Indiana Connection and Indiana’s electric cooperatives are proud to sponsor the Youth Power and Hope Awards program. Since 2009, the program has annually honored Indiana youth in grades 5-8 for their community service. Being an active member in the community can mean anything from volunteering at your church to being involved with 4-H to helping support local hospitals or other community organizations.
The winner of the 2020 Youth Power and Hope Award is Kyle Kinker of McCordsville. Kyle is the son of Brent and Hollie Kinker and a seventh grader at Mt. Vernon Middle School. Kyle has volunteered for 4-H and has spent a lot of time volunteering at the Kenneth Butler Memorial Soup Kitchen in Greenfield. Kyle says “My favorite volunteer activity was the soup kitchen. What I like most was meeting the volunteers and patrons. It is awful to be cold and hungry. I’m glad that I’m able to help my neighbors go to sleep at night with a full stomach.”
When asked to describe what community service means to him, Kyle responded “To me community service means helping people who are in need of help such as less fortunate people who can’t always repay the favor. I like knowing that my community is healthier and safer because of people who volunteer their time.”
Chris Wade, Volunteer Coordinator at the Soup Kitchen says “I have interviewed and worked with many of our younger volunteers over the years. While I cannot remember each one, Kyle Kinker is a different story. This young man came to us back in 2019. The reason I can remember him is he genuinely wanted to be here. I appreciate when our youth are hard workers, energetic and finish a task with no hesitation.” “This is the beginning of a genuine servant’s heart for years to come.”