2017-10 - James Botelho

“To be honest I don’t think that I did anything differently than anyone else. I simply just treat people the way I want to be treated.” seventeen year old James Botelho of Berkley, MA said of his volunteering experiences.  "I found that my purpose in life is to help others and if you want to change the world, it’s as simple as making one person’s day better. Since I was young I’ve always wanted to go into the military and when I was in 9th grade I found out about the JROTC at my school so I quickly joined.I became a known face in the corps because I went to almost every community service event there was. I didn’t do it because I wanted rank or anything to do with me. I fell in love with helping others and putting smiles on people’s faces. It makes me feel good which allows me to share that feeling with others,” states Botelho.

Now in their third year, the Metta Students non-profit foundation awards $1,000 grants to students who pay it forward or #sharemetta. To date, they have awarded $46,000. Thursday, October 19th, the Metta Students Foundation had an award ceremony at Taunton High School in Taunton, MA.  Members of the media attended.

Norm Kelly, founder of Software Quality Associates in Providence, created the Metta Students Foundation in October of 2012 after learning of one teen’s act of kindness toward another teen. “Metta means love and kindness,” states Norm Kelly. “We are thankful to all of our winners for making a positive difference in the world and for helping us spread the Metta mission to simply be kind and #sharemetta.” Major David Anderson, USAF (Retired), nominated Botelho saying, “he embodies the principle of service before self.  He is a very humble young man who believes it is everyone’s responsibility to take good care of their neighbors.  He puts those beliefs to work every day as he leads the THS Air Force Junior ROTC cadets along a path of selfless excellence.  He has participated in hundreds of community service activities during his time here at the high school, and has helped raise money for charities, fed the hungry at local soup kitchens and supported our military veterans, among many other charitable acts of love.”