The Richmond Register

Education

March 1, 2014

‘Don’t Monkey Around, Be A Children’s Champion’

A Daniel Boone student wins billboard contest third year in row

RICHMOND — You don’t have to wait around to be a children’s champion and you shouldn’t have to think about it, said Raelynn Miller, 11, a fifth-grader at Daniel Boone Elementary.

"You just do it ― like the Nike concept,” she said explaining her winning poster entry “Don’t Monkey Around” in the annual Be A Children’s Champion billboard contest.

She tries to be a children’s champion each day, she said, by “cheering kids up when they’re feeling down.”

In front of her classmates Wednesday, Raelynn was presented with a plaque and $100 from the Kiwanis Clubs in Richmond and Berea. Judge/Executive Kent Clark read a proclamation that designated March as “Be A Children’s Champion” month.

Beginning next week and for two months, Raelynn’s poster will be displayed on three billboards, one in Berea and two in Richmond.

Raelynn said seeing her billboard will make her feel very proud of herself.

"I look forward to driving past it on my way to school every day. My parents keep talking about it,” Raelynn said with a laugh.

She knew she wanted to choose bright colors and contrasting red lettering, she said, so that her poster could show up well on a billboard if she was to win.

Raelynn is the 16th winner of the annual contest, and the third student in a row to win from Daniel Boone Elementary School. Last year’s winner was then-fourth-grader Tanner McIntosh.

One entry is chosen from each elementary school in the Madison County and Berea districts. Those entries were then voted on by the Children’s Champion of Madison County committee, led by chair Phillis Adams.

Adams was Kentucky River Foothills Head Start director until she retired after 35 years of service. Along with Family Resource and Youth Services Center directors from local schools, she helped begin the group in 1997.
The following year, the group began displaying the posters on billboards through the generosity of local sponsors and contributors such as the Kiwanis Club, Adams said.
“The whole idea is to make everyone in the community more aware of doing the right thing for kids,” she said. “We want adults to be more thoughtful about children’s issues and become advocates for them.”
The main responsibility of the group is to “get the message out,” Adams said. “And to be on the forefront of making things better for our kids.”
Along with countywide student participation, the billboard poster contest is a great way to reach out to the community, she added.

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