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Local Middle Schooler Donates More Than 120 Hours of Support

I wanted to help kids who are not as fortunate as I am.

When 15-year-old Ashley Burke first reached out to Boys Town New England's Development Office in the summer of 2018, Development Coordinator, Elizabeth Rose, was impressed and excited.

“Ashley needed a project to do for her Girl Scout troop and chose Boys Town," Rose said. “She had already researched our organization and was eager to help children in need. After identifying a project that could be done from afar – Ashley lives in New York – she offered to make gift tags for our Adopt a Child Christmas drive. They were adorable and the kids loved them! We were so thankful for her support."

But it didn't stop there. Ashley wanted to continue helping and soon pitched a second project following a suggestion made by Boys Town staff. Since many of the kids who arrive at Boys Town New England are lacking basic toiletries, Ashley volunteered to make dozens of drawstring toiletry bags and source all the items needed to fill them – right down to the hourglass timers the children could flip to make sure they were brushing their teeth for the appropriate amount of time. Ashley also provided plenty of boxes filled with extra items.

In all, Ashley put in more than 120 hours on the project, including traveling from her home in New York to deliver all the items, tour the campus and meet Boys Town youth and staff. From working on the project, Ashley said, “I learned that not everyone is born into an ideal childhood or has the same opportunities as I do. There is always something you can do to help others, no matter how big or small."

Through her work with Boys Town, Ashley was able to earn her Girl Scouts Silver Award, the highest award a Cadette can receive. Over the last two years, Ashley has shown an amazing dedication to supporting children in need – and for that the entire Boys Town New England team is incredibly thankful. Well done, Ashley!

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