Palmetto High School incoming senior Alexis Lopez has initiated several community service projects.
“My family is from Bolivia,” she says. “There are a lot of poor children on the street without shoes, so I did a drive and donated them to an orphanage.”
She collected 30-40 pairs of shoes for girls. She put them into a suitcase to take them to the orphanage the next time they went to visit.
Her family usually visits Bolivia two-three times a year but the COVID situation means they haven’t been able to go this year.
With the start of the quarantine, Lopez started a new project, making handmade soaps, selling them on Instagram for $3 each and donating the profits to Farm Share. Lopez learned how to make the soaps in seventh grade and made them for a while but stopped because a couple of kids made fun of her for doing that.
“I’ve taken it up again and so far, over $400,” she says. “Hopefully in the future, more.”
She makes the soaps out of glycerin and adds scents such strawberry, vanilla, lavender, sandalwood, and bubble gum. She adds alcohol to make them anti-bacterial.
“I usually sell two or three at a time,” she says. “The most I’ve had someone buy is 10 at a time.”
She donates to the Farm Share because of all the people who need food assistance due to the coronavirus.
“I know there has been trouble getting food from place to place so I wanted to make sure there was money for feeding families,” she says.
During the holidays Lopez usually runs a toy collection drive for the Chapman Partnership for the Homeless in Homestead and delivers the toys.
“The last time, it was 40-50 toys,” she says.
In April, Lopez won the Junior of the Year Award. She is involved in school as the Class of 2021 Vice President. Her junior year she was the Junior Class Secretary. Before that, she was a Cabinet member.
Lopez is a member of the Social Science Honor Society and competed in History Bowl.
“We’re the school with the most teams,” she says.
Her team had a lot of changes through the year so they didn’t get enough points to go to the district competition. But the experience was worthwhile so she plans to compete again – depending on whether the coronavirus situation allows for competitions.
Lopez tutored students in math and history for Tutoring for Tomorrow, the student run tutoring organization.
“If it wasn’t for COVID I would still be tutoring,” she says.
Tutoring for Tomorrow tutors are paid, but give at least half their profits to the organization, which is then donated to charities and school clubs. Lopez donated back all her money even before she joined the organization’s board as the Community Outreach Chair.
Lopez was a member of the community service organization, Key Club and the Spanish National Honor Society.
She hopes that her class is able to participate in a senior year. She feels bad for last years’ seniors who missed prom and other important events.
For college, Lopez’s list includes Duke, the University of North Carolina, the University of Miami, Florida State and the University of Florida. She wants to take a pre-med track or pre-med major or major in biology. Her goal is to be an anesthesiologist or an ophthalmologist.
Lopez played for the Palmetto softball team for two years and she coached 12-14 years olds for her then travel team, Heartbreakers Softball.
Linda Rodriguez Bernfeld