Six children from across the United States who are devoted to helping animals have been named winners in the American Humane Association’s Be Kind to Animals Kid Contest, which honors kids who’ve gone out of their way to improve animals’ lives.
Two grand prize winners will receive $2,000 each and an American Humane prize package, while four runners-up will receive $750 and a prize package.
The award recipients have all dedicated much of their free time to helping animals. While some spent their time volunteering at animal shelters, others raised funds by making and selling knickknacks.
“These children ably demonstrate the qualities that help create a more humane and caring society. They are inspiring examples and role models for children and adults alike,” American Humane President and CEO Marie Belew Wheatley said.
The grand prize winners are:
- Sharlynne Legere, age 11, Riverside, Calif. After a local therapy dog named Havoc became ill and needed expensive surgery to save his life, Sharlynne took action. She raised $200 by making and selling beaded jewelry and crosses, and her compassion inspired her community to raise $14,000.
- Molly Knox, age 6, Pitman, N.J. Molly established “Molly Knox Pet Socks” in 2002 to help local cats in shelters and rescue organizations. She gathers socks from her friends and recycles them, turning them into catnip-stuffed toys. She then sells them and donates the money to local animal rescue organizations or gives them to cats in animal shelters. With money she has raised, she has also bought four sets of animal oxygen masks for the local fire department.
The contest’s four runners-up are: Candice Dickerson, age 12, of Upper Sandusky, Ohio; Clay Ferguson, age 11, of San Leandro, Calif.; Madison Ashworth age 9, of Thayne, Wyo.; and Clare Konieczko, age 9, of Warren, Mich.
Be Kind to Animals Week 2007, observed May 6 to12, celebrates the companionship, friendship and love that animals bring into people’s lives. Animal shelters throughout the country are holding special events during the week to raise awareness about being kind to animals and to teach people about the benefits of the human-animal bond.
The 2008 Be Kind to Animals Kid Contest will begin accepting nominations in March 2008, and American Humane will announce the winners during next year’s Be Kind to Animals Week, which is from May 4 to 10, 2008.
For more information on Be Kind to Animals Week and for tips on showing kindness to animals, visit www.americanhumane.org/bkaw.