LAFAYETTE -- Kate Walner of Lafayette is among the grand prize winners of the 2012 "Choose to Matter" contest sponsored by former U.S. women's national soccer team star Julie Foudy and her Sports Leadership Academy, in honor of her work to gather library books for Oakland schools.
Kate's project, "Boxes, Bags and Bins of Books," focused on helping the Oakland Unified School District get more library books. Hannah, Kate's camp mate at the Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy, organized a book drive in support of three Oakland elementary schools -- Allendale, Brookfield, and Lafayette. They collected 1,149 books of all reading levels and genres, providing more than 360 books to each school.
Amanda Brown, 12, of Moraga was a finalist in that same contest, for her project "Books for Children's Hospital." That work focused on collecting books from friends, family and neighbors which she then donated to her local hospital, Children's Hospital Oakland. She had set an initial goal of 50 books and exceeded this by collecting more than 140 books, including slightly used books and some Spanish books for children who speak Spanish.
Walner, 14, will join Foudy and five other winners from across the country on an all-expense-paid trip in May to Walt Disney World All-Star Sports Resort, and a role as a youth leader at Special Olympics Florida State Summer Games happening at ESPN Wide World of Sports.