Kohl’s has announced two local girls as store-level winners in the Kohl’s Cares Scholarship Program.
Lainy Baxter and Maddie Gilley each received a $50 gift card to the store and will be considered for the regional-level title.
Lainy was nominated by her principal at Valley View Elementary School, Sherrie Ledford. In her nomination, Ledford outlined donations Lainey collected for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital last year.
“Her principal made an announcement at school telling about her nomination,” Laura Baxter, Lainy’s mom, said.
The store-level winner said she hadn’t known much about the program until after she was told about Ledford nominating her.
Instead of presents for her last birthday, Lainy asked friends and family to make a donation to St. Jude.
“I decided to do that because I had seen (on television) all these kids that had cancer or other problems and I just wanted to help them... to get better, ”Lainy said.
Friends and family were initially surprised. However, they stepped up to help her reach her goal.
She started with a goal of raising $1,000. When final totals came in, solicited donations brought in $2,080.
“I was amazed. I didn’t think I would make over my goal to $2,000,” Lainy said.
Laura Baxter had contacted St. Jude about the idea and they set up a donation page where people could give.
Lainy plans to spend her prize on clothes for a cruise her family is taking for fall break.
This year, for her 11th birthday on Aug. 27, Lainy plans on collecting clothes for The Caring Place.
Lainy said she originally thought of donating to a thrift store. Later, she decided to collect clothes for somewhere people could receive them for free.
She again plans on asking for the help of friends and family to make a sizeable donation.
Lainy will be attending Lake Forest Middle School this fall, where she will be a part of the choir Rhapsody. She also hopes to play on the school’s softball team.
Cleveland’s second winner was nominated for the program by her grandmother Nancy Moore. Quilted Hugs from Maddie landed Maddie Gilley as a Kohl’s Cares winner.
“I never thought I would win it because I never won anything before,” Maddie said.
Using donated and purchased fabrics Maddie and Moore create quilts for children effected by disaster. Maddie also collects handmade quilts for those in the community.
Her most recent donation was taking 35 quilts to a church in Adairsville, Ga., that was handling distribution of supplies after recent tornadoes.
“Most of them were quilts that were donated to her,” Moore said.
Maddie has completed six quilts and has another partially completed.
As for her gift-card prize, Maddie wants to spent it on toys. However, she said her grandmother would like her to spend it on clothes.
Maddie is taking a break from quilting this summer to enjoy playing with friends and swimming.
Maddie will be attending fourth grade at E.L.Ross Elementary School in the fall.
Regional-level winners in the Kohl’s Cares Scholarship Program will be announced next month.