BELLBROOK — A hobby has made Apurva Makote a national sensation — literally.
The 10-year-old Bellbrook girl was the winner of the American Heart Association’s Jump Rope for Heart T-Shirt Design contest. Her design will appear on the 2014-2015 Jump Rope for Heart T-shirt that will be distributed in schools all over the country.
The soon-to-be sixth-grader loves to draw and it’s her knack for illustrating clear and simple messages that made coming up with a picture for her entry a no-brainer.
“I knew that the American Heart Association, it helps people all over the world,” Makote said. “I drew the person jumping rope on the world. My message through this design is that a simple jump rope exercise can be done in any part of the world and keeps (the) heart healthy.”
That effective message received the most votes locally and was chosen by judges at the national AHA headquarters as the overall winner. In addition to having her work displayed on the T-shirt, Makote also received a $150 Nike gift card.
“I think it’s really amazing how everybody will be getting the T-shirts with my design on it,” Makote said. “I never really thought my drawing would make it so far, but now I feel great that other people are enjoying it. I was like ‘wow.’ “
Her friends and teachers were also amazed and excited she won, as were Makote’s parents, Amala and Raj.
“We are very proud of our daughter,” Amala Makote said.
The excitement wasn’t limited to friends and family.
“I am so happy for Apurva, physical education teacher Mrs. Sasha Taylor, art teacher Mrs. Bonita Taggart and Bell Creek Intermediate School for winning the contest,” said Kerry Boldish, youth market director for the American Heart Association. “I personally know how much this means to them and how hard they worked towards winning the contest.”
Makote has been actively involved with Jump Rope for Heart for several years and likes to emphasize the importance of exercise for better health.
“Keeping a heart in good condition is a worldwide problem,” Apurva said. “Serving this need is quite inspiring to me. I designed this logo to promote healthy exercise habits all over the world.”
The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – America’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke.