Two teens received the Cook County Sheriff's Youth Service Medal of Honor Monday night.
sophomore Kathryn McAuliffe and her sister, senior Meghan McAuliffe, were among more than 200 high school students who were recognized at a ceremony at the UIC Forum in Chicago.
"We are very fortunate living here in Burr Ridge. We have so many opportunities that other people don't have," said Meghan, who has volunteered more than 500 hours to charitable causes such as Habitat for Humanity.
The teen said the reason she has chosen to devote her free time to helping others is because she has grown up in an environment where she has been taught that community service is important.
"I love that feeling of knowing that I can help someone with my gifts and talents," said Meghan.
Her younger sister, Kathryn, also received an award Monday night, having volunteered about 200 hours to community service projects through her church group. Both teens are very involved in service projects through their church, in Western Springs, and Kathryn is a volunteer volleyball coach.
"It was a really great honor to be recognized for [volunteering,]" said Kathryn, who said she also was happy to see her sister recognized Monday night.
The Cook County Sheriff's Youth Service Medal of Honor program was established to recognize Cook County students who have volunteered 100 or more hours in a year. Together, the students at Monday's ceremony had served more than 36,000 hours of community service to a variety of agencies and organizations throughout Cook County.