A Coon Rapids girl has been volunteering since the was three years old.
Becca Wichlen is now 14 years old and a freshman at Coon Rapids High School.
Her volunteer work has not gone unnoticed.
Wichlen will be honored at the 10th District American Legion and Auxiliary convention in May with the Good Deed Award.
She is a member of the Coon Rapids American Legion Junior Auxiliary and her grandmother, Shirley Mosher, is a member of the Coon Rapids American Legion Auxiliary.
She enjoys volunteering, Wichlen said.
“Volunteering makes me feel good and I enjoy helping people,” Wichlen said.
Wichlen started her volunteer work at a Columbia Heights nursing home where her great-grandfather was living.
She took part in game day once a month at the nursing home and found out how much fun it was to interact with the residents, according to Mosher.
“Even though her great-grandpa passed away several years ago, Becca continues to volunteer at the nursing home,” Mosher said.
But Wichlen’s volunteering goes beyond the nursing home.
As a child, Wichlen attended the Coon Rapids Day Care Center, which is located at the Coon Rapids United Methodist Church.
Wichlen still goes to the day care center, but as a volunteer now.
She works at the day care center’s carnival every year and this year she also painted bean-bag toss characters on large pieces of plywood for the carnival, Mosher said.
The characters were from cartoons such as Cookie Monster and Sponge Bob Square Pants, she said.
Wichlen is also involved in volunteer work through participating in the many activities of the Girl Scout troop of which she is a member.
This includes packaging food at Feed My Starving Children in Coon Rapids, which Wichlen said all the girls enjoy doing.
Indeed, Wichlen has earned her Girl Scouts Bronze Award and for the past few years, she has sold over 500 boxes of Girl Scout cookies, according to Mosher.
Wichlen’s volunteer work extends to the Coon Rapids American Legion.
Last summer, she volunteered at the old car show, which took place on a series of Tuesday evenings in the Legion post parking lot.
Wichlen was a waitress, delivering hundred of hamburgers to both the old car owners and people attending the event to look at the vehicles.
“She and her younger brother both plan to participate again this year,” Mosher said.
“Everyone at the Legion knows Becca.”
As a freshman at Coon Rapids High School, Wichlen has been a member of the football and basketball cheerleaders through which she had been involved in volunteer work for the Missing Grace Foundation.
According to its website, the Missing Grace Foundation’s mission is to provide resources and support for families that have experienced pregnancy loss, infant loss, infertility or adoption and to advocate for comprehensive, patient-focused prenatal care for all women.
Five core areas encompass the heart of the foundation’s mission – grieve, restore, arise, commemorate and educate, the website states.
Wichlen had planned to go out for track this spring, but an ankle injury has prevented that, she said.
Wichlen has lived in Coon Rapids her whole life, attending L.O. Jacob Elementary School from kindergarten through second grade, then Morris Bye Elementary School and Coon Rapids Middle School.
Peter Bodley is at firstname.lastname@example.org