Hello, My name is Ava Ranski, and I am a Young Ambassador for the Henrik Lundqvist Foundation. I was honored to be chosen and even more excited to have the opportunity to give back to people in need.

My Independent Service project revolves around giving back to children who are in hospitals. Due to my disability, Spina Bidifa, I was hospitalized last year for a total of 30 days. Throughout these 30 days, something I did to pass the time was read! That’s how my idea for my fundraiser, “Pages to Pass the Time,” was created. The hospital I chose to raise funds for was the New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, which works closely with the HLF foundation. My main goal for my service project was to be able to provide interesting new books to children who are currently hospitalized. One requirement for those donating the books was they had to be new, due to possible infections that may
carry from child to child. In order to raise funds, I set up three ways to donate. One was an Amazon wishlist that produced 200 books, another was a donations page that raised $1200, and lastly, a drop-off box placed at my town’s recreational center. The books ranged from ages 5-17, and I wanted to emphasize young adult novels. When many people think about a children’s hospital, they assume it’s for younger kids. However, being 16 or 17 in a children’s hospital leaves you with limited book options that are targeted for your age range. This was a meaningful project and near and dear to my heart. I understand what it’s like to be bored while in a hospital bed and would give anything for other kids not to experience the same lonely feeling. Reading provided me with comfort and to be able to give that gift to other sick children of all ages is incredible so I thank those who gave me the platform to help. A big thank you to the Henrik Lundqvist Foundation and all they provided me throughout my journey, and I am excited to continue helping communities in need.

Written by 2023 HLFYA Ava Ranski