WEST UNION, W.Va. — A handful of students at Doddridge County High School are making a difference and the nationally known publication Reader’s Digest wants everybody to know about it.

The students are members of the “BARK Club.” It’s an acronym stands for Bulldogs Acts of Random Kindness. Reader’s Digest has selected the club as a finalists in its “Nicest Places in America” campaign.

“West Virginia had a lot of great nominations, but we were really impressed with how these kids go out of their way to make school a friendlier place,” said Jeremy Greenfield, senior editor for the publication.

It’s an annual contest to find the friendliest places, but Greenfield said this year they opened it up a little wider and have picked a nominee in every state.

“We want people to know there are nice places in their backyard regardless of what they see on the news or social media,” he said.

The BARK Club only involves about 15 to 20 students at Doddridge County who do most of the work, but they engage the entire student body to get involved in those random acts of kindness. They show up periodically at the school board meeting with doughnuts. Greenfield said equally impressive was an effort to recognize the birthday of every single student in the school. He added, the kindness generated is not only heart warming, it’s also creative.

“When a rival basketball team came to play, one of the students at their high school had been stricken with cancer,” he explained on MetroNews “Talkline.” “They decided to get everyone in their high school to sign a poster to that kid and make a donation to the family to help deal with the expenses.”

The work of the BARK Club and of the 49 other finalists is in the wheelhouse of Reader’s Digest according to Greenfield.

“One of the things we’ve done for 100 years is take the voice of everyday Americans and bring it to our audience,” he said. “A lot of cases they are telling uplifting stories that make us feel good.”

One of those stories is going to wind up on the cover of Reader’s Digest. Part of it will be decided by a popular vote on the Reader’s Digest website. You can click here to vote once a day.

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