The life of Drake Durkee tragically ended on June 10, 2015, at age 11, during a whitewater rafting tour in Buena Vista, Colo. Drake excelled at life. He was a son, a brother to three, a student, a leader, an athlete, a friend, a football fan and a boy of faith. His spirited personality and work ethic inspired everyone around him. He had courage, strength and leadership abilities beyond his years.
The Drake Durkee Foundation celebrates his life by empowering children to connect through kindness and compassion. Going out of his way to talk to the kid who sat alone at lunch or stepping in when someone needed strength, Drake inspired those around to stop and take notice of those who are in need of a connection.
This is reflected in the foundation’s mission statement:
To inspire, educate and motivate children to realize the impact of intentional acts of kindness and to empower kids to proactively create an environment of inclusiveness for all children
The foundation focuses on real need cases and accepts requests from local groups in need of various help. Examples include:
• Provided funds to Maple Grove Elementary/Jeffco Schools to send sixth graders to Outdoor Lab
• Funded a local school’s music program to help with the costs and keep it running
• Sponsored the Ralston House Hero’s Party, to recognize the bravery of children affected by abuse
• Created and continues to recognize outstanding kids and athletes in the community with awards
• Hosts an annual Kindness Day every year on June 10 to spread kindness and inspire others to pay it forward
• Provided Foothills Elementary and Jeffco Eats with funds to provide needy school kids with food packages and backpacks for lunches and meal
• Funded a playroom waiting area for children in need of services from the Ralston House
• Instituted a “Seeds of Kindness” challenge for area elementary schools; this program encourages students to come up with ways to spread kindness in their community and schools, as winning submissions are awarded $100 to carry out their idea
• Donated to the Golden Backpack Program; the funds were used to provide over 11,000 meals to Golden area children and families
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