Shiloh Ellis has a passion for lifting, whether it’s a 100-pound barbell or helping others who face difficult circumstances.
A fourth-grader at Sacred Hearts School in Bradford, Shiloh has been participating in workouts at a local CrossFit gym in Salem, N.H., pushing the limits of his 4-foot, 4-inch, 72-pound frame several times a week. He also lifts weights in his basement.
But while the 10-year-old Groveland boy’s physical abilities are remarkable on their own, the strength of his heart is more impressive.
For the past two years, Shiloh has been on a crusade, raising more than $10,000 for Kettlebells4kids, a Foxborough-based organization which seeks to educate the public about the issue of childhood homelessness that affects 2.5 million children nationwide.
After raising only $2,100 in Massachusetts in 2014, Kettlebells4kids expanded in 2015. That year, more than 1,000 CrossFit athletes from 63 gyms — or “boxes” as they are known — in 23 states raised almost $100,000, with Shiloh raising about $6,500 on his own.
Through the power of social media, Shiloh formed Team Dream Big last year and has rounded up a squad of more than a dozen like-minded kids from California, Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Louisiana, Oregon, Pennsylvania and South Carolina to help less fortunate children.
Team Dream Big has raised more than $8,000 this year alone, with Shiloh raising more than $4,000 so far. He said his goal is to raise $10,000 in 2016 — the same goal as the rest of his teammates combined.