When 12-year-old Bobby Sena of Hunter’s Creek ran onto the field in Phoenix, Ariz. before kick-off of Super Bowl XLIX, he could have been mistaken for Pittsburgh Steelers player, Troy Polamalu. Although a little shorter, Bobby’s long, luscious curls and glowing smile as he handed the football to the referee was a priceless moment for this extraordinary kid.
Bobby became the eighth NFL Play 60 Super Kid after being selected from thousands of other kids in the Fuel Up to Play 60 program. He won the competition with a video submission about how he is passionate and dedicated to being healthy and by posting a look-a-like photo as Troy Polamalu.
His mother, Marybelle Sena, proudly explains where his health initiatives began. “When he was eight years old he loved being outside, and he was so energetic,” she says. “All of his friends wanted to play video games inside and that made Bobby upset.”
Bobby researched ways to motivate his friends to be more active. He found the Fuel Up to Play 60 program, which encourages students to make small changes at their schools to promote healthy habits. “It was really easy to find and to start,” he says. “I brought the program to my elementary and middle schools.”
Bobby went above and beyond making small changes. He began promoting healthy habits at his elementary school’s parent-teacher conferences. Bobby collaborated with the local fire department, Publix and Disney to give presentations on how to eat healthy and live an active lifestyle. He started vegetable gardens at West Creek Elementary School, Hunter’s Creek Middle School and at the Homeless Coalition Community Food and Outreach Center. Additionally, Bobby founded three after-school clubs, including one with the Florida Hospital for Children called Mission Possible to give presentations on healthy habits.
At home, Bobby stays active by playing football, golf and running around with his puppy named Bear. When he’s not at home, Bobby is at First Tee of Central Florida playing golf. His mentor there, executive director Tom Lawrence, says, “I worked with him pretty consistently in the First Tee program for the first year, and I still see him quite often. I think his win is well deserved. Bobby is quite an amazing young man, and he gives back to community in unique ways far beyond his age.”
After his Super Bowl experience, Bobby has even more motivation to help his school, Hunter’s Creek Middle School. “My school was awarded a $10,000 grant to buy P.E. equipment, and we have an NFL player coming to the school to talk to us about being healthy.”
In the long run, Bobby wants to become the senator of Florida and eventually the president of the United States. “As senator, I want to have a bigger role to help Florida to create more health programs in communities and schools for families and kids,” he says. “When I am president, I want to expand these programs to motivate people at a young age.”