High School Humanist

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By Season of Giving

Four years ago, Claire Love was more than a wide-eyed freshman trying to find her way at Oak Park River Forest High School. She was a budding humanist looking for a way to help people in need. She found it through the Huskie Helpers, a service club for high school students with big hearts and a commitment to Hephzibah's kids.

Love threw herself wholeheartedly into her role as a Huskie Helper, coordinating movie nights and recreational outings for the children at Hephzibah Home, raising funds, collecting school supplies, organizing events and expanding the reach of her high school service club by recruiting scores of additional volunteers. She was also adept at seeing a need and filling it. When she noticed that the African American boys living at Hephzibah Home needed positive African American male role models, she recruited members of her high school's wrestling and football teams to share friendship, mentoring and fun.

So, it was no surprise to us when the college-bound senior received the 2019 Oak Park-River Forest Community Foundation's Excellence in Philanthropy Award for an Outstanding Young Person—and then chose Hephzibah as the recipient of her $1,000 award grant. "It has been a joy to see children who were once shy and reserved blossom into strong, confident kids at Hephzibah," Love reflected at the award ceremony. "I will carry Hephzibah's mission and values with me for the rest of my life." 

To learn more about volunteering and how you can help the children at Hephzibah Home go to www.hephzibahhome.org.

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