Student Inspired By Local Children to Do Good in the World
WESTMINSTER, VT- In March of 2014, 14 year old Madison (Maddy) Schumacher participated in an annual project that changed her life. The Project Week, called “Kids Helping Kids” was coordinated with her classmates from New Hampton School in New Hampshire, a boarding and day school for grades 9 – 12. The purpose is to provide their high school students time for an extended investigation of key issues through educational opportunities not possible in the standard classroom setting. The school has a partnership with Kurn Hattin Homes in Westminster to be used as a learning site. Kurn Hattin is a residential school and home for at-risk children. The New Hampton kids cheerfully participated in a number of maintenance and community service projects, assisting the teachers by tutoring young readers and mentoring the younger children at the campus. Working with children in need had a profound impact on Maddy. “She came home filled with purpose,” remembers her father. “She said she wished she was rich so that she could give a lot of money to the school.”
She decided to start The M.A.D.D.Y. Fund (Making a Difference for Disadvantaged Youth). The idea was to coordinate a number of fundraising projects with the help of friends, family, classmates, and other members of the community. They held yard sales with donated items to raise funds, and also had collection cans on-site at events. Maddy collaborated with all of her dorms on campus to have two clothing drives, providing incentives for her fellow students. “We had boxes in every dorm to encourage their families to donate. The dorm that collected the most (Galletly Dorm) won a pizza party,” she explained.
In the end, Maddy raised over $3,400 for the children at Kurn Hattin Homes, and delivered 25 boxes of clothing. As she presented the check to the school she thanked the young children for inspiring her to “do good in the world”. She announced that The M.A.D.D.Y. Fund will give to a new organization each year, and continue on after she graduates. Her father Doug Schumacher smiled and shook his head, “It’s really great when your own kids inspire you to be better…”