YR Stories: Addi Hape

YR Stories: Addi Hape

Addison ‘Addi’ Hape, an 8th grader at Helfrich Park Middle School, was introduced to YR in a way that changes the meaning of the phrase “YR Family”: though her sister!

“When my older sister, Mia, started her journey with YR I knew I would do the same. I’ve always looked up to Mia. I always wanted to do what she did. The first opportunity to be included in YR I took it.”

YR’s TEENPOWER Youth Staff is trained to be leaders and great role models, but this experience was especially unique for Addi as her older sister was on youth staff during her first TEENPOWER.

“I went to middle school camp for the first time and it was one of the best experiences I have ever had. I made so many new friends and I really felt like I belonged.”

Addi’s YR Story doesn’t end there either. Her love of TEENPOWER and YR gave her the opportunity to do something bigger than she had ever done before: a MAD Grant project!

“A little while later I had an idea but I didn’t have any funding for it. So my mom and I applied for a MAD Grant. This opened a world of opportunity for me.”

Addi was able to go to Tekoppel Elementary School and mentor fifth grade students about how to best prepare for middle school and how to be more confident in such a big change. She used her experience and leadership to educate students, and she made a big impact on their journey to middle school.

“I got to help students not just with school but with their life ahead of them. I believe I had a big influence on the girls I taught at Tekoppel.”

Addi was able to accomplish so much important work in our community, but she believes she couldn’t have done it alone. She had the support of her family to help her along the way.

“So many doors have opened for me not just because of my sister but my family in general. Without my mother I wouldn’t have gotten to be where I am today. I wouldn’t have gotten the courage to apply for a MAD Grant.”

Addi’s story is just one example of the amazing work happening in our community. Thanks to MAD Grants and the support of both her YR and actual family, Addi got to realize an idea to help others. We are so glad that YR gets to be a part of Addi’s impact. Way to go, Addi!