The two, as creator Nick Cannon‘s helpers, surprised Miranda Fuentes and Rocio Ortega, as well as Denzel Thompson, with grants for their organization and given an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet and connect with a celebrity who shares a similar passion for their cause.
“I’m humbled by the truly inspiring and tremendous work these HALO honorees are doing in their communities,” Nick shared in a statement. “It’s my goal to continue the conversations about issues that impact teens today, and empower young people to take action and make a difference in the world.
TeenNick HALO Awards will broadcast live from the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles, on Sunday, November 17th @ 8PM ET/PT On Nick at Nite. Learn more about the honorees inside…
Miranda Fuentes, 16, Pembroke Pines, Fla. (paired with Shay Mitchell) – Inspired by her younger brother Lucas who has autism, Miranda Fuentes has spent the past five years volunteering with Surfers for Autism. The Florida-based organization uses surfing as hydrotherapy, which helps the kids open up and express themselves in a calming environment. The organization also helps eliminate the social stigma around autism and gives the participants an opportunity to impress their families with their new capabilities.
Rocio Ortega, 19, Los Angeles. (paired with Chris Paul) – A first-generation Mexican American, Rocio Ortega developed a passion for advocating education as a way to help young women become independent and successful. She works extensively with Global Girl Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering girls from under-served communities around the world through new media leadership training, and Girl Up, a campaign of the United Nations Foundation.
Denzel Thompson, 19, Philadelphia, Pa. (paired with Queen Latifah) – Denzel Thompson is a co-founder of Philadelphia Urban Creators (PUC), a youth led organization that grows organic food and revitalizes blighted landscapes into models of urban sustainability from the ground up, after battling obesity and self-esteem issues as a kid. In addition to organizing homegrown affordable farmers markets for the neighborhood, Thompson conducts educational workshops for youth in his community so they can begin to expand the Urban Creator mission throughout Philadelphia and eventually the world.