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10-year-old starts organization to promote ‘being a gentleman’

When 10-year-old ADE Seth Feliciano speaks, it’s easy to think of him as an old soul. His first name – spelled with all capital letters and pronounced “a-DAY” – means “king.” The name exemplifies ADE’s focus on leading others with integrity and purpose.

Katrina Michele Gregory, ADE’s mother, is the founder of the Butterfly Outreach.

“Butterfly Outreach is a nonprofit organization I created to uplift women and girls ages 2 – 99,” she said.

The organization promotes self-worth and other values, such as the difference between personal status versus social media status. Gregory often speaks to church groups, dance classes, Girl Scout troops and more. She said her focus is on heading off problems before they start.

“You always learn about someone helping after someone is depressed, after they are pregnant, after they’ve been abused or helping the family after someone has committed suicide,” she said.

Gregory’s message is simple, but profound: “You are beautiful. You are someone.”

As ADE witnessed the response to his mother’s program, he questioned why there wasn’t an equivalent one for boys and men. He decided to start his own.

“Before we knew it, he was tying Jack Roper’s tie on the news,” Gregory said.

ADE, a student at Taylors Elementary, started Dragonfly Outreach to promote, among other things, the importance of being a gentleman. Outward appearance, including dressing for a good first impression, is just the start.

“I like to volunteer,” ADE said. “I don’t know who might need my help to get back on their feet. I want to help people just to see them be happy and see them enjoy it. I don’t expect anything in return.”

ADE loves sports and he manages to balance practice and games, school, serving others, speaking to groups and his love of reading.

“If there’s anything anybody needs, he wants to be the one to do it,” Gregory said. “I know I have to nurture this. When he speaks, he is touching people’s lives. He’s just one of a kind. What he talks about most is that school is cool, keeping God first, being gentlemanly and reading is fun.”

Promoting reading among his peers is very important to ADE, who has partnered with Greenville County Library System to conduct library tours for his fellow dragonflies.

“He loves a library,” Gregory said.

“When you read, it opens up your imagination,” ADE said. “It helps you get better.”

ADE serves the community in a variety of ways, including participating in the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office’s Adopt a Cop program. He plans to one day be a software engineer, but for now, he is encouraging other young men to be leaders, not followers.

“Every day, he wakes up with so many ideas,” Gregory said.

Learn more about ADE’s organization and his upcoming events at www.facebook. com/DRAGONFLYOUTREACH.