Albany High School Student Named Youth Volunteer of The Year [VIDEO]
ALBANY -- Sixteen-year-old Spencer Linn has been recognized by the Salvation Army's northern division as their Youth Volunteer of The Year.
Linn was instrumental in launching a Red Kettle campaign in his hometown of Albany. Linn is a junior at Albany Senior High School in Albany. He says he was frustrated that his hometown didn't have a Red Kettle campaign.
There was an apartment fire in Albany that displaced some local families. Linn wanted to do something to help those families out and other people in need throughout the community.
He called the Stearns County Service Unit and spoke with social worker, Peggy Kill. Kill met with Linn and helped him set his plan in motion. Linn works at a local grocery store called Amby's. He asked his manager if he could rally up volunteers to bell ring outside of the store.His manager agreed.
"I threw in some Santa hats and some music and I tried to get some carolers. And just change it up a little bit, try to make it different," says Linn.
Linn spent countless hours rallying up fellow classmates and spreading the word about his campaign. Linn's efforts helped raise more than $3,500 for the Red Kettle program.
Kill nominated Linn for the 2014 Salvation Army Volunteer of the Year award which includes 22 states in the Salvation Army's northern division.
Linn says Kill told him, "it's kind of rare that you would win." A few weeks later he was called to his high school gymnasium for an assembly.
He says he thought he was going to another school pep rally. "I walked in and just seen my family, and Peggy and my mouth dropped. I actually had to walk out of the gym because I was so...I was speechless."
Linn was presented with the award and the Salvation Army donated ice cream treats to the school.
"Just knowing that the community will impact from that and the people in need will impact from that, you know...that's what really touched me and that's the most unforgettable thing," says Linn.