June 1st local Eagle Scout, Elijah Kelly, was presented a certificate and the James West Fellow award for being selected as having the National Eagle Scout Association Most Outstanding Service Project of the Year for Apopka Shores of the Central Florida Council BSA.
Elijah’s project was selected from over 250 others. Boys are generally close to 18 when they complete their Eagle. At only 14, Elijah’s young age and the magnitude of his project were part of the deciding factor. His project took on deep meaning to him when he elected “Read to Sydney” as his benefactor. Elijah has always struggled with reading as have most of the children, many with special needs, that this program benefits. With a heart for children’s literacy Mr. Thomas Battisto founded “Read to Sydney” and many have actually learned to read while reading out loud to therapy dogs like Sydney and her predecessor Toby.
Elijah’s project included a book drive, building a wheelchair accessible table and computer work station, supplying book shelves, bean bag chairs, dog mats, an area for parents to sit and a local company donated 2 complete computers filling the space at “Sydney’s Reading and Learning Center” with bright colors and a warm inviting appearance. Elijah has been recognized by the South Lake Chamber of Commerce for his Philanthropic efforts and is the Spectrum News 13 “Viewers Choice, Hero of the Year”. It has been quite a year for Elijah and as always he thanks our community for their support.