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State Honoree

Bridget White

Pennsylvania

Bridget White, 13, of Blooming Glen, Pa., a seventh-grader at Pennridge Central Middle School in Perkasie, organized a teen volunteer group to shovel snow, rake leaves, and perform other chores for senior citizens. “I was inspired to start my youth group because of the many senior citizens outdoors doing hard work,” Bridget said. “No one was even trying to help.” Bridget walked from door to door in her neighborhood, looking both for youth volunteers and seniors who needed assistance. After explaining her idea, she gave each senior a “hotline” phone number and asked him or her to call whenever they needed help. She also posted fliers in the post office. When requests were received, they were directed to the nearest youth volunteer, and “if no one was available to go, I would,” she said. “A few times my family would take on several extra jobs because I couldn’t find volunteers willing or available to do them, but I never turned down any requests for help.” Aside from homemade cookies or a soda, Bridget’s volunteers did all their work for free. “We touched people,” she said. “We made people’s lives easier.”