Record Number of Americans Honored by Charity That Carries Princess Diana's Name on Her Birthday
On the day that would have been Princess Diana's 58th birthday, some of the young people inspired to help their communities around the world in her name are being honored.
The Diana Award, which was established in her memory 20 years ago and has the support of her sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, announced the largest number of young people from the U.S. joining roll of honor.
Nineteen young people from across the U.S. are listed in the rundown of award winners. One is being hosted at special evening at the House of Lords, Westminster, London on Monday.
The Americans represent the largest ever intake for the Diana Award — and follows the successful Changemakers campaign that was specifically set up to widen the impact of the charity. "There was a phenomenal response from across the States," a spokeswoman says.
The "exceptional young people have demonstrated their ability to inspire and mobilize their own generation to service their communities through campaigning, volunteering, fundraising, tackling bullying or overcoming extreme life challenges."
The chief executive of the award Tessy Ojo says, "We know by receiving this honor they will inspire more young people to get involved in their communities and begin their own journey as active citizens."
The Americans are Brandon Gruber, a 23 year old from Brentwood Union school district in California, for founding the 321life+1 Foundation, which helps disadvantaged migrant communities and those with Down's Syndrome; Cory Alpert, 23, for organizing flood relief to families in South Carolina; Dea Kurtu, 17, of Novel Girls, in N.Y. for inspiring young women into STEM subjects; Elizabeth Niemiec, 25, of the Little Wish Foundation that helps children with cancer in Indianapolis; Jahkil Jackson, 11, who set up the Heartland Alliance, which distributes food to homeless people in Illinois; Kamyr Krystal, 19, who helps people living with Alzheimer's Disease in Puerto Rico; anti-bullying campaigners Kheris Rogers, 12, who started a clothing line to remind others they are beautiful, and Mahealani Sims-Tulba, 18, from Hawaii, who has written a book and delivers training; and Meagan Warren, 15, from Ohio, where she set up Books for Bedtime that collects and distributes books to children.
The list adds Minh Nguyen, 16, from California, of USPEAK a special media safe-place; Olivia Van Ledtje, 11, creator of LivBits, to inspire kids and terachers about reading; Oliva Woodrich, 20, from Oklahoma, who was diagnosed with Tourette syndrome, and has spoken on Capitol Hill about the syndrome; Salvador Gomez Colon, 16, from Michigan, for helping get humanitarian aid to Puero Rico after Hurricane Maria; Shruthi Kumar, 16, Nebraska, for her GoYogi mindfulness program to manage stress; and Muscular dystrophy sufferer Tabitha Bell, 18, from Utah, whose Pawsitive Pawsibilities helps provide service dogs for disabled people.
And the honorees also include Tahiris Castillo, 21, Philadelphia, for volunteering with numerous NGOs and non-profits; Tyler Carach, 10, from Alabama, of "I Donut Need a Reason to Thank a Cop" which supports the police; aspiring surgeon Vanica Bajaj, 21, Boston, who's started a project to provide mobile Breast Cancer Screening System for Ghana; Victor Ye, 16, from California, founded InnovaYouth, which promotes intellectual curiosity in the so-called Generation Z.