Every year, the popular award show CNN Heroes recognizes and awards unsung heroes—everyday people who change the world through charitable acts.
CHS has its fair share of heroes. Two students, in particular, have reached out to make our community a better place.
Although just a freshman, Madeline Statter has proven to care deeply about the community. She takes part in Teen Angel Project (TAP), a local non-profit program for teens whose mission is to provide joy to communities in need through song, dance and theater. Statter and others from the group perform at hospitals, nursing homes and homeless shelters, free of cost.
The program has allowed Statter to use the artistic skills she has learned over her years at CHS to perform for those in need.
“I wanted to take part in it because it is a way to bring entertainment to people who are unable to go out and see a show or a concert,” Statter said.
Statter was also attracted to TAP because she has a brother with autism who enjoys her performance videos but cannot go see her performances because he is sensitive to sound and large crowds.
“I feel that I am letting people see shows and entertainment in a way that’s comfortable for them,” Statter said. “People with oxygen tanks or IVs can enjoy themselves because the shows come to them.”
Although it has been hard to balance TAP and school, Statter claims that it has been worth it because of the memorable experiences she has had in the program.
Statter has a fond memory of a performance at a nursing home where she spotted two elderly ladies dancing and singing along.
“By the end, one of the ladies came on stage and gave us all a hug and later fed us cookies,” Statter said. “I could tell she had been lonely in the nursing home and it felt good to make her feel a little bit better.”
For Statter her experience with TAP and alleviating those in need has been rewarding in many ways.
“After every show, I realize how lucky I am,” Statter said. “I find that an applause from a few people who really need it is much more exhilarating than from hundreds of people.”
Another CHS hero is volunteer firefighter Christopher Hallock. Hallock volunteers with the Rockville Volunteer Fire Department (RVFD). Volunteers are assigned certain days of the week to work from 5 to 7 p.m.
Besides the obvious firefighter duties, Hallock is engaged with the RVFD in unique ways such as hosting children’s birthday parties and selling Christmas trees. Hallock has also represented the department and its values by advocating safety and emergency prevention in speeches to the community, especially to children.
According to Hallock, his most memorable experiences with the RVFD are those that involve children.
“It reminds me of how they are influenced by our actions everyday and how much potential and learning they are capable of,” Hallock said.
However, according to Hallock, being a firefighter has taken away from school to a degree.
“Taking classes for the department as well as volunteering at the station on top of school takes a lot of hours out of the week,” Hallock said. “But it’s extremely worth it.”
Learning about these two CHS heroes may make you think about all the possible heroes around us from your neighbor to maybe a teacher. Go reward, recognize, praise or even plainly thank anyone you think is a hero in the community.