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Distinguished Finalist

Naisha Bellam

Clarksburg, Maryland

Naisha Bellam, 12, of Clarksburg, Md., a seventh-grader at Rocky Hill Middle School, raised $20,000 to establish 125 “mini-libraries” in rural and tribal schools in India, and another $7,000 to provide 700 backpacks filled with school supplies or hygiene products for children in need in Maryland. She was inspired to begin her work by the poverty she saw during biannual trips to India, and now is dedicated to promoting learning opportunities for kids around the world.