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Winter Garden Teenager Recognized for Volunteerism

Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida recently recognized 17-year-old Quavion Smith for his contributions to the organization and the mission to fight hunger.

Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida recently recognized several volunteers for their contributions to the organization and the mission to fight hunger. One of the recipients honored at the 2021 Volunteer Awards, held on August 4, was 17-year-old senior at Apopka High School, Quavion Smith.

Smith received the Andre Reyna Award, which recognizes a young individual who goes above and beyond in their volunteer efforts.

“First, my condolences to the family of Andre Reyna. It means a lot to me because we both share the same goal; fighting hunger. I hope that I can continue to spread as much hope as he did,” says Smith. “I would like to thank the Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida and Ms. Ortiz for choosing me for such a prestigious award. Also, I’d like to thank the Herald of Hope and Ms. Candace for providing me an opportunity to volunteer.”

Mindy Ortiz, Director of Volunteer Services, Second Harvest Food Bank of
Central Florida says Quavion was selected for this award for “all of the time and dedication that he has provided to our feeding partner, Herald of Hope. He has been a consistent and reliable volunteer there throughout the pandemic. Our mission is to create hope and nourish lives through a powerful hunger relief network, which is exactly what Quavion did by volunteering at Herald of Hope food pantry and helping with its mobile food distributions.”

Since August 2020, Smith has volunteered twice a month at Herald of Hope, a partner pantry of Second Harvest, distributing food to the community.

“First, I started volunteering at Herald of Hope to obtain volunteer hours for a Bright Futures scholarship. Secondly, I’m volunteering to help my community during these troubling times (COVID-19 Pandemic),” says Smith.

To date, the Winter Garden teenager has logged 68 volunteer hours, which has saved the pantry an estimated $1,850. Smith’s dedication to volunteering is unwavering according to his grandmother, who stated he’s only missed one Saturday – and that was to take the SAT.

“The most rewarding experience was seeing the smiles on the faces of families that I’ve helped,” says Smith.

In his spare time when not studying or volunteering, Smith enjoys playing video games and talking with his friends. His goal for next year is to attend college and major in Business Management.

Second Harvest Food Bank relies on the generosity of all of its volunteers who give their time to help their neighbors facing hunger. “It would be a great challenge to do what we do without them,” says Ortiz.

To learn more and volunteer at Second Harvest, visit www.feedhopenow.org.



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Written by Kaitlyn Fusco

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