A Columbia fifth-grader has been named one of America's top 10 youth volunteers of 2017 by The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards.
11-year-old Harmonie Frederick was selected from a field of more than 31,000 youth volunteers to receive the title.
Harmonie, a fifth-grader at Polo Road Elementary School, sold lemonade to raise money and awareness to fight cancer, conducted a coat drive to keep those less fortunate warm in the winter, and volunteers at a local nursing home.
After Harmonie's mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and her father was diagnosed with leukemia, Harmonie sold lemonade at her church to support cancer research. She also recruited friends to help out at a breast cancer fundraising walk and recognize survivors with pink roses.
When Harmonie noticed that a friend came to school with no coat on a winter day to protect him from the cold and rain, she initiated a coat drive through her church and ended up with more than 800 garments for both children and adults.
At a local nursing home, Harmonie plays the piano for the residents, calls out bingo numbers, serves ice cream, and polishes fingernails.
"If you see a person in need, anyone can help," said Harmonie. "You don't need to give money, but you can help by doing small gestures to show that you care about them. I feel great when I can make someone happy."
Along with the title of National Honoree, Harmonie earned a personal award of $5,000, an engraved gold medallion, a crystal trophy for her school, and a $5,000 grant from The Prudential Foundation for a nonprofit charitable organization of her choice.