Hasbro Community Action Hero Semi-Finalists 2015

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12 young people were selected as Hasbro Community Action Hero Semi-Finalists for their dedication to service and efforts to impact their local and global communities

 

  • Meet the 2015 Hasbro Community Action Hero Semi-Finalists:

 

Jasmy Mavilla | Lawrence, KS | 9

Jasmy was selected as a 2014 Healthy Lunchtime Challenge winner from the state of Kansas as part First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move campaign. While attending the kids' "State Dinner" at the White House, Mrs. Obama asked the children how they would pay it forward and make a difference in the world. At the time Jasmy didn't have an answer, but that question stuck with her. When she returned home, Jasmy figured out how to make a difference in her community and the world. She organized a book drive at her school and collected 150+ used and new books for the United Way of Douglas County.  She also held a bake sale to raise money for children in Guatemala, donated care bags to a local shelter and gives cooking demos to inspire other kids to eat healthy foods. Jasmy's motto is "Cook, Care, Share."

Kayla Abramowitz | North Palm Beach, FL | 13

With the help of family, friends and volunteers across the country, Kayla Cares 4 Kids has collected and donated more than 6,000 items, such as DVDs, game consoles, DVD players, video games, books and arts and crafts. Kayla Cares 4 Kids has delivered these items to 56 children's hospitals and Ronald McDonald Houses in 33 states. Kayla has helped tens of thousands of sick kids feel better because they are watching a movie, reading a book or playing a video game provided by her organization. Kayla Cares 4 Kids aims to deliver items to all 50 states and to be known as a resource for all the children's hospitals and Ronald McDonald Houses throughout the country. Kayla envisions a day when they can call Kayla Cares 4 Kids with their needs and she can readily provide those items to them. https://www.facebook.com/KaylaCares4Kids

Matthew Kaplan | Phoenix, AZ

Matthew wanted to address the issue of bullying by intervening before it becomes engrained in kids, changing their underlying attitudes and perceptions. So he created The Be ONE Project after his younger brother Josh was bullied at their middle school. Matthew knew the kids who were bullying his brother and believed that they did not understand the pain they were causing. Matthew created The Be ONE Project from the ground up and designed the program as a non-judgmental forum for kids to get to know one other, and to create empathy between students. Initially a program for the incoming 5th grade class at his own school, The Be ONE Project has grown into a national non-profit organization.  The program challenges students to focus on their similarities and celebrate their differences. Through a fun-filled day of interactive games, The Be ONE Project builds bridges, opens lines of communication, and instills a sense of trust and community. http://www.thebeoneproject.org

Brianna Jack | Baileyville, ME | 11

Brianna Jack has always loved reading. When she was just seven years old she started her very own story time at her local library. Four years later, in October of 2012, Brianna decided to start her own non-profit organization, Maine Books for Maine Kids.  Brianna visits schools and libraries to hold Story Times, and her organization has donated thousands of books.  This past year, she created Books for Kindergarteners and donated over 130 bags of books to students on their first day of school.  Brianna also supports bully awareness through books, holding the first ever Bully Awareness Walk in her town.  She raised over $3,000.  Brianna loves to read and takes great joy in sharing her passion with others. 

Christian Boujaoude | Tinton Falls, NJ | 16

Christian Boujaoude uses his social media campaign R U Aware to raise awareness about human trafficking. His Facebook page features a stark photograph of two hands bound in chains with the hashtag #StopHumanTrafficking written across them in red ink.  He hopes his campaign becomes an advocacy vehicle to help prevent human trafficking and connect those with a passion to take action.  Christian also undertook a special service project around the 2015 Super Bowl.  Using a grant that he received from YSA, Christian coordinated the labeling and shipping of 2,000 bars of soap to hotels in Arizona. Small stickers on the soap labels contained hotline number for victims, since major sporting events seem to attract an increase in human trafficking. Christian believes that young people are highly sensitive to issues of injustice and are motivated by empathy to make a difference. https://www.facebook.com/pages/R-U-Aware/279656515574913

Bradley Ferguson | Northfield, NJ | 14

In July 2014, Bradley devised a multi-year project called Post Crashers. The project is a community effort to support veterans by refurbishing their "Posts". Bradley brought together the members of the American Legion Post 295, Northfield citizens, businesses, and students from Northfield Community School to participate in several Post Crasher events to beautify the Post, a well-used community center. At each Post "Crash", Bradley, along with his adult team members, organized over 75 volunteers to complete various projects such as painting, replacing ceiling and floor tiles, renovating the kitchen and decorating. Additionally, the Crashers cleared the four-lot back yard of leaves, vines, weeds and other rubbish in order to make way for a patio/outdoor area for the community and a bountiful Victory Garden. The garden will supply much needed fresh vegetables for those in need in his community. Bradley and his community have found an innovative and creative way to honor veterans and their service.

Ive Jones | Cary, NC | 12

Ive's project inspiration came from watching her mother struggle as she read and heard the stories of children dying in her home country of Liberia during the Ebola outbreak. Ive decided to take action and turn a tragedy into a way to help, educate and change lives. Ive distributed over 300 teddy bears to 6 orphanages, helped an all-girls schools raise funds to continue their studies during the outbreak, and developed the website www.grantsawishliberia.com, to encourage her peers to celebrate their birthday by donating proceeds to children orphaned by Ebola. Since launching in December, 2014, over 67 kids and adults have donated over $4,700.00 to children in Liberia through Ive's website.

Riley Gantt | Sherman Oaks, CA | 14

Riley started Rainbow Pack when she was just 10 years old. Rainbow Pack is an organization that is dedicated to providing homework supplies to elementary school students in need. Over the last 4 years Riley has helped Rainbow Pack grow from a small group of family and friends who gave out 360 Rainbow Packs their first year to an event with over 100 volunteers that gave away over 2,000 Rainbow Packs this year. This was a back to school event that also included several local service organizations in attendance, educating families in the area about other services and support available to them. Riley was able to get support from a local school board representative, a local city council member and even a congressman. To date Rainbow Pack has given out over 5,500 Rainbow Packs to elementary school kids in need. As Rainbow Pack starts its 5th year, Riley has set a huge goal; 4,000 Rainbow Packs on the first day of school 2015 to Los Angeles Unified School District elementary school students in need, to help them do well in school. 

Sophie Kartzman | Big Flats, NY | 11

Sophie spearheaded an effort that brought her community together to create 13,000 holiday cards for the military. In 2013, Sophie and a friend made 100 cards for the American Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program. She enjoyed the process so much that she decided that the following year she would make 1,000!  Sophie enlisted her school to help with her goal, and through local media made the appeal for her entire community to get involved. She visited a local nursing home to create cards with residents, some who were veterans themselves. She and her mom set up an event at their local Barnes and Noble to make cards, and by the time she got there that day, people were out the door waiting for her. Sophie received cards from as far away as Florida, and from several counties in her home state of New York. By the end of the project, there were more than 13,000 cards provided to our military overseas and in the states, all because of the dedication of a sixth-grader! Sophie wants to extend her reach and is preparing a website to inspire other young people to give to their communities and to become leaders. 

Camille Paddock | Huntley, IL | 16

Camille runs an anti-bullying non- profit organization called Cam's Dare to be Different. She travels to schools and youth groups and speaks to kids one on one about bullying. She created Cam's Dare to be Different because she herself was a victim of bullying. Camille has Alopecia, an autoimmune disease that causes hair loss, and her bullies, once her friends, verbally and physically teased her about the disease. She decided to take her pain and experience and channel it into an online anti-bullying community through Facebook, where she could reach out to other kids dealing with bullying and give them a place to vent and find hope. Camille uses her personal story and empowers others. http://www.camsdtbd.org/

Corinne Hindes | Walnut Creek, CA | 15

Corinne's service project passion began at 11 years old. An avid skier, Corinne noticed an overflowing lost and found at her local ski resort. The image of all those winter coats, gloves, and hats stayed in her mind, especially when she observed homeless people in her community lacking basic clothing to wear during the winter months. Shortly after that moment Warm Winters was born, a national movement collecting thousands of warm jackets, gloves, hats and scarves from the unclaimed lost and found at ski resorts for distribution to the homeless. Warm Winters started with a single ski resort, but after recruiting her best friend Katrine, soon they were collecting warm clothing from 4 ski resorts. Warm Winters, now in the first year of a 5-year plan, is currently working with 17 ski resorts in 8 states with teen leaders at each resort.  

Ryan Traynor | Emerald Hills, CA | 16

Ryan created, marketed and conducted 4 free STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) classes for kids and 12 free Financial Literacy classes for teens.  The hands-on STEM classes used experiments and activities to engage youth while teaching STEM subjects and the use of library resources. Ryan uses themes, concepts, and experiments that help kids learn complex concepts and retain their knowledge. His Financial Literacy classes use videos, activities, and speakers to teach teens about money topics.  He applied for and won a $48,875 grant to fund the program and gained the cooperation of financial experts to help conduct the classes. He set up a website and on-line signup system, created marketing materials, and developed a pre/post assessment system. This teenager has made a huge difference to kids in his community, impacting 1,800 students to date. 
 
 

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