Blair Hornstine is a 15-year-old student at Moorestown High School. Five years ago, Blair co-founded a new service organization in the Moorestown Public Schools known as the Moorestown Alliance for Goodwill and Interest in the Community (MAGIC). MAGIC provides social support and hope to the elderly, school children, disabled, and underprivileged. MAGIC’s primary efforts are directed to Camden, New Jersey, an urban community that has been named the “most distressed” municipality in New Jersey and the second “most dangerous” city in America.
For the past few years, Blair has been moving force behind MAGIC’s community service activities. In order to expand student, parent, faculty, and community participation, Blair’s projects are wide and varied. Under Blair’s leadership in the Fall of 1999, MAGIC joined forces with community leaders in Camden, the Centreville Caring and Safe Environment Association, Juvenile Justice Commission, The Camden Learning Collaborative, and Together As One, to reclaim a neglected community center and transform it into a library for neighborhood children. The library is adorned with new carpet and furniture. The exterior of the center was painted, flower boxes were made, and mums were planted. Additionally, a violence prevention read-a-thon was held. Blair was instrumental in having computers donated for Internet access. More than 100 volunteers participated in this event on Make A Difference Day.
Blair is also co-founder of the Tri-County Student Food Drive. Over the past three years, 75 elementary, middle, and high schools have joined MAGIC’s efforts to collect necessary good staples and to raise public awareness of hunger. An estimated 20,000 students have donated approximately 25,000 pounds of food to the Food Bank of South Jersey.
Over the past two summers, Blair mobilized a community service project at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, which serves the Hispanic community in Camden. The improvements included painting both the interior and exterior of the church, restoring the brick steps, and installing new bathroom fixtures. Fifty church parishioners and MAGIC members were involved.
Each autumn for the past four years, Blair has organized a beautification and revitalization program in cooperation with the Cooper Landing Civic Association. Since its inception, new planters with mums and cale have been placed in front of homes over a 10-block radius. In addition, Blair founded the Tri-County Prom Dress Drive. She contacted all high schools in three counties for assistance in collecting prom dressed and accessories for distribution to young women who would like to attend formal affairs but are financially unable to do so. This spring, Blair distributed approximately 180 dresses to students in the tri-county area.
Blair has raised money for The Smile Train, an international nonprofit organization that is committed to eradicating the problem of cleft lips and palates. Blair donated sufficient money to fund a cleft operation for a needy child.