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Clearwater sisters head to D.C. for nonprofit boot camp

Ellen, 17, left, and Adrienne Nadeau, 24, of Clearwater hope to see some of the inauguration festivities during their trip.

ATOYIA DEANS | Times

Ellen, 17, left, and Adrienne Nadeau, 24, of Clearwater hope to see some of the inauguration festivities during their trip.

CLEARWATER — Two sisters from Clearwater are going to Washington, D.C., this week, but not for the inauguration.

They're among 20 people younger than 25 from throughout the nation to be awarded $250 each from Do Something Inc., a New York-based nonprofit that encourages youth to do public service.

As part of the award, Adrienne and Ellen Nadeau will participate in the Do Something Social Action Boot Camp, which will be held Monday in Washington.

"There is so much time and energy put into these projects," said Adrienne Nadeau, who graduated from the University of Tampa with a bachelor's degree in creative writing. "It's so exciting to see someone think that we are doing something special."

The daylong training brings youth leaders and organizers from all over the country. They will learn about things like how to writing a not-for-profit business plan and how to build a successful Web site for less than $10.

Even though they won't be there for the inauguration, the sisters plan to stay an extra day to get a peek at some of the festivities.

• • •

Adrienne Nadeau, 24, has always loved poetry.

A spoken word poet, she uses the power of words to help her through tough times and to share her joys with the world. Knowing how cathartic the poetry process is, Nadeau formed a small nonprofit so that she can spread the love to underprivileged children.

Adrienne Nadeau named her nonprofit the Warrior Woman Inc. It is a charitable organization that brings Tampa Bay artists together to host writing workshops.

Her goal is to bring workshops to 36 teen programs and more than 1,500 teens by teaming up with Girls Inc. and the YWCA.

Younger sister Ellen Nadeau, 17, also loves poetry but she turned her efforts to the Internet and the safety of teenagers after doing a class project on child kidnapping.

She helped form a group called Internet Safety 411 at Palm Harbor University High School that was specially trained by the FBI to help teens spot Internet predators.

The group also was trained on how to deal with cyber bullying. The group's members now speak to teens throughout the county about the issue.

Ellen Nadeau has completed her coursework at Palm Harbor University High and will spend the next 2 1/2 months interning at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Washington, D.C. She will continue to work with Internet Safety 411 to try to help youths remain safe while using the Internet.

• • •

The Clearwater women and the other grant winners will use their grants to further their organizations' causes.

"Young people possess the energy, creativity and motivation to rock the world," Nancy Lublin, chief executive officer of Do Something Inc., said in a written statement. "The Youth 2 Youth Grants will help them do it!"

The Clearwater sisters are grateful for the grants and they're looking forward to being in Washington and working together.

"For both of us, this is about taking something you love and making a job out of it," Ellen Nadeau said. "We are going to split up and go to different workshops and come together on breaks and share with each other what we learned. It's pretty exciting."

Demorris A. Lee can be reached at 445-4174 or dalee@sptimes.com.

To learn more

• For more on the awards and Do Something Inc., visit www.dosomething.org

• For more on Adrienne Nadeau's nonprofit, visit www.myspace.com/thewarrior womaninc.

• For more on Ellen Nadeau's nonprofit, visit www.myspace.com/internetsafety411.

Clearwater sisters head to D.C. for nonprofit boot camp 01/17/09 [Last modified: Monday, January 19, 2009 3:20pm]
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