Palmer Trinity senior Kelly Malloy started a school club to help Miami Children’s Hospital. The club has a variety of fundraisers for the hospital, including Shed Your Threads days. On those days, students pay a fee that allows them to wear clothes that day other than their school uniforms.
“The money goes for medical supplies or anything the hospital sees fit,”Malloy says.
She has organized bake sales and sold glow-in-the-dark bracelets to raise money. The club also conducts collection drives for the holidays – toy drives and gift-wrap drives.
“Around Thanksgiving, we have turkey hand drives,” she says. “We’ll have our cub members trace their hands and decorate them with glitter. We donate them and they put them up in the rooms. They put them on the walls.”
For Christmas they have a toy drive and usually collect about 100 toys.
“Some kids will bring more than one,” she says.
Malloy says kids from around the world get treatment at Miami Children’s. The toys mostly go to children in the residential program whose families are financially strapped. Aside from the holiday gifts, students also donate toys, bubble and Crayola markers and supplies that are given to cancer patients after their first round of chemotherapy.
“We go down a few times a year for art therapy and donate those,” Malloy says.
Malloy came up with the idea for the club in ninth grade, but it officially started when she was in 10th grade.
“During ninth grade I had been a patient in Miami Children’s,” she says. “I had to undergo a couple of operations.”
Her sister also spent time at the hospital in the cardiology unit. When Malloy goes to college, her sister will take over the club, which has about 60 members.
Malloy is also president of Palmer’s Center for Writing. The students who staff the center help fellow students with writing projects.
“They can bring a paper to us and we will help them zero in on what they need to focus on,” she says.
Students involved in the center go to classrooms to talk about the benefits of using the center. Malloy likes to write essays, poems, short stories.
“I like to journal,” she says. “I think it’s an outlet for anger, sorrow or frustration. It’s my way of organizing how I feel.”
Malloy is captain of the varsity softball team. She’s been on the team since she was in the seventh grade. She plays shortstop and she’s a power hitter.
She is a member of the Spanish Honor Society, the National Honor Society and secretary of the Model UN team.
“Last year we went to FIU; it was like an actual model UN session,” she says. “It was cool to be a part of that.”
Outside of school, Malloy takes piano and singing lessons at the School of Rock.
“It’s a hobby, I play a bunch of instruments,” she says. “Ukulele, guitar, harmonica and piano. I write my own songs and I write music.”
Malloy applied to Vanderbilt and has already been accepted to Tulane. She is considering both English and Engineering as her major.
“If I have an engineering and English background, there is nothing I wouldn’t be able to do,” she says.
Eventually she would like to become a patent attorney and practice law with her father.
—By Linda Rodriguez Bernfeld