Teen to raise funds for children’s hospital

MINERAL WELLS – A local teen is raising money through her church to help sick children at West Virginia University Children’s Hospital.

Parkersburg South High School junior Rebecca Rhodes, 16, has organized a gospel sing that will be held at 7 p.m. today at Mineral Wells Baptist Church. The sing will be held for a love offering and proceeds from the event will go to the children’s hospital in Morgantown.

“The whole thing was her idea,” said Shannon Rhodes, Rebecca’s mother.

She said Rebecca came up with the idea and got permission from the pastor and elders of the church. Shannon said once the event was approved, the whole church came together and offered its help.

The Ray Family and the Putnam family will be performing as well as Rebecca, who plays the fiddle.

“I started playing when I was 4 years old,” she said.

She said she plays the fiddle during special occasions at church as well as participates in a praise group that meets at the church.

The fiddle also happens to be Rebecca’s talent that she does for pageants, which is what inspired her to raise money for the hospital.

Rebecca is raising the money as part of her duties as Miss Discovery Trail’s Outstanding Teen, a pageant title she earned in Doddridge County in February.

The pageant is part of the Miss West Virginia Scholarship Organization, which includes several pageants. Many of the pageant winners from across the state are planning events to raise funds for the hospital, which is a supporter of the scholarship program.

Rebecca said that it is a group project to raise the money.

“We’re all coming up with events to donate to the hospital,” she said.

She said that the teens will collect the money individually and then all of the money will be sent to the hospital together.

“I am so excited to be a part of this program,” she said.

She said it’s special because it helps people in her own community, as well as around the state.

Rebecca will go on to compete in the Miss West Virginia Outstanding Teen pageant in July and says that she will continue to do pageants in the future. She said a big reason she does pageants is for the scholarships, but she also pointed out that pageants also encourage and teach teens how to have confidence.

“I will definitely keep on trying to do bigger and better things,” she said.

As for her future and where she might use those scholarships she earns, Rebecca said she is considering West Virginia University, but isn’t sure yet. She thinks she would like to go into the medical field, specifically to be an orthodonist.

She said she isn’t sure where the future will take her, but for now she will be involved in the medical field by helping children in need of medical treatment.

“I hope that as many people can come as we can get,” she said. “The proceeds are going to a great cause.”