Holy Cross student ‘with a passion for philanthropy’ wins
Outstanding Youth award at annual Philanthropy Day luncheon
By Laura Keener – Messenger Editor
The Greater Cincinnati Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals awarded Heather Konerman, a senior at Holy Cross District High School, its 2017 Outstanding Youth award. Ms. Konerman was honored, along with three other “givers,” on National Philanthropy Day, Nov. 9, at a luncheon held at the newly renovated Music Hall, Cincinnati. Her teacher, Gayle Trame, who is moderator for the high school’s Magnified Giving program, nominated her. In the nomination Mrs. Trame described her as “an inspiration, with a passion for philanthropy and a willingness to do what it takes to make a difference.” In one year of high school Ms. Konerman logged over 600 hours of community service. For the past three years she has been awarded the school’s Outstanding Christian Leadership Service Award. Particularly noteworthy, and a project that was dear to Ms. Konerman, was organizing a weeklong baby item drive for the Rose Garden Home Mission, Covington, last spring. Through her leadership students from Holy Cross collected almost 1,000 baby items. “I have volunteered for the Rose Garden in the past and I love how they help the community, especially babies and their mothers. I love how they respect the dignity of every human life,” said Ms. Konerman. “The students loved shopping for baby items and were motivated to donate to a great cause.” Part of what makes Ms. Konerman’s philanthropy outstanding is her leadership. She believes that helping others is not only good for her but is also good for everyone. She invites her friends to participate and encourages them to be an inspiration for others. “I invited friends and others because I wanted them to be inspired by giving. I always have fun giving and I want to show others how much fun it can be. Working together, we can all inspire each other. Hopefully, the people that I inspire will inspire others as well,” she said. “It is a joy to serve others.” Another project that caught the attention of her teacher involved soliciting donations from local businesses to raffle at the school’s pancake breakfast. Proceeds from the raffle were used to benefit the Magnified Giving Charity fund. And while many find it intimidating to ask for donations, Ms. Konerman is able to see beyond the “ask” to the “benefit.” “I like asking for support,” she said. “I find it easy to ask for help or donations because I know that it will benefit others. The majority of the people are excited to help and donate. They love seeing young people in the community giving their time, talent and treasure. The people I meet are always joyful givers.”
Heather Konerman (left), senior, Holy Cross District High School, holds her Outstanding Youth award at the National Philanthropy Day luncheon, Nov. 9, at Music Hall. She is joined (from left) by Roger Grein, founder and president of Magnified Giving, a high school philanthropy program, and Gayle Trame, teacher and HCDHS Magnified Giving program moderator.