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Ruffsdale teen has raised more than $10,000 for children's hospital, plans to raise more Saturday

Jacob Tierney
| Thursday, Feb. 1, 2018, 4:33 p.m.
Margo Covalesky, 14, of Ruffsdale has raised more than $10,000 for charity through popcorn sales and other events. She will hold a chocolate-themed fundraiser at Sharp Image salon Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018.
Margo Covalesky, 14, of Ruffsdale has raised more than $10,000 for charity through popcorn sales and other events. She will hold a chocolate-themed fundraiser at Sharp Image salon Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018.

Margo Covalesky has been raising money for charity since she was 10. Now 14, she is a seasoned pro.

The Ruffsdale resident has raised more than $10,000 for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Her most recent fundraiser, All About Chocolate, was Saturday at Sharp Image Hair Design and Day Spa in Hempfield.

“I don't really honestly know what started it,” she said. “I guess I was just so bored from not really doing anything with my summers.”

Four years ago, Margo spent nearly every day over a summer with her grandparents. Susan Covalesky wanted her granddaughter to come up with a list of ways to occupy herself.

“I was thinking Idlewild Park and stuff like that,” Susan Covalesky said.

Margo took some time to think about it and came back with a surprising suggestion — a doll beauty pageant. Entrants paid $5 each to enter their dolls into the competition. Between entry fees and other donations, Margo raised about $750 for the homeless.

That was the first of many creative ideas. Margo has held dance parties, costume contests and popcorn sales to raise money.

Most of the fundraisers benefit St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

Though at first she was just looking for something to do, Margo's mission has become personal.

A close friend recently died of cancer, and she hopes that her money can help others in a similar situation survive.

“He's basically my motivation, to keep him alive in my heart,” she said.

At the All About Chocolate event, homemade fudge and candy were sold, a gift basket was raffled, and the spa offered chair and hand massages to donors.

“We're opening our doors to people who want to come and help to raise money for St. Jude's,” Sharp Image owner Judy Rosatti said.

Susan Covalesky works at the salon, and Rosatti said she's always happy to help Margo.

“She's a very unique young lady because she is a giver,” Rosatti said. “I think if the world had more givers like her it would be a much better place.”

Jacob Tierney is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-836-6646, or via Twitter @Soolseem.

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