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Young Man Attributes Philanthropy Award to Video

One man proves it doesn't have to come in the way of dollars and cents.
PEORIA - Philanthropy comes in all shapes and sizes and one local man is showing that you don't have to have a lot to give a lot.

Right before he went off to college, Nigel Turk’s father asked him to make a video for CASA.

"He said, hey, casa needs a video. All right, what's CASA?"

Turk is 20-years-old, and likes creating videos. So he created one for Peoria's Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for children. The organization needed a way to document its work for a big fundraising event last year. Turk soon learned how the organization creates a positive change.

"Make sure the child's voice is heard and whatever court situation, they're a friend to them and they speed the process along so that they can get a stable home sooner."

He said the goal was to get donors to shell out some cash for the cause.

"We have all of these volunteers. All of these children, we have this much money. We just need you. Do you have what it takes, can you make this happen?"

The video is just one of many ways this young man helps his community. In high school he volunteered every week at a crisis nursery. This year, his efforts earned him a nomination for the 2013 National Philanthropy Day Awards luncheon. Turk took home one of the trophies for Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy ages 18 to 23.

"Apparently at CASAblanca last year my video helped them sponsor 52 children," Turk said.

"Now they're using it for most of Central Illinois CASA stuff."

He never thought a simple project for one event could make such an impact.

Turk said his work with the organization left him inspired. He is now a sophomore at the University of Illinois studying psychology. He said he wants to work with teens.

View the entire video here.
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