NORWICH – Participating in The Leadership Project during his senior year was a life-changing experience, according to Elliott Stewart, who was one of 25 Norwich High School students to attend a four-day retreat in the Adirondacks in early June as part of the pilot program. The experience meant so much to him, in fact, that he wants to make sure other kids have that same opportunity, even if it means raising the necessary money himself.
“(I want) to keep it going, to help kids like it did me,” Stewart explained, adding that he would like to see the program continue so it can “give other kids the chance to change and to find themselves,” as he said it did for him.
Knowing that it would take money to keep the new program going, the 18-year old decided to turn an upcoming trip to California, where he planned to hike at Yosemite National Park, into a fundraiser. Less than two weeks before he was scheduled to fly out, Stewart began soliciting donations. Before embarking, he had received pledges totally more than $900 toward his cause.