Julie Lindell, 17, a senior at Shoreham-Wading River High School, is one of 10 U.S. students to be awarded $10,000 in a community-service competition.
Lindell has chosen Hope Children's Fund, a Setauket-based nonprofit, to receive the funds. It supports the Jerusha Mwiraria Hope Children's Home in Kenya. Her achievement is featured in a story at hopechildrensfund.org.
Since 2011 Lindell has spent seven weeks on three visits to Kenya to assist with projects aiding children and helped organize local benefits for the nonprofit.
The competition, Amway's "Who Cares Challenge: Youth Leadership Contest," required students to submit essays outlining their community service. Entries were narrowed to 100 via online public voting, and the winners were selected by the nonprofit Free the Children.
"I would not have been able to write such a great essay if not for the inspiration I got from the kids," Lindell said.
During her visits to Kenya, Lindell's activities included helping build a technical training center.
At her school she is a member of the National Honor Society and vice president of Best Buddies, a program for friendships between special-needs students and their peers.