Nominees sought for youth volunteer awards

The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards has beguns its search for New Hampshire’s top youth vol­unteers of 2016.

The annual national awards program, sponsored by Prudential Financial in partnership with the Na­tional Association of Sec­ondary School Principals, honors students in grades 5-12 who have made mean­ingful contributions to their communities through vol­unteer service.

Through Tuesday, Nov. 3, middle school and high school students are invited to apply for Prudential Spir­it of Community Awards at spirit.prudential.com.

The top middle and high school volunteer in each state will receive $1,000, a silver medallion and an all-expenses-paid trip with a parent to Washington, D.C., for several days of national recognition events. State-level runners-up will receive bronze medallions or certificates of excellence.

In Washington, 10 na­tional honorees will be named America’s top youth volunteers of the year. They will be presented $5,000 personal awards, gold me­dallions, crystal trophies for their nominating schools or organizations, and $5,000 Prudential Foundation grants for charities of their choice.

All middle and high schools, as well as local chapters of Girl Scouts, 4-H, American Red Cross, YMCA and HandsOn Net­work, can select local honor­ees for state-level judging.

New Hampshire’s top youth volunteers of 2015 were Daniel Iacopucci, 18, of Belmont, and Elizabeth Hughes, 11, of Bedford.

Iacopucci, New Hamp­shire’s top high school volunteer, created a picnic area and perennial garden along the Winnepesau­kee-Opechee-Winnisquam Trail, a paved walking and biking trail in a neighboring community.

Elizabeth, New Hamp­shire’s top middle school volunteer, spent eight weeks over the last two years vol­unteering in foreign coun­tries with her family, donat­ing supplies and working on construction projects.