kids making a differenct. 2017 kick-off-kid

meet Hailey

Hailey turned the sadness she felt about her grandmother’s cancer diagnosis into something positive. She organized her own walk to raise money for cancer research. With little help, she delivered flyers, plotted the 2-mile route, and set up a water station at the end of her driveway for participants. The ambitious 9-year-old raised $500, all of which was donated to the American Lung Association for cancer research!

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"Hailey decided to put her energy to good use. She worked through her own sadness...encouraging neighborhood camaraderie and spirit while fighting for her cause."


Deanna Roecker,
Physician Assistant,
All About Skin, SC

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meet Isabelle

Isabelle gave herself a lofty goal: to collect 500 pairs of shoes for people in need. She wrote 500 letters to neighbors and friends spoke at her church to solicit for the cause. In just nine weeks, she exceeded her goal and the shoes were sent with YouCan Missions, Inc., for children in Belize. The 11-year-old may be small, Isabelle has a huge heart—and a lot of soles!

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"As a result of Isabelle’s project, hundreds of kids will be able to go to school... and attend on a regular basis, because they have a pair of shoes."


Julie Boelter
Founder & Director,
YouCan Missions, Inc.

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"I learned that doing a few simple things can make a difference...I learned that helping people feels good."


Isabelle,
Organizer,
Shoe Drive for kids in Belize

meet Isabelle

Isabelle gave herself a lofty goal: to collect 500 pairs of shoes for people in need. She wrote 500 letters to neighbors and friends spoke at her church to solicit for the cause. In just nine weeks, she exceeded her goal and the shoes were sent with YouCan Missions, Inc., for children in Belize. The 11-year-old may be small, Isabelle has a huge heart—and a lot of soles!

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"As a result of Isabelle’s project, hundreds of kids will be able to go to school... and attend on a regular basis, because they have a pair of shoes."


Julie Boelter
Founder & Director,
YouCan Missions, Inc.

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"I learned that doing a few simple things can make a difference...I learned that helping people feels good."


Isabelle,
Organizer,
Shoe Drive for kids in Belize

meet Hana

After seeing her great grandmother and one of her friends go through cancer treatments, Hanna saw an opportunity to help. The 12-year-old makes and delivers treatment baskets for cancer patients. She fills the packages with lip balms, slippers, books and other things to make patients’ time in the hospital more comfortable. Even more importantly, Hana’s kindness is a reminder to people going though difficult times that they are never alone.

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"I have learned that no matter how big or little the project is, it will make a difference in somebody’s life."


Hana
Creates treatment baskets
for cancer patients

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meet Jaylee

Jaylee is the youngest of four friends who started Backpack Buddies to help children entering the foster system. The group gives backpacks of personal items and toys to kids who often leave their homes with nothing. The 9-year-old plans collection drives, fundraisers, and solicits donations from area business. Each year, the group helps about 80 kids in their community; now that’s using the buddy system!

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"Starting an organization at such a young age can be overwhelming but Jaylee planned fundraisers and collection drives with confidence."


Jill Cavanaugh
Teacher, MPSD/Monroe Elementary

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"Jaylee has a heart for serving those in the community. Her heart is generous and her welcome always genuine."


Nicole Herda,
Backpack Buddies parental support

meet Jaylee

Jaylee is the youngest of four friends who started Backpack Buddies to help children entering the foster system. The group gives backpacks of personal items and toys to kids who often leave their homes with nothing. The 9-year-old plans collection drives, fundraisers, and solicits donations from area business. Each year, the group helps about 80 kids in their community; now that’s using the buddy system!

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"Starting an organization at such a young age can be overwhelming but Jaylee planned fundraisers and collection drives with confidence."


Jill Cavanaugh
Teacher, MPSD/Monroe Elementary

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"Jaylee has a heart for serving those in the community. Her heart is generous and her welcome always genuine."


Nicole Herda,
Backpack Buddies parental support

meet Octavia

Octavia had a plan for summer vacation: she wanted help cats and learn to sew. Combining the two ambitions, she started Kinyoda Cats, a name she made up for her nonprofit venture. With her mom’s help, the 6-year-old designs and sews cat toys to give to the local cat sanctuary. She also sells the toys at pop-up markets, giving all proceeds to the rescue organization. In her first month, she raised nearly $200. Being creative and helpful? Now that’s purr-fect.

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"She originated the idea, assisted in the pattern design... assisted in sewing, stuffing and adding catnip to each toy. She then organized orders to ship and delivered those that were local."


Elizabeth Feldhausen
Owner, Safe Haven Pet Sanctuary

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"It makes me happy to know I am helping cats that need extra love."


Octavia
Founder, Kinyoda Cats

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meet Adel

At just 9-months-old, Adel had her first allergic reaction; her parents made it to the hospital with only seconds to spare. The now 10-year old has grown up knowing the importance of keeping people safe from life-threatening reactions. She started Team Delly, a group dedicated to raising money for food allergy education and research. Adel hosts fundraisers, volunteers at and participates in food allergy awareness walks. In just five years, she’s raised over $20,000!

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"Adel has been an amazing volunteer and fundraiser for the Food Allergy Heroes Walk."


Renee Halpin
Midwest Walk Manager,
FARE Food Allergy Heroes Walk

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"I have learned that most people want to help and learn how to be safe."


Adel
Founder, Team Delly

meet Adel

At just 9-months-old, Adel had her first allergic reaction; her parents made it to the hospital with only seconds to spare. The now 10-year old has grown up knowing the importance of keeping people safe from life-threatening reactions. She started Team Delly, a group dedicated to raising money for food allergy education and research. Adel hosts fundraisers, volunteers at and participates in food allergy awareness walks. In just five years, she’s raised over $20,000!

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"Adel has been an amazing volunteer and fundraiser for the Food Allergy Heroes Walk."


Renee Halpin
Midwest Walk Manager,
FARE Food Allergy Heroes Walk

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"I have learned that most people want to help and learn how to be safe."


Adel
Founder, Team Delly

meet Callahan

Inspired by his older sister who raises money for charity, Callahan wanted in on the game of helping others. The 10-year-old decided to host a charity touch football tournament right in his backyard. He planned, marketed, organized concessions, prepared the field, and refereed a 44-student competition. Parents and family turned out for support and Callahan raised $1,000, all of which was donated. “I like football and I get to help others,” Callahan reported. Now that’s a win for everyone.

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"Every player from the winning team gets to pick a charity to donate the money to."


Callahan
Organizer, Flag Football
Fundraiser for Charity

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"He has always been a student I could count on and trust to be a leader for his class and school"


Dan Milliren, Teacher,
North Greenville Elementary School

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meet Myah & Hayden

Since 2016, two friends have been wrapping up kindness and sending soft surprises. Myah and Hayden founded Bundles of Hope to remind people who are sick or experiencing loss that they are not alone. “We wanted to do something good,” now 12-year old Myah said. The pair sends a blanket, stuffed animal and a personalized note of hope to kids and adults when they need it most.

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"They positively touched the lives and hearts of so many people."


Kelly Votava, Teacher,
Bayshore Community Academy

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"We personalize each note with inspiration for the person based on their age and situation."


-Hayden
Co-founder, Bundles of Hope

meet Myah & Hayden

Since 2016, two friends have been wrapping up kindness and sending soft surprises. Myah and Hayden founded Bundles of Hope to remind people who are sick or experiencing loss that they are not alone. “We wanted to do something good,” now 12-year old Myah said. The pair sends a blanket, stuffed animal and a personalized note of hope to kids and adults when they need it most.

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"They positively touched the lives and hearts of so many people."


Kelly Votava, Teacher,
Bayshore Community Academy

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"We personalize each note with inspiration for the person based on their age and situation."


-Hayden
Co-founder, Bundles of Hope

meet Annie

After learning a family friend was taking a mission trip to give eye exams to those in need, it was clear to Annie that she should collect glasses to send with him. "I wanted to help everyone there see because I wear glasses and now I can see," she said. Annie designs posters to promote her glasses drives, makes announcements at school, distributes collection boxes at businesses and gives the frames to the Lions Foundation which helps people worldwide. So far, she has collected 577 pairs. "It is important for everyone to help other people," the 8-year-old stated. "And to be generous and kind to everyone. I think that will make the world a better place."

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"Everyone that needs glasses should be able to have them."


-Annie
Collects glasses for those in need

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"Annie learned that many children and adults need glasses but cannot afford them."


Diane Luft, Principal,
Alliance Charter Elementary School