Ryleigh Napier of Leslie County shows off some of the 50 winter coats donated in her Rogers Scholars community service project.

2018 Rogers Scholar Ryleigh Napier of Leslie County is putting service into action by providing winter coats to children and families in her community.

Napier, a graduate of The Center for Rural Development’s Rogers Scholars program, organized a community coat drive for her Rogers Scholars community service project.

“This project showed me how helping others really makes a difference,” said Napier, a junior at Leslie County High School. “It allowed me to be a part of my community and serve others.”

During the month of December, Napier set up drop-off centers at Rockhouse Baptist Church, Leslie County Extension Office, and Leslie County High School where students and community members could donate winter coats of all sizes for the community service project.

She collected 50 coats and delivered them to needy families in partnership with Rockhouse Baptist Church’s Christmas Blessings dinner project. Any children’s coats that were left over after the distribution were donated to students at two local elementary schools.

“Being able to work with my church, school, and community, collecting coats, and working with people in my community to find kids who I could help was priceless,” Napier said.

Napier said she was overjoyed when she received a message from someone close to the project who wrote, “I saw several kids that had their coats on to keep them warm on this cold morning.”

She expressed appreciation to her church family, fellow students, and community for helping with the coat drive. “I just want to thank everyone who had a hand in the success of this project,” Napier said.

Napier is the daughter of Mike and Donna Napier of Wooten.