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2016-09-29-Metta Students Honors 37th Winner $1,000

Selfless, humble and filled with gratitude is how most describe Metta Student Foundation winners’ and that remains the same as the non-profit kicks off their fourth year by honoring a graduate from St. Mary Academy-Bay View with $1,000.

The Metta Students Foundation honored eighteen year old Dakota Grenier at their September 29th, fundraiser, located at the Squantum Association at 947 Veterans Memorial Parkway in East Providence. With this latest winner, the Metta Students Foundation has awarded thirty-seven thousand dollars to students who have done acts of kindness and continue to #sharemetta.

“I nominated Dakota because of her selfless attitude. When Dakota decided to take on the "Student of the Year" campaign, it was personal to her because of her Mom's battle with lymphoma. Over the course of six weeks, students were challenged to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Socie-ty, the "winner" being the one who raised the most money. Being a competitive athlete, Dakota likes to win. Gathering a group of friends to be her "teammates" in the challenge, Dakota did everything in her power to raise as much money as possible. At the end of six weeks, Dakota raised over $35,000. While this in and of itself is commendable, it's not why I nominated her. It's what happened afterwards,” states St. Mary Academy-Bay View, School Counselor, Drea Harms.

“At the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's culminating event, it was announced that Dakota came in second place. For her efforts, she received the Mission Award. This award is given to the student who best exemplifies the mission of LLS. What it tells me is that for Dakota it was never about the money but spreading the word of the great works of LLS. Additionally, the Mission Award came with a $2,500 scholarship. That night at the awards ceremony, Dakota announced that she wanted to give the money to a student at West Warwick High School who had just been diagnosed with leukemia.”

Grenier’s father teaches in West Warwick and had just told her about the student, “Giving back is really what life is all about. Growing up I never really knew what I wanted be, or do as a job, but I always knew I wanted to help people. I have been so blessed with the life I live, it may not be lavish or extravagant, but every day I wake up healthy, in a safe home with my family, and I go to an amazing school with great friends and teachers. However, there are people out there who are sick, who live in danger, who are homeless, who have been separated from their families, there are girls who are killed for trying to get an education, there are kids who are bullied and feel like they don't have friends,” states Grenier.

“There are so many people in the world who will never have the blessings that I have, and that is why it is important to give back. If everyone could just find a cause they were passionate about and give back, we could eliminate so much suffering in this world. People need to grow up wanting to help people. It's important to give back because everyone deserves a good life, with all this world has to offer. Also, by giving back we enrich the lives of not only other's but we enrich our own lives as well. We see life through a new light, and we realize how fortunate we are. Giving back gives life meaning.”

Norm Kelly, founder of Software Quality Associates in Providence, created the Metta Students Founda-tion in October of 2012 after learning of one teen’s act of kindness towards another teen. “Metta means love and kindness,” states Norm Kelly. “We are thankful to all of our winners for making a positive dif-ference in the world and for helping us spread the metta mission to simply be kind and #sharemetta.”

It is for all of these reasons that the Metta Students is proud to award Grenier one thousand dollars.