inception, Amigos For Kids has organized one of the city’s largest and most meaningful holiday toy drives.


The effort, reaching thousands of children over the years, makes their specific holiday wishes come true.  To fulfill its mission, Amigos For Kids relies on the support of generous individuals, corporate partners and volunteers.



Amigos for Kids

The Blue Ribbon Campaign began in 1989 when Bonnie Finney of Virginia lost her three-year-old grandson, Michael Dickenson, at the hands of her daughter’s abusive boyfriend. Bonnie tied a blue ribbon to her car to symbolize the blue of her grandson’s bruises.

Each year during the month of April volunteers and community partners promote child abuse prevention. Help us create awareness and wear your “There’s NO excuse for child abuse!®” blue ribbon pin all year round.

Donate Now


For 30 years, we’ve been helping children overcome child abuse. We are only just beginning, and with your help, we can fight on for many years to come.

A Message From Leadership


Dear Amigos –

Amigos For Kids was created in 1991 by a small group of committed child advocates with a simple purpose: to raise awareness of child abuse prevention and assist children and families in need. Today, 30 years later, I am humbled that the organization is respected as one of the leading non-profits born and bred in South Florida.

Our group responds — each and every day — to the diverse needs of abused children and underprivileged families through multiple programs, including our abuse prevention message, There’s NO Excuse For Child Abuse!®.

Our work continues to be recognized regionally and nationally. Most recently, Amigos For Kids was honored by The Children’s Trust, one of our primary funders, as its Program of the Year.

We could not have made it this far without the tireless work of so many, especially our Board, staff, and volunteers, as well as the generosity of our loyal corporate partners, and the commitment of each of our supporters and funders. We thank you all.

If you would like to become an Amigo by donating your time or treasure, please call 305-279-1155.

On behalf of the children and families we are privileged to serve, thank you for supporting the important mission of Amigos For Kids.

Jorge A. Plasencia
Co-Founder & Chairman Emeritus

Executive Members

  • Chair

    Maggie Fresen-Zulueta

    Vice President

    Academica Corporation

  • Vice Chair

    Yosbel A. Ibarra, Esq.

    Co-Managing Shareholder

    Greenberg Traurig, P.A.

  • Treasurer

    Alex Sueiro, CPA



  • Secretary

    Victoria Madani, Esq.


    Shutts & Bowen LLP

  • Immediate Past Chair

    Nicole Valls

    VP of Operations

    Valls Group

  • Co-Founder & Chairman Emeritus

    Jorge A. Plasencia

    Co-Founder, Chairman & CEO

    Republica Havas

  • Executive Director

    Karina Pavone

    Amigos For Kids

  • Legal Counsel (ex-officio)

    Eddie Diaz, Esq.


    Holland & Knight

Board Members

  • Carol Cabezas


    Azamara Club Cruises

  • Lissette M. Calderón

    Chief Executive Officer

    Neology Development Group

  • Pedro A Capó

    Chief Operating Officer

    El Dorado Furniture

  • Cristy Clavijo-Kish

    Chief Development Officer

    Co-Founder & Partner
    Hispanicize Media Group

  • Ingrid Hoffmann

    TV Celebrity Chef

  • Miguel Larrea

    Senior Account Executive

    Clear Channel Outdoor

  • Gustavo J. Membiela, Esq.


    Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP

  • Marcel Monnar, Ed.S.


    One on One Learning

  • Jose Victor Morales

    Senior Vice President


  • Eliot Pedrosa


    Jones Day

  • Robert Penafiel


    Pension Services, Inc. (“PSI”), and Plan Documents, Inc. (“PDI”)

  • Michael Plasencia

    Group Director, New Product Strategy

    Ryder System, Inc.

  • Francisco Ponce

    Vice President

    NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises

  • Pamela Silva

    News Anchor

    Univision Network

  • Jose Triana

    Major Accounts Manager


  • Christie Velasco

    Assistant Vice President and Assistant to the President & CEO

    Interamerican Bank

Honorary Members

  • Adrienne Arsht

    Chairman Emerita


  • Roxana Fernandez



  • Jackie Nespral

    News Anchor

    NBC Miami

Corporate Partners

Institutional Partners

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  3. 40k general
  4. Okc pet classifieds
  5. Walking dead ep 10

Amigos For Kids

Amigos Together For Kids (DBA: Amigos For Kids) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation founded in 1991 dedicated to preventing child abuse and neglect by valuing children, strengthening families and educating communities. The group was founded by Jorge A. Plasencia.[2][3] Amigos For Kids has created a model after-school program at Jose Marti Park in Miami for over 100 underprivileged children in a public and private partnership with the City of Miami. The organization creates awareness for its cause through a variety of public service campaigns and high-profile fundraising events including the successful Celebrity Domino Night. It also runs an annual toy drive to collect Christmas gifts for disadvantaged children.[4]

Amigos For Kids has trademarked the term "There's No Excuse for Child Abuse!" in English, Spanish and Creole. The organization, an affiliate of the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), is governed by a volunteer board of directors whose current chair is Nicole Valls. Rosa Maria Plasencia is the current President and CEO.

Throughout its over 25-year history, Amigos has created numerous programs for these children in the inner-city across South Florida.

In 2017, Amigos collaborated with Republica on Broken Crayons. The groundbreaking art exhibit transformed children’s drawings into an immersive experience, showing patrons the raw reality of child abuse. The PSA campaign demonstrated how abused children’s cries for help can easily be overlooked.

In 2010, Amigos took its awareness message nationally, airing public-service announcements targeting US Hispanics on the prevention of child abuse and neglect. As of 2010, Amigos For Kids had received four stars for three consecutive years from, an honor that only 12% of nonprofits nationally have garnered. Amigos For Kids also hosts workshops and parenting programs across the Miami-area.[5]

Notable artists and people have supported or appeared at Amigos For Kids such as Ingrid Hoffmann,[6]Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Juan Soler,[7]Pitbull,[8]Paquito D'Rivera, Juan Pablo Torres, Dave Valentin, Giovanni Hidalgo, Hilton Ruiz, Tito Puente[9]Marc Anthony.[10] and Gloria Estefan.[11] In August 2013, U. S. Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz met with Miami organization leaders including Amigo For Kids, to discuss "current and future sequestration of Hispanic and Latino families in South Florida".[12] In June 2013, In November 2013, Amigos For Kids collaborated with Miami Heat player Ray Allen to distribute 250 Thanksgiving meals.[13] In March 2015, actor Gabriel Coronel raided $60,000 for Amigos For Kids after participating in a Top Chef competition.[14] In April 2015, Amigos For Kids was one of several organizations to receive over $1 million in donations from Verizon.[15] In June 2015, the group hosted its annual Celebrity Domino Night at Jungle Island which was sponsored by Bacardi and Lincoln Motor Company and featured celebrities including Elizabeth Gutiérrez, Khotan Fernández, María Elena Salinas, Sonya Smith and Pamela Silva Conde.[16]


In 2010, Amigos For Kids raised $1,144,922. Program expenses for the year were $1,218,018 with 85% of the expenses going directly towards meeting the needs of the children which the organization serves. ~7% of the expenses were administrative expenses while 8% went towards fundraising. The organization ended the year with $205,000 in assets.[17]


  1. ^"Amigos For Kids Puts Focus On Child Abuse". NBC News. April 24, 2014. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  2. ^Sam Verdeja, Guillermo Martinez (2012). Cubans, an Epic Journey: The Struggle of Exiles for Truth and Freedom. Reddy Press. ISBN . Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  3. ^Congress (2004). Congressional Record, V. 150, PT. 9, June 2, 2004 to June 16, 2004. p. 12173. ISBN . Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  4. ^Mayo, Christina (December 30, 2014). "Friends and Neighbors: UM architecture students present new vision for Hialeah industrial site". Miami Herald. Retrieved January 2, 2015.
  5. ^Cardona, Alexi C. (November 2, 2014). "Workshops teach parental options, understanding". Miami Herald. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  6. ^"'Amigos For Kids' Holds Annual Back-To-School Drive". CBS News. July 28, 2015. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  7. ^"Juan Soler se une a la noche de dominó de Amigos For Kids". La Prensa (in Spanish). June 11, 2013. Retrieved August 9, 2015.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^"Backbeat". Billboard. Vol. 119 no. 2. January 13, 2007. p. 61. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
  9. ^D'Rivera (2008). My Sax Life: A Memoir. Northwestern University Press. p. 212. ISBN . Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  10. ^"Giving Back". Billboard. April 3, 2010. p. 44. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  11. ^"Gloria Estefan". Billboard. Vol. 123 no. 11. April 2011. p. 42. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  12. ^"Wasserman Schulrz Discusses Impact of Sequester on Hispanic families". CBS News. August 21, 2015. Retrieved January 2, 2015.
  13. ^"Heat Player Handd Out Thanskgivinf Meals to South Florida families". CBS News. November 24, 2013. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  14. ^"Gabriel Coronel Wins Telemundo's Top Chef Estrellas". Broadway World. March 9, 2015. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  15. ^Mann Jr., Joseph A. (April 10, 2015). "Verizon Wireless is investing to meet high demand". Miami Herald. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  16. ^"The Party of the Summer-Miami Celebrity Domino Night". The Miamian. June 30, 2015. Archived from the original on September 7, 2015. Retrieved August 9, 2015.
  17. ^

External links[edit]

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Amigos for Kids held the Rosa Maria Plasencia Way Dedication Ceremony on Calle Ocho

On April 9, 2021, District 5 Commissioner Eileen Higgins, County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, Commissioner Rebecca Sosa, City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, Jorge Plasencia of Republica Havas, William Talbert of the GMCVB, and Nicole Valls of Versailles to name a few joined Amigos for Kids in the ceremony that dedicated SW 8th Street from 12th to 14th avenue to the beloved Rosa Maria Plasencia. The street was named Rosa Maria Plasencia Way as a commemoration of the incredible work she has done for the community. 

The event took place at 9:45 am at Domino Park Plaza, 801 SW 15th Avenue, Miami, FL. It was an event that brought the community together to remember the legacy of a remarkable woman.

Rosa Maria Plasencia was the President and CEO of Amigos for Kids, a non-profit organization that works to end child abuse and neglect in Miami-Dade County.  Under Rosa Maria’s leadership, Amigos for Kids reached over 2,500 students through their child abuse awareness education program. This great accomplishment led to earning the Children’s Trust recognition as the program of the year. 

“I am truly honored to dedicate a special place in the heart of Little Havana to the memory of Rosa, a leader and community champion who worked day and night to improve the lives of children across District 5 and the County,” said Commissioner Higgins. “Rosa Maria Plasencia Way will serve as a beautiful tribute to her life and will be a reminder of her impactful work with Amigos for Kids, helping and protecting the most vulnerable of children.”

Plasencia dedicated her life to protect the lives of children and improve the lives of all Miami-Dade residents. She served as the Chair of the Eleventh Circuit Task Force for the State of Florida Child Abuse Prevention and Permanency Plan and was inducted into the Miami-Dade College Hall of Fame in 2017.

In October 2018, Rosa Maria Plasencia passed away unexpectedly at the young age of 59. The community lost a tremendous leader and fighter for justice. Her legacy lives on with the many lives she touched, and this street which will be an inspiration to the entire community. 

Find out more about Amigos for Kids, keep up with Commissioner Eileen Higgins, and regularly visit the Commission’s website. 

TagsMayor Francis Suarez


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