Englewood teen named one of three winners of prestigious national honor

Grace Wickerson honored for project to help survivors of domestic violence

Grace Wickerson. Photo courtesy Sarasota County Schools
Grace Wickerson. Photo courtesy Sarasota County Schools

Pine View School student Grace Wickerson is one of three winners of the Jefferson Awards Foundation’s LEAD360 service ideas contest, the Foundation has announced.

One of the nation’s most prestigious and longest standing organizations dedicated to empowering and celebrating public service, the Foundation announced the names of the winners this week. They were selected by 100,000 online votes in a contest that took place Feb. 4-14, a news release says.

LEAD360 is a platform for simple, fun and scalable service designed to offer accessible projects while measuring and celebrating impact,” the release points out. It is open to those between the ages of 5 and 25.

LEAD360 starts with collecting ideas for social change, asking young people what they care about and how they would fix the problems they see, the release continues. The Foundation then takes the three best ideas selected by an online vote, “breaks them down into easy-to-do and replicable projects and makes them available to anyone” wishing to activate them, the release says.

Grace, 17, was recognized for Kickin’ Violence, the release explains. Her idea is to distribute “survivor packs” to survivors of domestic violence to help them get back on their feet “and [let them] know someone out there is thinking of them,” the release adds. “Each pack will consist of toiletries, a journal, and a note of encouragement,” the release notes.

To learn more about the Jefferson Awards Foundation, visit the website or engage with its community on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, the release says.