Every spring the Right to Life of Michigan Educational Fund hosts its Outstanding Prolife Youth Award to recognize high school seniors for their involvement in the prolife movement. This year’s winners are wonderful examples the upcoming generation’s passion for life and display a bright future for the prolife movement in Michigan.
2021 Youth Award Winner: Josephine Gusa, Huron County Right to Life
Josephine has been active in the prolife movement to over eight years. Beginning with handing out baby bottles at local churches for the annual Baby Bottle Boomerang Fundraiser and attending Sanctity of Human Life services, her commitment to life has steadily grown stronger over the years. She has been a consistent participant at Huron Right to Life monthly meetings, outreach events, and has volunteered at their annual fundraiser dinner five times. In 2019, Josephine served on the sidewalks outside of abortion clinics in Flint and with 40 Days for Life. She has attended both the Michigan march for Life and the March for Life in Washington, D.C.
From Josephine’s essay:
Addressing issues such as abortion and euthanasia can be difficult and uncomfortable. Trying to explain that killing people is wrong without making someone feel defensive is challenging. We Don’t want being prolife to be associated with negative emotions because that will make others reluctant to want to join our movement. I think that the best way for our generation to address this issue is through a culture change.
Runner Up: Megan Chinavare, Caledonia/Middleville Right to Life
Megan’s involvement with the prolife movement shifted into high gear four years ago when she founded the prolife student group at Thornapple Kellogg High School. In her capacity as the group’s president, she was a constant voice for life in her school and church where she spoke at multiple prolife youth and sanctity of life events; she even assisted in the founding of another prolife student group in Forest Hills. Megan has been a consistent attendee and volunteer at various Caledonia/Middleville Right to Life meetings, events, fundraisers, marches, and rallies. She will be continuing her prolife outreach at Franciscan University where she will be pursuing degrees in English and human life studies.
From Megan’s essay:
I have become acutely aware of the disposable nature of our society; of the culture of death that is suffocating. The intricacy of life has become simple. The complexity of life has become manageable. The miracle of life has become optional. Life has been transformed into something to be feared, dreaded. Women are taught that pregnancy is a limit to their dreams rather than something that enhances their power. Men are taught that they have no voice in whether their child lives or dies. Children are taught that their life is conditional.”
Honorable Mention: Cecilia Smith, North Kent Right to Life
Cecilia Smith has been involved with North Kent Right to Life for more than a decade where she has attended events and volunteered at their annual Focus on Life Dinner. She also attended the Leadership for Life Base Camp at Life International where she was trained in prolife apologetics and prayed on the sidewalk outside of Grand Rapid’s abortion facility. She has also participated in the 40 Days for Life Campaign outside of that same abortion facility. Cecilia has also volunteered at the Help Pregnancy Crisis Aid center.
From Cecilia’s essay:
The more prolife supporters, the better because they will be the ones choosing not to have abortion. They will be the ones reaching out to others who may be considering an abortion and informing mothers of the alternatives, like adoption. If my generation can offer assistance to women who are contemplating an abortion, educate individuals on the horrors of abortion, and actively fight to stop it; this will show the strength of the prolife movement and will start to spread positive prolife messages everywhere.