Jordyn Colville is a young hero.
That’s literally the title the 11-year-old Bridesburg student was given by the National Liberty Museum in a ceremony Aug. 9.
The museum annually recognizes young people ages eight to 18 who work for positive change in their schools and communities with its Young Heroes Awards.
Colville was awarded for her activism efforts in the past year at Bridesburg Elementary, from which she will be moving on in the fall to attend New Foundations Charter School.
Colville, along with 16 other winners, will also be part of a yearlong Young Heroes exhibit at the museum, slated to begin within the next six months.
And while Colville has been recognized for her efforts throughout her school, her family members said that she is thoughtful and helpful to others in every part of her life.
“She takes my feelings into consideration,” said her mother Karen Colville.
In fact, Karen Colville said, when she and Jordyn went shopping for a new dress for Jordyn to wear to the Young Heroes Awards ceremony, Jordyn suggested to her mother that they just shop at Target to save money.
“I told her, ‘I’ll take you anywhere you want,’ and she said, ‘I don’t want you spending a lot of money,’” Karen Colville said. “She thinks a lot about other people.”
When taking stock of Jordyn’s accomplishments at Bridesburg Elementary, it’s clear that’s very true.
Sharon Shea, a teacher at the school, nominated young Colville for the award due to her work with several programs — Colville took the lead on an anti-bullying initiative, did work for Operation Gifts for Giving, helped coordinate a school wide recycling program and helped raise money for Alex’s Lemonade Stand.
In an interview Aug. 10 at her Lefevre Street home, Colville discussed her motivations as a young leader and the details of her involvements.
“I just think it’s very fun because I’m helping other kids and having fun at the same time,” Colville said of her work.
As president of her school’s branch of the National Elementary Honor Society, she took it upon herself to spearhead the school efforts that led to her nomination and win.
Colville organized a recycling program that arranged for a group of students that would go from classroom to classroom collecting plastic bottles to recycle. If a student turned in a bottle, he or she received a ticket that would go into a drawing for a prize at the end of each week.
“There’s recycling bins everywhere [at the school] but we never use them,” she said. “I thought we would get a lot [of bottles] if we just gave them tickets for it.” She added that students got excited about the program, and one student brought in two trash bags full of bottles.
She also helped organize and contributed to the school’s efforts for Operation Gifts for Giving, which donates toys to the children of active duty military parents during the holidays.
For her involvement with Alex’s Lemonade Stand, Colville and other students sold lemonade and lemonade-flavored cookies at parent-teacher conferences after school, and eventually surpassed their goal of raising $1,000.
Colville said she had a lot of fun helping organize an anti-bullying program at Bridesburg Elementary. She and other students created posters displaying anti-bullying messages and posted them throughout the school.
“We tried making them [the groups] fun so kids would want to be in it,” she said.
Colville, who said she’d like to be either a doctor or a crime scene investigator as a career, said she felt very proud and excited when she heard she won the Young Heroes Award.
She said she feels that the groups she helped to become successful set a good example for other kids at Bridesburg Elementary.
“Some kids in the beginning of school year didn’t care if they got in trouble,” she said. “Doing all the programs, I think it helped them listen more and [realize] that they wanted to be involved.”
Karen Colville said she knows that her daughter is definitely a leader, and she’s a very proud parent.
“She’s very headstrong about what she does,” she said of her daughter. “I wasn’t surprised [that Jordyn won the award], but I was of course very proud.”
Jordyn’s sister Brittany, 19, said she’s amazed at her younger sibling’s accomplishments.
“It’s just amazing all the stuff she finds time to do,” she said.
As she moves on to a new school, Colville said she is very excited, even though she won’t know any fellow students. She’s not worried, she said, because she really likes meeting new people.
“I can get along with people very good, it’s just really easy for me,” she said.
Karen Colville said though she’s always proud of her daughter, it became clear to her how significant Jordyn’s work is when stacked against the other winners’.
“Yesterday, after sitting through the whole ceremony and seeing how amazing these children were…” she said, “…she was a part of it.”
Star Managing Editor Mikala Jamison can be reached at 215-354-3113 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.