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Two local groups honored at National Jefferson Awards

Posted at 12:20 AM, Jun 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-29 00:20:50-04

INDIANAPOLIS -- "Students in Action" from Fishers High School won a silver medal at the National Jefferson Awards in Washington, D.C. on Thursday night.

The organization creates student-led service projects that serve the broader community.

Students at Fishers High School worked to stock the shelves at their local food pantry, provided care packages for the homeless, and collected sports jerseys to send to kids in Colombia.

The advisor for "Students in Action" first started this club at Decatur Central. He then moved to Fishers High School. For the past three years, his school has been selected for the trip to Washington.

But Eduardo Torres says it's not about the work he does, it's all about the students.

"There's what you want to do, and there's what we think we can do. And when we go for those high-level goals, the challenge gets harder. When the challenge gets harder, they get more invested, and we always strived to go beyond what we think we can do. Sometimes we fail, and those are even the moments of celebration as well because we learn just as much through our failures as our successes," Torres said.

"Students in Action" won the silver medal for Best Public Service by a High School at the National Jefferson Awards.

They competed with more than 400 schools from across the country.

Scott Newman and Kristy Follmar were also recognized at the awards for their work with "Rock Steady Boxing."

Rock Steady helps people battle Parkinson's Disease.

Newman helped found the organization after being diagnosed with the disease 18 years ago.

"We had, at that time, zero facilities that I know of that were devoted to Parkinson's rehabilitation and unlocking the power of this. Today there are 625 locations of Rock Steady boxing in all 50 states and ten countries," said Newman.

If you'd like to nominate someone for a Jefferson Award, click here.