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Youth Spotlight: Addison Hunt

Updated: May 2

As Addison wraps up her junior year at Oak Ridge High School, she reflects on her involvement with Hands4Hope - Youth Making A Difference since first participating in the Marina View Middle School Hands4Hope Club. In addition to participating in on-campus Clubs, she has participated in practically every type of Community Engagement Opportunity and Committee there is! She has no plans to slow down, either, and hopes to continue her involvement in Community Engagement Events and Committees while she takes on a new leadership role in her on-campus Club. Read on to learn more about how this busy and well-rounded teen leverages Hands4Hope as a way to deepen her connections with her friends, her community, and her own family.

Tell us about your involvement with Hands4Hope - Youth Making A Difference.

Before COVID I was in the Marina Village Middle School Club. I have been a part of the Oak Ridge Inspire Hands4Hope Club for two years and will be Secretary of the club next year. I participated in the Kid Zone Area at the El Dorado Hills Town Center Freedom & Fireworks event, and Hands4Hope Fall Festival Committees in 2022, and then had leadership roles in both Committees the following year. I also participated in the School Supply Committee last year. I was the Volunteer Management Lead for the Winter Boutique Committee last year and was the Soup/Bread Co-Lead for the 2024 Empty Bowls Committee. I currently participate in the Hands4Hope Emergency Food Pantry and ASPIRE Outfitters Committees, both of which are year-long committees, and with the Ryan Christopher Hersh Scholarship Committee. I have volunteered at multiple different community engagement events such as Mercy Creekview Senior Dinner, Upper Room Soup Kitchen, MAPS, White Rock Village Homework Hub, and GVCC Distribution.

What motivated you to get involved with Hands4Hope?

My family has been involved with Hands4Hope for a long time and my older brother was a big part of the organization when he was in middle and high school. He is the reason that I joined, but the people I met and the lessons I learned are the reasons that I decided to take a bigger role in the organization. I enjoy being a part of the committees and being able to see the events that we plan succeed. It is heartwarming to be able to see our actions make a difference in the community and that motivates me to continue putting my time into Hands4Hope.

How have your experiences in Hands4hope shaped you into the person you are today? 

Through Hands4Hope I have learned how to better voice my ideas and work well with other people. Being a part of different committees has helped me become more confident in my ideas and abilities. When I joined my first committee I was very quiet and would just listen to everyone else’s ideas but now I’m not afraid to state my own opinion and contribute to the meetings. This has also helped me work well with others in school activities and be more outgoing in my social life.

What is one favorite memory or moment so far with Hands4Hope?

One of my favorite memories so far with Hands4Hope was last year’s Kid Zone Area at the El Dorado Hills Town Center Freedom & Fireworks event. This was the first time that I had a leadership position in a committee and I was able to see all of the planning come together to create a fun experience for the youth in our community all while raising funds to go back into helping those in need. All of my siblings were also volunteering at the event and our parents stopped by to watch the fireworks with us. The event was a fun and rewarding experience and I enjoyed spending time with my family.

One of my favorite outreaches that I have participated in is the White Rock Homework Hub / Kidzone. I have been volunteering there for almost a year and I really enjoy spending time with the kids. I volunteer with one of my friends and we help the kids with their homework, do fun projects, and play games. Note: Addison can be seen in our recent White Rock Homework Hub / Kidzone video!

What would you tell someone who is considering joining Hands4Hope?

I would tell them to absolutely join and would recommend for them to convince their friends to join too. I had a bunch of my friends join the school club two years ago and throughout these two years we have done numerous outreaches and committees together. I have also met many new people through Hands4Hope and enjoy working with others on projects and events. Everyone that I have met through Hands4Hope has been super nice and welcoming and it made me look forward to volunteering and attending meetings. There are so many different opportunities to get involved and everyone can find a way to help their community while also having fun and gaining valuable skills!

How do you see yourself being involved with Hands4Hope in the future?

In the future I plan to continue volunteering at the outreaches that I currently do, and hopefully take part in more leadership roles for the different committees throughout the year. I want to help others become involved with Hands4Hope and I will continue to participate in Hands4Hope through my high school years. I also plan to be an active participant in the alumni arm once I graduate.

What is one thing with Hands4Hope you are looking forward to?

I am looking forward to being a leader for the Oak Ridge Inspire Club next year. This will be my first time being involved in the high school Club leadership and I am excited to work with the other leaders. I hope to motivate more high schoolers in the Club to join after-school committees because they truly are fun and rewarding experiences. I am also excited to participate in the leadership camp later in the year. I am looking forward to the fun, youth-led activities that I get to experience with the other leaders.

What other activities do you enjoy?

Outside of Hands4Hope - Youth Making A Difference, I enjoy playing basketball, reading, and hanging out with friends and family. I play on the Oak Ridge Varsity Basketball team and enjoy traveling to tournaments with my teammates. My current favorite book is The House In The Cerulean Sea. I enjoy going to the lake with my friends and skiing and hiking with my family.


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