Caroline Correia’s involvement with the community led to her being nominated for and awarded with a Connecting With Kids Community Foundation Award. Since moving to Minnesota from Connecticut in 2012, Correia has made her transition easier by immersing herself in the community, joining organizations, volunteering and working alongside other like-minded individuals. Our state could only benefit from more people like her.
“The spirit of generosity and community that is ever present throughout the state is astounding to me. I have met the most giving, kind and committed people here. You explain where a need is and people consistently respond with time and resources. Every single time,” Correia says.
Since simply volunteering wasn’t enough for her, in January of 2018, Correia worked to co-found the meal fund for Edina Public Schools. This fund raises money to buy lunch for children from families that suddenly experience a drastic income change due to job loss or illness. Correia made it her mission to ensure every child had access to meals every day no matter what was going on at home. This fund eased the minds of many parents and guardians who no longer had to add paying for their child’s lunch to their list of worries.
“This [past] school year, we had over 500 requests for funds to pay for meals at school and were able to honor all of them. Paying off lunch costs is only a small part of easing larger burdens on fellow community members, but it matters to students and families,” Correia says.
Correia is also involved as a puppeteer for Pacer, on the board of Kipp Minnesota and The Edina Community Foundation as well as the Edina Public Schools’ legislative action committee, along with being a mother of two boys, Mathias, 16 and Liam, 13.
“I am always eager to find nonprofits doing great work where I can contribute my time and add value to their missions. Being part of a team that can make small positive changes in the world is an integral part of who I am and what makes me tick,” Correia says.
Part of working in the community means Correia has made a lot of friends. One of them is Julie Greene, who also happens to be the person who nominated Correia for the award.
Greene and Correia met while their sons were playing basketball together and instantly bonded over their love of helping others within the community to make people stronger and more connected as a whole. They are also both writers. They’ve worked on several projects together and continue to be great partners.
“Caroline is a fierce advocate for those in need, especially children,” Greene says.
Greene nominated her because she saw the passion and commitment behind Correia’s projects. She recognizes how selfless Correia is and appreciates how she wants everyone in the community to be respected and cared for. Her methods are always accompanied by the utmost respect for others.
“Edina has a small town feel, with a lot of passionate residents, and when we work together to channel all of that zest, some amazing things happen,” Correia says.
Each year since 2008, the Edina Community Foundation holds a leadership breakfast to honor a group of awardees who are nominated by community members. It's a time to highlight their contributions and celebrate the strength of our community through volunteerism.