Community Service Awards

The JLMN accepts nominations annually for a select group of high school Juniors and Seniors to receive Community Service Awards (CSA).
Eligible students will have exemplary records of community service including demonstrated leadership and/or sustained commitment to a project or organization. Candidates must reside or attend school within the JLMN service area. Each applicant should be sponsored by a community agency, high school official, or JLMN member.  Click HERE for the 2016 application.

2015 Community Service Award Winners

Matthew Blum, junior, Golda Och Academy

Matthew has served one organization over the past five year, Friendship Circle, which assists families who have children with special needs through a series of social and respite programs. Matthew’s sponsor spoke so fondly of his impact on her special needs son. Ms. Prince stated, “The day Matt Blum walked through our door, my son’s world changed.” Matthew notes that the interaction through the Friends at Home program has helped him develop “perspective and bravery.” Matthew’s dedication is commendable and will most likely continue to grow over the years.

 Samantha Daggett, senior, Verona High School

Samantha has an impressive background of volunteering numerous hours with several organizations and projects, including but not limited to Heroes & Cool Kids, Camp Fatima of New Jersey, Caring Kids Fight for a Cure, Christmas Angels Project, Youth Cheerleading Clinic and Camp New Day Carnival, all of which serve children.  While Samantha has worked on many different interesting volunteer projects, Samantha pointed out that Camp Fatima, which serves children with special needs, was a “life-changing experience.” She believes that this experience has helped prepare her “… for success by learning about the diversities of people and understanding the challenges that some may face.”

Esther Edwards , junior, Lacordaire Academy

Esther has had a variety of volunteer experiences with South Mountain Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center, a food pantry and Senior Citizen Homes.  Her sponsor characterized her as “a perfect recipient of this award as she is always giving her time to people in need [and] her dedication is not because she needs to do community service but because she wants to.” Esther started performing community service with her mother and her church. She enjoyed doing it so much that she looked for other opportunities. Esther looks forward to spending time with the seniors every Saturday serving lunches, playing bingo and just chatting it up with them.  Esther is quite a special young person.

Jessica Nagy, senior, Verona High School

Jessica has volunteered with several organizations including but not limited to Hearts of Hope, Habitat for Humanity, Valley Hospital and Essex Oncology Group. Her sponsor describes her as influential and inspirational as “she blossomed from her initial role as a volunteer in our Hearts of Hope program to organizer and facilitator at Verona High School.” Jessica is completing her Senior Capstone project this year by spending the last month of school volunteering at Overlook Hospital’s Pediatric Oncology ward. Jessica feels that her “passion for inspiring others is something that will grow during [her] college experience.”

Alexandra Sabato, senior, West Essex High School

Alexandra has participated in various community service activities, including but not limited to Autism Speaks, Municipal Youth Guidance, Hair Extensions for Autism & Breast Cancer, Tina Coppola Cancer Foundation, Youth Soccer League and Lacrosse, and as a matter of fact, Alexandra has a Lacrosse game tonight and couldn’t be here.  Lexie, as she is affectionately known, and her sponsor mention her personal connection to Autism as she has grown up in a household with a brother who was diagnosed with Autism.  Many of her community service hours have been dedicated to raising awareness and serving populations affected by Autism. Lexie’s sponsor, who is her school counselor, characterizes her as “a focused, conscientious, giving young woman who will make a difference on her college campus.” Lexie acknowledges that her intimate experience with autism has “inspired [her] to want to give back and help others with disabilities.” Further, the awareness she has about the challenges of Autism has affected Lexie “as a student and athlete by developing an attitude of not taking anything for granted and that anything is attainable as long as you are willing to work hard.”