Two years ago, Jennifer Gibbs assisted at a Christmas party hosted by the Variety Club of North Texas and came up with a few big ideas of her own, namely wrapping the 1,200 presents collected for needy children.

The Variety Club didn’t have the manpower to tackle such a request, so Jennifer recruited 10 friends, wrapped the gifts and established the Young Variety Club.

With 116 student members from 12 schools, the Young Variety Club now plays a major role in the lives of many Dallas children.

The group’s goal is to help children who live in abusive homes or are separated from their families. Jennifer organizes T-shirt painting sessions, games times, pumpkin painting, trips to the movies, and clothing drives for the kids at Buckner Children’s Home.

“For one so young to have a vision and be able to follow through and achieve that vision is a great feat,” says Kevin W. Coyne, who nominated Jennifer for this award.

Nonprofit agencies throughout Dallas need more youth volunteers like Jennifer. Find out how you can help by picking up the 1997 edition of “Who Cares? You Can. The official guide to volunteer opportunities for folks under 21.”

This free book is available to local libraries or by sending $2 for postage and your address to the Volunteer Center, 1215 Skiles, Dallas 75204. For more information, call the Volunteer Center at 214-826-6767, ext. 242.