Headshot Photo of Kayla Abramowitz
2016 Award Recipient


Project Kayla Cares 4 Kids

Location North Palm Beach, FL

Issue Area Health | Mental Health & Emotional Support

Kayla knew from a young age what it was like to spend countless hours in hospitals after being diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, Juvenile Arthritis, and Eosinophilic Colitis. During a particularly difficult two-week hospital stay, she discovered the lack of recreational activities in place to offset the frustration, pain, and boredom hospital patients with chronic illnesses often experience. This inspired Kayla to launch Kayla Cares 4 Kids, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that collects and donates entertainment and educational items to children’s hospitals and Ronald McDonald Houses nationwide. With many medical facilities relying on donations of books and movies for their patients and families, children have limited access to age-appropriate material during their stays.

Through Kayla’s efforts, Kayla Cares 4 Kids helped raise the spirit of young patients by identifying what they need to stay engaged and motivated during their recovery process. For her passion for transforming patients’ lives, Kayla was named one of 10 Prudential Spirit of Community Award winners nationwide; the 2016 National Christopher Reeve Service Award winner; and the”2015 National Young Entrepreneur of the Year” by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Young Entrepreneurs Academy. With the help of 13 ambassadors in 11 states, collection boxes and social media campaign, Kayla Cares 4 Kids has donated more than 11,000 items to approximately 100 facilities in all 50 states.

The smiles on the kids' faces and the reactions I get from them and the staff, makes me know that I'm making a lasting difference.

Kayla Abramowitz
“It is never too late, too early, or too often TO GIVE BACK AND MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE”
Helen Diller