St. Simons Island, GA, August 15, 2011 – They thank and honor servicemen and women, work with NASCAR drivers to raise awareness, ride mountain bikes for childhood cancer, and provide clean water for villagers a world away. They are the remarkable kids, ages 7 to 17, who have been named the 2011 winners in the annual Kids Who Give contest, sponsored by Farm Rich.
Kids Who Give (www.kidswhogive.com) is a national program focused on young people who put their time, energy and hearts into helping people and making the world a better place. This year, Farm Rich named a grand prize winner, a first place winner, a runner-up and honorable mentions in three age categories (7-10, 11-13 and 14-17). In addition, America had the opportunity to review the entries and vote for their “Fan Favorite.”
“These are simply amazing kids,” said Jennifer Meetz, Farm Rich director of marketing. “They not only have a selfless spirit, but they’re entrepreneurs who make things happen. They’re doing things both big and small to change the world.”
The 2011 grand prize winners and Fan Favorite are:
Ricky Springer, 9, McDonough, Ga.
Racing for a Cause
Ricky Springer doesn’t want another child to go through what he did before his second birthday – seeing more than 18 different doctors before being diagnosed with eosinophilic colitis. He started Racing for a Cause to create awareness of eosinophil-associated disorders and for doctors to know how to recognize the signs and symptoms. So far, Racing for a Cause has educated over 2 million people and raised more than $4,000.
Mariah Reynolds, 12, Cincinnati, Ohio
Just One Heart, gLOVE One Another, and Heal the Soul
Mariah Reynolds started volunteering at age 6 and has put in almost 5,300 hours of volunteer time so far. She earned the President’s Lifetime Volunteer Service Award after completing 4,000 service hours; today she volunteers about 40 hours a month. She also started three non-profits. Just One Heart sends Valentine’s Day cards to veterans and active servicemen and women; gLOVE One Another collects hats, scarves and gloves for shelters, churches and schools; and Heal the Soul gives mp3 players and iPods to sick children.
Rujul Zaparde, 16, Plainsboro, N.J.
Drinking Water for India
Rujul Zaparde and his friend Kevin Petrovic started Drinking Water for India to build tubewells in remote Indian villages and to inspire and motivate students to recognize and join the mission. Rujul can quickly do the math. Each tube costs $1,000 and helps 1,800 villagers for at least 10 years – or 55 cents per person. So far Drinking Water for India has built 31 wells, which have helped more than 55,000 villagers, with three more wells currently under construction. Over 20 schools and approximately 450 students are involved. Rujul also visits India twice a year to help build the wells.
Nathan Hickey, 10, Monrovia, Calif.
Mountain Biking for Pablove
Nathan Hickey formed Mountain Biking for Pablove to show support for kids with cancer. He rides his mountain bike for Team Pablove in races from March until September, and in October for Pablove Across America. Nathan races to raise awareness of childhood cancer,and in 2009 he raised almost $2,000 with his fundraising campaign.
Grand prize winners will each receive $2,500 for their cause, along with a $500 gift card and a Farm Rich prize pack. Each grand prize winner also will be treated to an all-expense-paid trip to New York City in October for the 2011 Kids Who Give Awards Dinner. First place, runner-up and the Fan Favorite winners also receive cash donations to their charity, gift cards and a Farm Rich prize pack. (See attached list of all winners.)
“An important part of the Farm Rich culture is our commitment to giving back to our communities and what better way to encourage others than by celebrating young people who are doing just that?” Meetz added. “Through Kids Who Give, we not only shine a light on these amazing kids, but we can also shine the light on the millions of committed young people across America who inspire others to become involved in a cause that’s important to them. Together, community by community – and kid by kid – change is possible.”
To learn more, visit www.kidswhogive.com.
A leading brand of Rich Products Corporation, Farm Rich (www.farmrich.com) is based in St. Simons Island, GA, and features a successful portfolio of frozen snacks and appetizer products sold at grocery and club stores nationwide. Featuring the tagline, “Keep ‘em Happy,” Farm Rich makes wholesome, great-tasting snacks that are sure to please family and friends. More at www.farmrich.com.