Wicomico Student Wins National Speech Contest

SALISBURY – An elementary school student was honored in Wicomico County last week for winning a national speech contest on kindness.

On Tuesday, June 19, Savanna Brooks, a fifth-grade student at North Salisbury Elementary School, was recognized by members of the Wicomico County Council for taking first place in the National Kindness Speech Contest.

Council President John Cannon presented Brooks with a proclamation to recognize her achievements.

“This is the youngest person I have ever given a proclamation to, ever,” he said. “Congratulations.”

Earlier this year, Think Kindness, a nonprofit organization inspiring measurable acts of kindness in schools and communities around the world, held a National Kindness Speech Contest, which received more than 90 submissions.

The organization selected Brooks’ video submission, “Kindness Can Change a Nation,” as one of 10 finalists and speeches were placed online for a public nationwide vote.

In addition to receiving first place in the contest, Brooks was awarded $2,500 to use on a kindness project of her choice.

“Savanna Brooks plans to use her reward on four different kindness projects in Wicomico County to inspire and educate others on acts of kindness in our community,” Cannon read. “Therefore, the Wicomico County Council is pleased to congratulate Savanna Brooks for being chosen as the National Think Kindness Speech Contest winner.”

Brooks – who was also recognized for launching a Kind Kids Club at her school and taking additional efforts to spread kindness in her community – thanked everyone for their support.

“Thanks to everybody who voted for me because it really means a lot,” she said. “I’m really excited to be receiving this because nothing like this has really ever happened.”

The council on Tuesday also presented a proclamation to the Wicomico County Humane Society in recognition of Animal Rights Awareness Week, an initiative launched in 1999 to advocate for the humane and compassionate treatment of pets, farm animals and wildlife.

Cannon said the humane society has provided shelter for animals in Wicomico County for more than 40 years.

“The Humane Society of Wicomico County works to make a difference in the lives of animals and the people who love and care for them,” he read, “and is dedicated to relieving the pain and suffering of animals through education and direct intervention.”

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.