A 16-year-old Westerly girl who lost her mother to lung cancer has raised more than $5,000 for the Lung Cancer Foundation, an effort that resulted in her being chosen to receive the ninth Metta Students Foundation Award.
Molly Giudice turned her private pain into a public crusade to raise awareness and funding, an act of kindness that the Metta Foundation recognized on Oct. 11 at a ceremony at The Prout School in Wakefield. The award is for $1,000.
“I have seen the effects cancer can have on a person,” said Giudice, “and I want to be a small part of helping to find a cure. I want to make a difference. Receiving the Metta Students Foundation scholarship is a great honor. I am so humbled that people are recognizing and caring about the work I have put into this.”
Norm Kelly, founder of Software Quality Associates in Providence, created the Metta Students Foundation in October of 2012 after learning of one teen’s kind act towards another teen. Each month, during the school year, the foundation awards one thousand dollars to a student who shares “metta.”
“Metta means love and kindness,” Kelly, said, “and we are proud to be able to give recognition to all of those bright lights who give back, not because they have to, but because they are truly good-hearted and want to make a positive difference.”
Giudice’s swim coach and director of Admissions at The Prout School nominated her. Shortly after her mother’s passing, the student dedicated a swim meet to her mother. On Oct. 12, she spearheaded a 5K run from the Narragansett North Beach Pavilion. The proceeds go to the Lung Cancer Foundation.
“Molly is an 'inspiration' to me,” said Bonnie Addario, founder of the Lung Cancer Foundation. “With young people like Molly coming up in the world, it is a relief to know our country is going to be in very good hands! The world listens to its young and Molly is a perfect example of what they can accomplish.”