Kyler Stockstill, 14, of Wichita, Kan., an eighth-grader at Hadley Middle School, serves the homeless and hungry in his community and elsewhere, working side by side with his parents and members of his church. Kyler said his parents, both of whom are teachers, have inspired him to help others. “I am adopted and my parents are white and I am Hispanic,” he said. “This is something I struggle with sometimes as I feel different from my family. When I can serve other people, it makes me realize how blessed I am that I was adopted into this family.”
After hearing his pastor talk about a mission trip to build a house in Mexico for a family in need, Kyler knew he wanted to be a part of it. With his father and others, Kyler spent three days framing the dwelling, mixing stucco, and doing other construction tasks. “The house that the family lived in before was made of pallets and cardboard,” he said. “We were able to create a safe house for them and I was impressed with their sincere appreciation.” Kyler also volunteered last summer with his mother at a local food bank, where he helped unload trucks filled with food and moved new cans onto shelves, serving as many as 100 families a day. With his church youth group, he also periodically serves meals at a soup kitchen and last year during spring break went on a mission trip with members of his church to serve the homeless in Kansas City.