The Tabernacle Sun
Volunteering with two different charities, finishing her senior year strong, and preparing to attend Johns Hopkins University in the fall are all part of just another day in the life of Seneca High School senior Alexandra Potts. Because of her volunteer work, Potts was recently presented with the Seneca Volunteer Service Award.
“It is such an honor to receive the award,” Potts said. “It was something I wanted to achieve, and I’m excited to have done it.”
As a freshman, Potts was looking to get involved in different clubs within Seneca. The community service club seemed to be a perfect fit, as it would give her the opportunity to work with kids, which is something she is passionate about. Through the club, Potts discovered the Florida-based Give Kids the World foundation and was blown away by the work they were doing.
Give Kids the World is a non-profit organization based in Kissimmee, Fla., that provides trips for kids with life-threatening illnesses. Accommodations at the Give Kids the World village, meals, as well as admission tickets to Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and other attractions are given to families for the week. To date, GKTW has brought more than 120,000 children and their families to the resort for their dream vacation.
“How many people this organization has touched, how many people have been helped, is incredible, and I wanted to be a part of that,” Potts said.
As a sophomore and again this year, Potts traveled to Florida for four days and had the opportunity to meet some of the children and their families.
“When you see the kids smile or their face light up, it just makes your entire day,” Potts said.
In addition to her work with GKTW, Potts has been volunteering with the Voorhees Pediatric Facility for the last year. VPF, established in 1982, is a nationally recognized specialty care center for medically at-risk children.
“Since Alexa started here in May of 2012, I’ve always been impressed with her maturity and her patience,” volunteer manager Rose Lynch said. “So many times I’ve seen her. She’s kneeling on the ground to be on the same level as the kids, singing, playing and reading with them.”
According to Lynch, Potts has volunteered 92 hours since she started. She works as a recreation volunteer, visiting children independently and spending time with them.
“She is an asset to our volunteer community,” Lynch said.
Another project Potts worked on was Seneca’s annual character breakfast. Families from the community are invited to the school to have a pancake breakfast made by students while others dress up as favorite Disney characters to take pictures with the kids in attendance.
“Our Mickey Mouse pancakes definitely looked like blobs to start but we got the hang of it eventually,” Potts said.
With graduation only a few weeks away, Potts has no plans to stop her volunteer work. She’ll continue to be at VPF over the summer, and her hope is to start a group at Johns Hopkins that also helps raise funds for Give Kids the World.
For more information on Give Kids the World, visit http://www.gktw.org.