As part of the award for his community service, Nichols received $1,000, an engraved silver medallion and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington D.C. with 100 other top youth volunteers from across the country.
Nichols said that at least half of his winnings would go back into C the Difference, and that most of the rest of the money would be saved for the future. He did allow, however, that he might buy himself something special while in the nation’s capital.
Nichols is not new to volunteering: before he worked with the local food pantries, he volunteered with the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to preventing HIV infection and eliminating pediatric AIDS. Nichols said his work with the foundation was also a part of his motivation to begin his own project.
“When I’m at the hospital and see the sick kids,” Nichols said, “it makes me feel really happy that I’m helping.”