Cardinal Gibbons freshman wins first Teenspace 211 photo contest

Amanda Morris isn’t one to let life slip by without making a difference.

FORT LAUDERDALE — At 15, Amanda Morris has already experienced the death of a friend. The loss prompted her to take something she enjoys, making beautiful beaded jewelry, and turn it into a rewarding fundraising activity that celebrates the life of her childhood classmate, Jessica June, who died of leukemia when the girls were just 7-years-old. She sells the bracelets, necklaces and earrings she makes and gives the money to the Jessica June Children’s Cancer Foundation at Broward General Medical Center.

Amanda is the first winner of what will become a regular feature on Teenspace211 — ordinary teens doing extraordinary things. She sent in a photo herself with several of her beaded bracelets to let us know what plans she has for the summer.

“I still miss Jessica,” said Amanda. I can’t do anything about cancer, but I can make a difference in other ways. This is my way.”

Over the last two years, Amanda has raised several hundred dollars for the Jessica June Foundation and will spend much of her summer patiently beading and selling the jewelry that will help her reach her $2000 goal.

“I make bracelets and $5 of every bracelet goes to JJCCF. I’m trying to sell as many as possible this summer so I am spending most of my free time beading.”

“A goal of raising $2,000 is awesome!” said Sandra Muvdi, Jessica’s mother and president and founder of the Jessica June Foundation. “If Amanda is able to reach her goal, she will fully sponsor a family in crisis impacted by childhood cancer. The Jessica June Children’s Cancer Foundation (JJCCF) will arrange for Amanda to meet the benefiting family who will receive 100% of the funds raised to pay for their basic human needs.”

“I can’t do anything about cancer, but I can make a difference in other ways. This is my way.”

The mission of JJCCF is to provide emergency financial assistance for children fighting cancer in South Florida. JJCCF pays for everyday needs such as medical expenses, utilities, rent, mortgages, car payments, food and gas so that a family can focus on saving the child’s life.

Volunteering is one rewarding way teens can stay out of trouble, make wise choices and make significant contributions to their communities.

“Kudos to Amanda for investing her free time in helping our neighbors in need,” said Muvdi. “I know Jessica is smiling down at her.”

Amanda won a Teenspace211 backpack, a Choose Peace/Stop Violence t-shirt and free ice-cream at Maggie Moos for her photo.

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