The Heart of America Foundation® announces Adelaide E., as the second place winner of the 2015 Gee Whiz Kids® Service Award. The Gee Whiz Kids® Award is designed to honor exemplary children age 12 and under, who represent the best of their schools and communities via service activities.
Adelaide and her father spent the month of July 2015 shoeless to raise awareness and funds for ‘The Shoe That Grows’, a nonprofit that produces adjustable shoes designed for growing children in developing countries. To encourage others to participate, Adelaide laid out “Addie’s Barefoot Challenge”, which encouraged other kids and adults to experience the woes of going shoeless for 24 hours and then donate to the cause. The local community raised over $3,500 in total.
Adelaide has also championed a nearby playground that had fallen into disrepair. She wrote letters to public officials, published a letter-to-the-editor, and even spoke at a borough Assembly meeting. Adelaide maintained that adults had forgotten about parks and playgrounds and someone needed to remind them that kids need a safe place to have fun. Her YouTube video “An Important Message about the Monroe Street Tot Lot” reached enough people that the local news paper ran a story and within a few weeks, much of the equipment had been replaced. There is now a plan for a full renovation in the future. On a more personal level, Adelaide looks to demonstrate practical compassion in the small, everyday things such as volunteering alongside her parents with an organization that packs and delivers groceries to under-resourced families.