Youth Volunteers Recognized for Impactful Service

The following message is from Jim Starr, vice president, Volunteer Management:

Twenty young volunteers nominated by Red Cross chapters have received Prudential Spirit of Community Awards. Whether organizing a school program that teaches CPR to 1,000 students, raising more than $11,000 for the Red Cross with a Spring Fling, or organizing blood drives in all the schools in the area, each of these volunteers has made their community a better place in which to live.

Prudential’s nationwide recognition program, the largest in the U.S. based solely on volunteer service, honors high school and middle level school students. Awards are based on the impact of a student’s service activity, and their initiative, personal growth and dedication to helping others.

State Honorees include Emma Astrike-Davis (N.C.), Matthew Draeger (Tex.), Adam Griffis (Wash.) and Estefania Martinez (Colo.). They are part of the group of 102 students—one high school and one middle level student from each state and the District of Columbia—who will travel to Washington, D.C. this May for an opportunity to become one of ten National Honorees. In addition to the all-expense-paid trip to the nation’s capital, each State Honoree won $1,000 and a silver medallion.

Another 16 Red Cross youth were among 234 students nationwide awarded bronze medallions as Distinguished Finalists (state runner-ups). Sketches of the remarkable accomplishments of each State Honoree and Distinguished Finalist demonstrate their talents, whether their activity focused on the Red Cross mission or another community need.

This year 30 Red Cross chapters made nominations, pitting our best against a pool of more than 28,000. That two-thirds of our nominees received state runner-up or higher awards underscores the excellence and dedication of youth volunteers who associate themselves with the Red Cross. It also underscores the excellence and dedication of Red Cross staff who are their mentors. I want to thank staff from the nominating chapters who took the time to encourage youth volunteers in this important way.

Join me in extending congratulations and thanks to these young volunteers. Also, join me in wishing the best to Estefania, Adam, Matthew and Emma as they compete for national honors in May.

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