A 12-year-old girl who runs a charity that donates backpacks with school supplies in Loudoun County, Virginia, has been awarded a scholarship for her leadership.
Ryan Janaske works with her mother to help provide backpacks with school supplies for families in need as part of her organization, Kids Helping Kids.
She was awarded a $1,000 college scholarship and an additional $2,500 from Prudential Financial. She is donating $1,500 to Mobile Hope food pantry in Loudoun County.
“It makes me sad that they don’t have it, but it makes me happy that I get to give them what they need,” said Ryan, who collects backpacks and supplies to donate each school year.
Ryan works with principals at Trailside Middle School and Ashburn and Sugarland elementary schools to help identify families in need of supplies.
Her mom, Christine Janaske, said schools count on Ryan’s email in mid-August, when she inquires about dropping off the school supplies.
“When you realize your kid has that kind part of their soul, it’s a pretty good feeling,” she said.
Social distancing has made donations low at the moment, so Ryan has been turning to social media platforms like Facebook to encourage people to keep donating what they need.
She currently has enough supplies to fill about 60 backpacks, but her goal is to fill at least 100.