Eau Claire (WQOW) - WQOW News 18, along with the Marshfield Clinic, is recognizing members of our community who make a difference in the lives of others with the Jefferson Awards for Public Service. The first recipient is Anthony DaBruzzi nominated by his parents, who say the teen serves as an inspiration to his community for his dedication to making a difference.
At a young age Anthony DaBruzzi began volunteering as a requirement, it was an obligation that quickly turned into a habit. "It developed into so much more as I became passionate about the organizations I was working with," says Anthony.
The Cumberland teen says he works with organizations that strive to make a difference in the community. Organizations like the Barron County Teen Court Restorative Justice Program. "The program," explained Anthony, "generally for first-time offenders, underage, is about an opportunity to give them the chance to make things right again without going through the circuit court system and just paying a fine." Since 2008 Anthony has been the president of the Cumberland chapter, and serves as a panelist, which is similar to the role of an attorney in the circuit court system. "It's an incredible feeling just to know that you've helped others, you've impacted them," says Anthony. "And they're working to change their lives and serve as a role model themselves, to others."
Habitat for Humanity, after school tutoring, food drives and restoring a local playground are just a few of the other places and organizations where Anthony volunteers his time. "And then he has a part time job," adds Trina Woiak, a coordinator with the Teen Court program. "He's always balancing all sorts of stuff."
"It just feels natural, it's something I want to make time for," continues Anthony. "Sometimes I put things aside to be in the community because that's where I want to be."