Making a Difference: Cameron Boyle

South Middle School (SMS) student Cameron Boyle felt his heart drop to the pit of his stomach as he watched 130 mph wind tear the city of Houston apart piece by piece. Only a few days after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, Boyle approached his principal Doug Barry to discuss raising money to donate to the families affected by the hurricanes.

South Middle School 7th grader Cameron Boyle.

South Middle School 7th grader Cameron Boyle.

Inspired by J.J. Watt’s Hurricane Relief Fund, Boyle’s idea to help those in need started as a friendly competition between West Des Moines and Waukee Community School District.

“My dad is a principal at West Des Moines Community School District, so he contacted the Valley High School principal and got them involved. From there it just got bigger and bigger,” Boyle said. “It was important for me to help someone who lost their home, clothes and needed food and money.”

Johnston Community School District, Urbandale Community School District and Dowling Catholic High School joined in the fundraising efforts soon after.

Boyle was responsible for identifying the Red Cross as the recipient of the funds raised and collecting and verifying donations from SMS students and staff.

“We don’t have totals yet, but it is looking like nearly $3,000 will be raised for this cause,” Barry said. “I’m amazed by how much an idea from a single South Middle School student was able to grow and help others in need.”

This is not Boyle’s first time leading the way to improvement. As a 7th grade ambassador, he spends his mornings with his advisory planning assemblies and activities to improve the South Middle School.

Through this experience, Boyle learned that anyone can stand up and fix a problem. He encourages other to find a way to make a difference.