Friday, March 9, 2007

Youth Wins the Gold!

A Presidential honor is top of the list of accomplishments for Vakeyia, a sponsored child through Children International, a Kansas City-based nonprofit child sponsorship organization.

Vakeyia, an 18-year-old high school senior, has been awarded the President's Volunteer Service Award for her community service work in Little Rock, Arkansas. The prestigious award was created as a way to thank and honor Americans who, by their demonstrated commitment and example, inspire others to engage in volunteer service.

Vakeyia sees her service to others as a way to a better life. " I have learned that the more you help people, the better you feel inside. 'Be the change you wish for the world,' is the quote that best describes what I have learned. I will take the knowledge that I have acquired and try to change the world for the best."

Some of Vakeyia's other accomplishments include:

  • Class of 2007 Valedictorian
  • President of her agency's Youth Council
  • Delegate representing her agency at Children International's 2006 International Youth Conference
  • 4-year scholarship to Hendrix College in Arkansas.

But the odds were not always on Vakeyia's side, as she is one of six children raised by her single father. Vakeyia could have fallen victim to violence and drug activity in her neighborhood, but with her father's steadfast support and the help of after-school mentoring through Children International, Vakeyia has kept her focus on one day working in the field of forensics.

James R. Cook, president and CEO of Children International, says, "We are so proud of Vakeyia's accomplishments. She is proof that sponsorship makes a real impact in the life of a disadvantaged child. Knowing Vakeyia, she will be successful in any career she chooses."

Posted on behalf of Dolores Kitchin from Children International in Kansas City, MO.

1 comment:

joey said...

I am very proud of Vakeyia. Her accomplishment is a manifestation that Children International does not only help meet the basic needs of sponsored kids. It also empowers teens to become tomorrow's leaders. I am sure there are thousands of sponsored teenagers who are volunteering in community efforts because the sponsorship program motivated them to volunteer and become positive agents of change.