The following is a blog from U.S. women’s national team legend Julie Foudy:
I feel like the proud mother of 70 babies. Well, ok, 70 leadership service projects. I truly felt that same sense of pride while reading about these awesome projects from the Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy’s (JFSLA) students and the girls of our partner nonprofit, Girl Talk (and the good news is they don’t require being bathed and fed! J). I am still beaming that more than 60,000 people were exposed to the great work our girls are doing in their communities through our first ever JFSLA “Choose to Matter” Contest. Our hope is that by reading about these amazing leadership projects, many more people will be inspired to the do the same in their community.
Huge congratulations to our four winners who, thanks in large part to the generosity from McDonald’s and The Century Council, are heading to the Olympics this summer as Youth Ambassadors for McDonald’s “Champions of Play” Program! Here are the grand prize Choose to Matter Contest winners:
- Jackie Schaefer (age 12) “Kids Helping Kids,” from Jacksonville, FL (JFSLA New Jersey)
- Amanda Christianson (age 14) “Cleats for Kids,” from Plainfield, IL (JFSLA Illinois)
- Gulafsha Kamrulhodda Ansari, “Giving Girls a Chance to Play,” (age 16) from Mumbai, India (JFSLA California)
- Girl Talk: Moriah Wilson (age 14), “Lil’ Hearts of Love: Pillows and Pages Edition,”Atlanta, GA (GirlTalk)
- New Jersey:
- 2nd place: Mariana Azevedo, “Mother Nature Strikes…Teen Defends!”
- 3rd place: Nicole Romola, “Bear Hugs”
- 2nd place: Madison Martin, “Big Sister to Down Syndrome Kids”
- 3rd place: Amy Scruggs, “Teen Pride Volunteers”
- 2nd place: Maryssa Beare, “Operation Save Second Base: Breast Cancer Awareness”
- 3rd place: Montana Ankner, “Let’s Put An End To Cyberbullying”
- Girl Talk:
- 2nd place: Emily Huff, “Choose to Matter 24/7/365”
- 3rd place: Erin Ernst, “Spreading Christmas Hope”
CHOOSE TO MATTER.
You can make a difference every single day, the question is — will you?
We asked our girls to choose to matter and look at the results. http://contest.juliefoudyleadership.com/2012-jfsla-choose-matter-contest-winners
Now ask this of yourselves and each other: if we all just did a bit more to mentor, give back, lend a hand, help a friend, help a stranger -imagine the results.
Thank you to the 70 girls who just reminded us of the potential for good. In all of us.
Live. Lead. Pass it On…. and remember to keep laughing.
- Julie Foudy