MaryMargaret O’Neill, 13, of Ijamsville, experienced the thrill of a lifetime, when she appeared as a guest on the new Ricki Lake show Sept. 20.
MaryMargaret, a ninth-grader at Saint John’s Catholic Prep high school in Frederick, is the founder of the nonprofit “Kids Are Heroes,” an organization that recognizes community service in children from the county and around the country. She started a website KidsAreHeroes.com in 2008, with her father, Gabe O’Neill, for children who volunteer and make a difference to share their experiences of giving back to their communities. They now have 300 children from 10 countries who volunteer in their communities.
To bring her nonprofit to the global stage, MaryMargaret and her dad put together a taped public service announcement pitching their organization to the Ricki Lake show. The show’s producers liked the idea and invited MaryMargaret to be on the show. She also brought along 8-year-old Jonas Corona of California, who volunteers his time helping the homeless.
“The taping was awesome,” said Gabe O’Neill. “Everybody at the show was so wonderful and everybody was really authentic.”
O’Neill said the show also included other people who volunteer in their communities.
“It was absolutely amazing,” he said