Sheyenne High School Senior Nationally Recognized for Volunteer Work
West Fargo, ND – (February 18, 2021) – Cayden Anderson, a senior at Sheyenne High School, has been recognized as one of two of North Dakota’s top youth volunteers of 2021 by the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program. The national program is conducted by Prudential Financial and the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) and honors young people for outstanding acts of volunteerism.
Anderson created calming kits for classrooms at the West Fargo Early Childhood Center to assist staff members in the teaching young children coping and attention skills. “As a volunteer church preschool teacher, I’ve become increasingly aware of the struggles that young children, especially those with anxiety or sensory-related disorders, face when learning emotional intelligence and coping skills,” said Anderson.
After researching ways in which children can learn about emotions and self-regulation and surveying teaching staff, she decided to apply the strategies to assemble the kits and donate them to the Early Childhood Center. She spent months collecting donations, shopping for supplies, and preparing the kits, which ultimately include children’s books about emotions, sensory bottles, pinwheels, laminated materials, supplementary binders, and resources for families. Twenty kits were delivered to the Early Childhood Center and are now being used by teachers, speech language pathologists, and an occupational therapist to benefit more than 150 students. “When children learn to control their emotions and develop calming skills, they will know how to act in a way where they can safely express what they are feeling,” she said.
For her recognition, Anderson receives a $2,5000 scholarship, an engraved silver medallion, and an invitation to the program’s virtual national recognition events on April 30 – May 2. During the recognition event, Prudential Financial and the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) will select 10 of the state honorees to be named the country’s top youth volunteers of the year. These national honorees receive an additional $5,000 scholarship, an engraved gold medallion, a trophy, and a $5,000 grant for a nonprofit charitable organization of their choice.
ABOUT THE PRUDENTIAL SPIRIT COMMUNITY AWARDS
The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program is the United States’ largest youth recognition program based exclusively on volunteer community service.
Created in 1995 by Prudential and the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), the program honors middle level and high school students for outstanding service to others at the local, state, and national level. Thus far, it has recognized more than 140,000 young people who’ve made a difference – and inspired countless others to consider how they might contribute to their communities. The Spirit of Community Awards program also honors youth volunteers in countries outside the U.S. where Prudential has a significant presence: Japan, India, China and Brazil.