by: Cecilia Dawson
Madison Dowell a 17-year-old, Reformation Church member, recently completed the building of a playground for a foster home. She has been working diligently through American Heritage Girls to accomplish her Stars and Stripes Award. This project is the highest award you can achieve in American Heritage Girls, it shows an immense amount of leadership and perseverance.
“My love for kids inspired me to seek a project that will bring excitement and fun to children. My heart would be joyful knowing frightened foster children will be laughing and playing.”-Madison Dowell
The process of finding a project, putting together the details, and raising the money was very hard and took months. After much searching, Madison found the spot to build her epic playground, the Everyday Blessings Foster Home in Lithia would suit her purpose perfectly.
She then started to raise money by selling shirts, doing spirit days at various companies, and receiving donations from friends and family members.
Starting on February 4th volunteers came out to Everyday Blessings to proceed with the building of the playground. The playground included a swing set, gaga pit, monkey bars, hopscotch, and four square. There were a total of 5 workdays. These days were filled with hard work and lots of smiles. With all the volunteer hours added together, there were roughly 185 hours of volunteer work.
Finally, on March 7th the Grand Opening was held. Madison Dowell proudly cut the ribbon, it was such a beautiful sight to see all the foster kids happily playing. This day was filled with joy not only from the foster children but also from all the volunteers who gathered around and especially for Madison Dowell.