RALEIGH – Three high school students with south Charlotte ties were among six North Carolina residents named Distinguished Finalists for community service in The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards.
Distinguished Finalists include:
• Riley Buelow, 13, of Charlotte, a seventh-grader at South Charlotte Middle School, is a co-founder and board member of “Laps for Love,” a youth-run initiative that has raised more than $110,000 for the Charlotte Rescue Mission over the past three years by hosting charitable swim events. Riley identifies and recruits event sponsors and manages media relations.
• Alexander Fultz, 12, of Pineville, a seventh-grader at Metrolina Regional Scholars Academy, has raised more than $10,000 since 2010 to provide gifts to young patients at a local children’s hospital, and recently focused his efforts on providing a gift for every baby in the NICU. Inspired to help sick kids after his brother was hospitalized as a baby, Alexander started his drive using allowance money. He hosts fundraisers and a school collection, as well as speaks with other kids to raise awareness of his mission.
• Malika Rawal, 16, of Charlotte, a sophomore at Providence Day School, is the founder and director of the HelpHygiene, a hygiene education initiative and supply drive that’s raised more than $15,000 and donated thousands of toiletries and pairs of shoes for people living in poverty in Charlotte and abroad. Malika estimates more than 3,200 families in need have been helped by her foundation’s efforts.
“Prudential is proud to recognize these remarkable young people for using their energy, creativity and compassion to bring meaningful change to their communities,” Prudential Chairman and CEO John Strangfeld said. “We hope their stories inspire others to consider how they can do the same.”
Each will receive an engraved bronze medallion.