Area high school students win Peacemaker Awards

  • Franklin County students were recognized at the 2016 Peacemaker Awards for their extraordinary work in churches, schools and communities. recorder file photo

Recorder Staff
Published: 5/9/2018 10:26:06 PM

GREENFIELD — A Franklin County student who helped to organize a walkout against gun violence and seven others will be recipients for the 18th annual Peacemaker Awards.

The awards, which recognize Franklin County high school students and student teams who make positive changes in the community, will be given next Wednesday at Greenfield Community College. The event is sponsored by the Interfaith Council of Franklin County and the Traprock Center for Peace and Justice.

According to Marcia Miller, one of the chairwomen for the awards, the honor highlights “young people for their contributions to well-being, non-violence and justice in our communities.”

Student recipients are: Alex Baciagalupo of Greenfield High School, Dana McRae of Pioneer Valley Regional School, Fatima Rashid and Nailah Barnes of Deerfield Academy, Jeanne Grutchfield of Mahar Regional High School, Landon Summers of Mohawk Regional High School and Emily Young of Turners Falls High School.

One student team led by Mahar Regional High School’s Hugo Frost is also receiving the award.

The students are from Greenfield, as well as the communities of New Salem, Buckland, Orange, Turners Falls and Deerfield. They will receive a cash stipend and certificates for their efforts at a ceremony at GCC’s dining commons May 17, beginning at 7 p.m.

According to Ben Tousley, president of the Interfaith Council of Franklin County, the students are being recognized this year for efforts such as promoting racial justice and helping to organize the National School Walkout.

The walkout was held on March 14, to honor the 17 people killed by a gunman at Marjory Stoneman Douglas School in Parkland, Fla., on Feb. 14. Students walked out of classrooms and schools a month after the shooting and remained out for 17 minutes to honor the lives lost.

Students from across Franklin County, including Greenfield and Buckland, participated in the walkout.

The Peacemaker Awards were founded in 2000 by the interfaith council and Traprock, following the fallout of the Columbine shooting. The event is used to shed light on the positive activities area youth participate in.

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Dan Desrochers at:

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Greenfield Recorder

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