In 2010, a young third grader at Bradley International set out with a mission; she was going to collect pennies.
These pennies would be donated to a charity known as Pennies for Peace, which used the money to buy school supplies for girl students in Pakistan and Afghanistan. At the time, a single penny could buy a pencil, which, as founder Greg Mortensen explained, was the foundation for an education.
Several months later, Hannah Blanchard Obolsky had raised over $3000 in spare change for the charity and had given several talks to her school on education rights in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
"Every year around International Human Rights Day on December 10, hundreds of thousands of people around the world send a letter or e-mail on behalf of someone they've never met, as part of Write for Rights. Our messages help convince government officials to release people imprisoned for expressing their opinion (called "prisoners of conscience" by Amnesty), stop the use of torture, commute death sentences, and end other human rights abuses."
-Write for Rights (Amensty International)
In 2015, Hannah wrote five letters to international leaders and prisoners of conscience around the world. Her recipients included King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud and Muhammad Bekzhanov Otryad, a journalist who is imprisoned in Uzbekistan.
Combining her two of her passions, Hannah set out to write 100,000 words in100 days to raise $1000 for the environmental group the Sierra Club. At the end of the hundred days, she had finished several short stories and raised $1,060 for the charity.
She would like to thank the fundraising website, Crowdrise, for their unique and easy to use program.
When Hannah heard about the project to put a pipeline through the heart of Standing Rock, she and her twin brother took to the streets of Denver to protest. She also raised money to support her Lakota godfather, a man who she has looked up to since she was little.
She is incredibly proud and inspired by his hard work and dedication, as well as the determination of the other tribes that protested.
Within minutes of hearing that Hurricane Harvey made landfall, Hannah set up a fundraiser to help provide relief to those impacted by it. With the generous love and support of her friends and family, she was able to raise $400.
She was also able to help raise an additional $100 to help one family particularly hit by the devastation.