Yesterday, I had the chance to visit John F. Kennedy Middle School in Antioch, TN to meet with some incredibly talented students who worked hard to raise $1,000 for Haiti relief efforts. The work they did to raise money for such a worthy cause was inspiring, and I left with a renewed and continued sense of optimism about the future leaders we have in Tennessee.
It all started in the Science Club at the school. Reading the news of the devastating earthquake in Haiti, the students wanted to act and do something to help those in need. Several of the students including Tristan Higginbotham, Quai Gordon and Destiny Vaughan, encouraged by their teacher Betty Martin, stood outside the cafeteria at lunch, collecting change and donations to help lend a hand to those in need in Haiti. The seventh and eighth grade Science Club students worked for weeks and weeks collecting money, and reached their goal of collecting $1,000.
After collecting such an amazing sum, the students wanted to find the best place to send the money, hoping to make the biggest difference. After looking at the Red Cross and other organizations, they saw that my global health organization, Hope Through Healing Hands was using 100% of donations for on the ground relief efforts and decided to send the money to Hope Through Healing Hands. With their donation, we will put it to good use, directly helping relief efforts in Haiti.
I am so proud of these students and their hard work. I especially enjoyed getting to meet with them yesterday and talk about topics such as healthy habits, the importance of clean water in developing areas and what in particular the students are learning in their science classes. I encouraged them to continue to work and study hard (and I may have also given a special push for them to consider becoming a doctor).
I would like to thank in particular Betty Martin, their science teacher and Science Club director, Dr. Sam Braden, the principal, and the entire faculty at John F. Kennedy Middle School. We had a great visit, and I am confident that their hard work is making an incredibly positive impact on the students in their school. Middle Tennessee has a lot to be proud of thanks to the leadership of these three girls and all of John F. Kennedy Middle School.