.

Teen Do-Gooders Honored in Minnetonka

The 2011 Caring Youth Awards were given out on Thursday night in Minnetonka.

Thursday night, 31 local kids were honored for their volunteer work in the west metro community. Held at the , the 2011 Caring Youth Recognition event honored young people in grades seven through 12 who have unselfishly involved themselves in a cause or situation benefiting others.

Hennepin County Commissioner attended the event.

“This gives us a chance to recognize not the quantity of what people do but the quality,” Callison said. “I think it’s a special opportunity to acknowledge how much it means in someone’s life to have somebody there that’s caring about them.”

Caring Youth Awards are given to youths who have demonstrated caring by reaching out to others or whose day-to-day lifestyles reflect uncommon concern for others.

Senior was nominated for her volunteer work with the school district’s Youth Development Council.

“It was just a lot of fun to help the community,” McDougal said. “I’ve been given a lot, growing up in Minnetonka we always get a lot of recognition and a lot of fun stuff given to us, so it’s nice to be able to give back.”

According to Minnetonka city officials, the Caring Youth program is designed to support an attitude of giving without an expectation of reward or recognition.

“I just do this for fun, my work and everything.  I didn’t expect to receive an award, but I got one,” Minnetonka High School student Bentley Clarke said. Clarke was nominated for his work at in Golden Valley.

This year’s featured speaker was Kathryn Higgins, who volunteers extensively in the Hopkins and Minnetonka community. As a Hopkins Rotary member, she participated in that organization’s Thrive Mentorship Program (similar to Big Brother Big Sister). She also coaches an adult adaptive basketball league through , assisted with the annual gala, painted homes with Hearts and Hammer and is one of 15 directors of Minneapolis’ Pub and Putt event that raises money for local charities. Higgins is from Plymouth.

Minnetonka’s Nick Lunde was honored for his work with the . He told Minnetonka Patch that his volunteer work is a very important part of his life.

“It’s just a good role model for younger children,” Lunde said of being a volunteer in the community.

Civic and service organizations, schools and faith community members in the Golden Valley, Hopkins and Minnetonka communities submitted nominations for the awards.  The Caring Youth Recognition event is a collaborative effort among the cities of Golden Valley, Hopkins, and Minnetonka, the Minnetonka and Hopkins school districts, and the Glen Lake Optimists of Minnetonka.

The 2011 Caring Youth Recipients

  • Farhiya Ali, Hopkins High School student and Hopkins resident, nominated by Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis for her work with young patients.
  • Sarah Baker, St. Paul Conservatory for the Performing Arts student and Golden Valley resident, nominated by Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis for her work with young patients. 
  • Caitlin Beauchamp, Minnetonka High School student and Shorewood resident, nominated for her work with the Minnetonka High School Optimists Club.
  • Erin Breen, Minnetonka High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for volunteer work with the school district’s Youth Development Council.
  • Bentley Clarke, Minnetonka High School student and Golden Valley resident, nominated for his work at Speak the Word Church International in Golden Valley.
  • Sarah Cook, Minnetonka High School student and Chanhassen resident, nominated for volunteer work with the school district’s Youth Development Council.
  • Caroline Doherty, Minnetonka High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for her volunteer work at the West Suburban Teen Clinic in Excelsior.
  • Bridget Friendly, Minnetonka High School student and Shorewood resident, nominated for volunteer work with the school district’s Youth Development Council.
  • Scott Gleason, homeschooled student and Golden Valley resident, nominated for his volunteer work at the Church of St. Margaret Mary in Golden Valley.
  • Fiori Goitom, Hopkins High School student and Hopkins resident, nominated by Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis for her work with young patients at Children’s Hospitals.
  • Megan Gonzalez, Hopkins High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for her volunteer work with children in the Hopkins School District.
  • Kira Hanna, homeschooled student and Minneapolis resident, nominated for her volunteer work at St. Luke Presbyterian Church in Minnetonka.
  • Emily Herrmann, Benilde St. Margaret’s High School student and Hopkins resident, nominated for her volunteer work at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Hopkins.
  • Alexandra Johnson, Hopkins High School student and Eden Prairie resident, nominated for her volunteer work with an after-school homework program at Eisenhower Elementary School in the Hopkins School District.
  • Brendan Johnson, Minnetonka High School student and Eden Prairie resident, nominated for volunteer work with the school district’s Youth Development Council.
  • Tyler Keller, Minnetonka High School student and Excelsior resident, nominated for his volunteer work at the Animal Humane Society in Golden Valley.
  • Ryan Kemp, Minnetonka High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for his volunteer work at the ICA food shelf in Minnetonka.
  • Alexander Kimball, Hopkins High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for his volunteer work at the Minnetonka Library.
  • Denzel Kla Diihbah, Hopkins North Junior High School student and Hopkins resident, nominated for his volunteer work with the Hopkins Police Department’s “face2face” community event.
  • Zoe Korengold, Hopkins North Junior High School student and Plymouth resident, nominated for her volunteer work with Students Promoting Positive Actions. Her most notable accomplishment has been working with other youth to persuade the city of Minnetonka to declare certain youth-oriented park facilities in the city as.
  • Nick Lunde, Minnetonka High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for his volunteer work with the Minnetonka United Methodist Church.
  • Courtney McDougal, Minnetonka High School student and Deephaven resident, nominated for volunteer work with the school district’s Youth Development Council.
  • Malika Musa, Hopkins North Junior High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for her volunteer work with the Hopkins Police Department’s “face2face” community event.
  • Soraya Nassiri, Minnetonka Middle School West student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for her volunteer work with the Minnetonka Heights Community Program.
  • Ryne Nichols, a student at the Robbinsdale School District’s Cooper High School in New Hope and a Golden Valley resident, nominated for his volunteer work at Valley Community Presbyterian Church in Golden Valley.
  • Hannah Pearson, Hopkins High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for her volunteer work with the Girl Scouts.
  • Jeni Pederson, Hopkins High School student and Edina resident, nominated for her volunteer work with in Minnetonka..
  • Skai Plotnick, Hopkins High School student and Minnetonka resident, nominated for her volunteer work with the West Suburban Teen Clinic in Excelsior.
  • Katie Segner, Benilde St. Margaret’s High School student and Golden Valley resident, nominated for her volunteer work with a wide range of organizations, from Feed My Starving Children to food shelves to the Autism Society of America to student opportunities at her high school.
  • Maray Singleton, Hopkins North Junior High School student and St. Louis Park resident, nominated for volunteering at First Church in St. Louis Park.
  • Matthew Stetler, a student at the Robbinsdale School District’s Armstrong High School in Plymouth and a Golden Valley resident, nominated for his volunteer work with the Golden Valley Library.
Troy Melhus March 18, 2011 at 07:16 PM
This is great. Great pictures, too. Congratulations to all of you.

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »