Passavant Memorial Homes Foundation (PMHF) is proud to announce the recipient of its 2022 Community Service Scholarship. This scholarship was created to honor the memory of Jamie Ellenberger, an individual served by Passavant Memorial Homes Family of Services (PMHFOS) who was an active member in the community. The principle of community is central to PMHFOS’s mission, to empower individuals with intellectual disabilities, autism, and behavioral health needs to live successfully in the community.
PMHF aimed to award this scholarship to a student in the region who brings that same understanding of the value of community service, and this was found in Ms. Norah Carter of Pine-Richland High School in Allegheny County who was presented with a check for $10,000 to be applied to her college tuition..
As the Community Service Chair for a local organization, Ms. Carter has led initiatives to support Operation Christmas Child, collected over 800 canned goods and over 150 coats for local charities, and raised over $5,000 for Riding for the Handicapped of Western PA. Ms. Carter also realized that she had the ability to make a difference in the community by using her passion for mental health awareness to help other youth cope during the COVID-19 pandemic. She developed and facilitated five educational workshops for tweens and teens that focused on resilience, healthy behaviors, and adaptive coping using the 4-H Thoughts Matter and Health Rocks curriculums. As a result of the program, the youth participants articulated that they felt stronger, more confident, and in better control of their lives. Ms. Carter’s hope is that they take these skills back to their own communities where they can impact their peers.
In addition to many other examples of community service activities, Ms. Carter has also tutored her peers as well as eighth grade students in her school district, is a care provider to a student with special needs, and serves as the National 4-H Youth Mental Health Ambassador, a role she has held since 2020.
Ms. Carter had the opportunity to visit the PMHFOS corporate office in Warrendale, PA and convey to the PMHFOS executive management team her passion for serving others and her commitment to pursuing a career where she can influence change in order to facilitate opportunities for individuals with disabilities. Ms. Carter will be attending Denison University, in Granville, Ohio, in the fall, where she will be double majoring in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics and Global Health.
This year, PMHF received 118 scholarship applications from students across 19 counties in Pennsylvania. Ms. Carter exemplifies the commitment of PMHF and the late Jamie Ellenberger to serving and improving the community.
PMHF also awarded $2,500 scholarships to Laneah Hunker from Mount Pleasant Area High School, who will be attending Waynesburg University, and Christian Cropper from Eden Christian Academy, who will be attending Hope College, based upon their service to their communities, their passion for helping others, and the leadership they have demonstrated.