Site updated 09/29/15 09:22 AM ©Upper Dauphin Sentinel
Ali previously won $1,000 in scholarship money by placing first in the Pennsylvania Eastern Division.
‘‘I was spotlighting American Heroes,’’ Ali said in a Moose news release.
‘‘I wanted the kids to know that you don’t have to do something huge – like sew a flag for your country like Betsy Ross, or stand up like Rosa Parks did – in order to make a difference today,’’ she noted.
A native of India who moved with her family to the United States in 2004, Ali gave two of her Kids Talks dressed in costume and a third dressed as herself to stress that, in her words, she ‘‘could come dressed as myself and make a difference today.
‘‘I’m not originally from this country,’’ she said. ‘‘But I have seen how loving and caring people can be here. It’s such a great country, and I wanted to show how it has impacted me and how we can give back.’’
Sponsored by the Tower City Moose Lodge and Chapter, this was the second consecutive year that Ali participated in the Youth Awareness Congress, and she intends to participate in 2016.
Ali said she plans to be a pediatric dentist, but her Youth Awareness participation has made her want to be a humanitarian as well.