A caring soul

COVID-19+was+unexpected%2C+but+it+led+Hannah+Wagganer+to+expand+her+passion+for+being+a+caring+person.

Marilynn Steuby

COVID-19 was unexpected, but it led Hannah Wagganer to expand her passion for being a caring person.

People are Hannah’s passion.

When she’s not with people at school, Hannah Wagganer, junior, takes every opportunity to be social. Her phone is filled with pictures of her friends, documenting every memory of birthdays she baked cakes for and mission trips spent bonding with members of her church youth group. But Wagganer isn’t just dedicated to loving her peers, she gives love to anyone who needs it.

She and her family are passionate about helping those in need, and often look for opportunities to volunteer, especially when she was younger. Wagganer said some of her most vivid childhood memories include “preparing sack lunches for the homeless at her friends’ house,” as well as visiting homeless shelters and playing with kids for hours.
Even now, Wagganer said she wants service to be a bigger part of her life, but due to COVID-19 restrictions last year, she couldn’t see those she cares for.
“I feel like COVID really shut me down,” Wagganer said. “It was hard not to see people [when] people are who I rely on.”

It was hard not to see people [when] people are who I rely on.”

— Hannah Wagganer

The only thing that helped her through the pandemic was getting to travel to Colorado. There, she said she found a love for the mountains and for nature itself; nature brought her peace. Hannah’s love for nature grew, and now she is set on protecting the environment.
“I would love to move to the coast, or to the mountains,” Wagganer said. “[I want to] find ways to help preserve areas and get rid of waste people have left.”
The pandemic might have stopped Wagganer from pursuing helping those in need, but being on her own led her to find a new passion in caring for nature in the same way she cares for people.