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FWHS student Caleb Dawson honored by State House
Caleb Dawson, a Federal Way High School senior and student leader, was honored at the April 2 meeting of the Federal Way City Council for his extensive volunteer work throughout the community.
State Rep. Linda Kochmar, a former council member, was on hand to read a proclamation from the State House of Representatives honoring Dawson's commitment to service in his community and his selection as a Prudential Spirit of Community Award honoree.
"It's really my pleasure to be here to recognize one of our high school students," Kochmar said. "And it's just not any student. He's the president of the student body at Federal Way High School, he's been very involved in activities in our community, far and above of just being in high school."
Kochmar read the House proclamation, citing Dawson's selection for the aforementioned award, and the reason for that selection.
"Mr. Dawson earned this award by giving generously of his time and energy to his community by coordinating a food drive that collected nearly 12,000 pounds of food, and rallied our young people for the greater cause," Kochmar said from the proclamation.
Dawson also had the opportunity to speak at the recent We Day event in Seattle. He said the Prudential award, and the recognition by the House, are both significant honors to him.
"I've had a lot of opportunities to serve the community, and it's been a privilege," Dawson said. "I really appreciate all the positive feedback from the city council, the school board, and from representatives such as Linda Kochmar. It's been a really positive experience."
Dawson credited the Advancing Leadership Youth program for being a major influence on his community involvement.
"I was in that program, and they really gave me an outlook on this city and how to get involved and how to use community resources to take action," he said.
The FWHS senior related his experiences about his event, "253 Scares Hunger," which brought together 19 schools from six districts, along with three private schools, to collect food for local charities. According to Dawson, the grand total ended up being 12,562 pounds of food, which went to Federal Way's Multi-Service Center, Saint Leo's Church in Tacoma, and the Puyallup Food Bank.
"It was an incredible experience," Dawson said.
About the award
The Prudential Spirit of Community Award, according to the website for the award, is the United States' largest youth recognition program based exclusively on volunteer community service. The program was created in 1995 by Prudential in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) to honor middle level and high school students for outstanding service to others at the local, state and national level.
The program's goals are to applaud young people who already are making a positive difference in their towns and neighborhoods, and to inspire others to think about how they might contribute to their communities. Over the past 17 years, more than 345,000 young Americans have participated in the program, and more than 100,000 of them have been officially recognized for their volunteer efforts, according to spirit.prudential.com.