Founder of ‘Mask Mission AK’ honored as one of Alaska’s Top Youth Volunteers

Published: Feb. 18, 2021 at 8:43 AM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - A pair of 49th state students have been recognized by The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards as Alaska’s Top Youth Volunteers for their philanthropic efforts here in the last frontier. Earlier this week we focused on 10-year-old Cenna Peterson-Robertson and her story. Thursday, 18-year-old Sharon Kim steps into the spotlight. Kim, a senior at West Anchorage High School here in Anchorage, is the founder of the group “Mask Mission AK.”

Back when the pandemic started Kim saw that there was a need for masks that wasn’t being met. Inspired by her father, who is a nurse, Kim reached out to friends and built this mask-making organization.

“Once I had written down a plan, I just called my entire contact list, literally one by one that day and was like, hey I have this idea, I think we can help do something with this. We shouldn’t wait around for something to happen,” says Kim.

That enthusiasm and the clear need for more masks helped inspire a group of about 20 students to join together in an effort to make a difference. Now, almost a year after all this began, Kim says “Mask Mission AK” has produced more than 1,900 masks for various parts of the community that need them.

“I never had known it would’ve grown this big, but with Mask Mission, I’m really excited to see and help and remind the public that youth are still part of this journey together,” says Kim.

At the time this group coalesced school had been canceled and so there were more free hours in the day to focus on the project, but even though online classes now take up a large portion of their time those involved with “Mask Mission AK” continue to work. In fact, they are still taking donations on their website to keep the flow of materials coming and the flow of masks outgoing.

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