Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Why I Relay

Name: Bailey Smith
From: Hudson, FL
Grade: 12
School: Fivay High School
Votes: 0

Why I Relay

Volunteering to me is a full-time job where I get paid in warm and fuzzy feelings.
I work closely with the American Cancer society and our local Relay
for Life every year to help raise money to find a cure for cancer.
For the last four years, I’ve been honored to be a main student
lead in our school’s committee, Time To Make A Difference. I’ve
also had the pleasure of working on the committee for the whole Relay
for Life of Hudson, Fl. Volunteering with Relay for Life is not just
a one night thing like most people think. It takes weeks of early
mornings and late nights to prepare everything. Our committee has
worked hard to have a booth that appeals to all ages. Our booth is
the one you can see from state road 52 as you drive by, so we always
have big inflatable slides to attract more people. I’ve had the
pleasure of putting together the Luminaria service every year, which
is always loved. I spend long hours incorporating our whole theme of
that night into this one service. I strive to help soften the heavy
hearts of some, and touch the light hearted. The biggest struggle I
find is trying to attract more people. We have very generous
individuals in our community, who go around to every booth and try to
buy something, but just a few aren’t enough. I’m working hard to
inspire other youth to take that initiative Relay for Life has been
more than volunteering to me. No amount of money I could make working
will amount to the feeling of being thanked by a cancer patient.
There is no better feeling than being told that I give someone hope
to keep fighting this disease. The position I have in this event has
made me grow as an individual. It has helped me step out of my
comfort zone and put someone else’s needs first.

I love my community and I enjoy giving back. Community service should
not be something you do just to get the hours for scholarships,
community service should be something you cherish and enjoy. There
are many ways to give back and earn hours; I believe every student
should find their true passion in the community and pour their heart
into it. My career goals fall in line with wanting to help
individuals and give them hope. I want to be a physical therapist
because when I went through a traumatic injury, I was afraid I
wouldn’t be able to play sports again. It was my doctors and family
that gave me that hope to get pushing on. As I graduate high school,
I want to see other students step up to the plate and continue being
a major team at our Relay for Life event. I hope in ten years, relay
will be a celebration of life because we worked hard and found the
cure for cancer.

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