Earlier this year, eighth grade Hannah Parker, was selected to represent the town of Winthrop in Project 351, a non-profit organization that brings kids from all 351 towns and cities in Massachusetts together for a year long journey of building leadership skills. While her experience has been different to previous ambassadors, Parker has managed to execute many of her projects both in person and virtually.
On January 18th, Parker attended a launch day in Boston, where she joined the other 350 ambassadors in Faneuil Hall for a day of service. Also in attendance was Governor Charlie Baker, who talked about his background with Project 351. Parker then joined fellow ambassadors at UMass Boston to pack boxed lunches for people in need. The group then went to the JFK library and donated toiletries such as toothpaste, soap and deodorant to help the “Be Like Brit” organization. On that day, in total, Project 351 supported 18 nonprofit organizations that addressed issues such as hunger, homelessness, childhood poverty, and educational opportunity.
During her time serving on Project 351, Parker has the opportunity to manage a Spring Service Project. She had planned on running a clothing drive for Cradles to Crayons from March 23rd to April 3rd, however; it was cancelled due to COVID-19.
After this was cancelled, Project 351 started an eight week “Service Leadership Academy” (SLA). SLA provides many different leadership workshops for all of the ambassadors to participate in virtually.
“Over the past eight weeks I have engaged in many webinars through Zoom with many incredible leaders including, First Lady Lauren Baker, Billy Shore (Founder and CEO of “Share our Strength” organization), New England Patriot Devin McCourty (McCourty Twins Tackle Sickle Cell organization), as well as other leaders of non-profit organizations,” said Parker. “I have also participated in many activities including researching and reporting on my local food bank during the pandemic and a recycling project. I was also able to be involved in the Free Rice Initiative. Finally, I am looking forward to participating in a Virtual Reunion which takes place on June 17th.”
When Parker isn’t busy working on Project 351’s many projects, she participates in student council and plays soccer, hockey and lacrosse.