While most kids are thinking about what they want for their birthday or for Christmas, these kids are thinking about how they can help their neighbors in need.
Whether it’s raising money for the homeless or organizing coat drives or collections of bottled water, these boys and girls are showing it’s not your size or age that matters, it’s your heart that counts. Here are just a few local kids making a difference.
Gracie Bryan’s Warm Heart
Last year, six-year-old Gracie donated money from her piggy bank to feed 15 meals to Nashville’s homeless. This year, Gracie took things a step further and organized a coat drive.
“This was all Gracie’s idea,” says mom Amy. “After donating her own money last year, she wanted to do more. Gracie made flyers that said ‘Warm Somebody With Your Heart’ and posted them at church.” Gracie’s efforts resulted in 85 coats for Nashville’s homeless.
“It makes me sad to see someone standing on the street corner without a coat,” said Gracie. “I hope these coats will keep them warm.”
Bryson & Brielle Fox Keep Giving
For the fourth year in a row, 12 year-old Bryson and his sister Brielle (9) have raised money for the homeless men, women and children of Middle Tennessee. Bryson has even figured out a way to maximize their donation, timing its delivery to coincide with an annual radiothon when funds are matched
dollar for dollar.
dollar for dollar.
This year, the Fox family was out of town on the day of the radiothon, so they sent Grandma and Grandpa in their place, just to make sure their donation was doubled. In total, Bryson and Brielle have raised over $5,000 to help the homeless.
“It makes me feel good to know I’m helping someone in need,” says Bryson.
Jacob, Samuel & Nathaniel’s Quest to Help the Homeless
Jacob Head couldn’t believe it when he saw a homeless man was standing on the side of the road one day asking for money. He begged his mom to help, but she explained he might spend the cash on the “wrong things” and suggested they come up with a way to help more than just this one man.
That incident two years ago has led 8-year-old Jacob and his twin brothers Samuel and Nathaniel (6) to donate over 100 blankets and 140 sets of hats, gloves and scarves to Nashville’s homeless.
As Jacob left the Mission last year, he could be heard saying, “We’ll be back sometime this summer. I know the homeless will need bottled water.”
True to his word, Jacob and his brothers returned to the Mission this summer after collecting over 2,000 bottles of water. And at Thanksgiving, they returned with 3 milk jugs filled with coins and money they had collected from their friends and family in Westmoreland, Tennessee.
“I’m on a mission to help as many homeless men, women and children as I can,” said Jacob. “They are in need and I want to help.”
Daniel’s Treats Bless Those In Need
Twelve-year-old Daniel Errico, is the Owner and CEO of Daniel’s Treats, a small candy machine business. Every quarter, he saves a portion of his profits for college and donates a percentage to a local charity. After seeing a story about the homeless, Daniel decided he wanted to help and sent the Nashville Rescue Mission a check for $30.00.
“Daniel loves to make money,” says mom Sue. “But he loves giving it away even more.”
“Imagine if it were you in need,” says Daniel. “What would you do? I know I would want someone to help me. So that’s what I’m doing. I’m trying to help those in need.”
When Tracy Moore asked her 6-year-old son Michael what he wanted to do with his piggy bank savings he said, “I want to donate it to the Nashville Rescue Mission to help the homeless.”
“This is another touching example of a kid who has a heart to help those who are in need,” says Cliff
Tredway, Director of Communications and Marketing for the Nashville Rescue Mission. “Michael’s donation of over $200 will go a long way in providing food, clothing and shelter to the homeless in our community.”
Learning More Than Just Math
It all started when a teacher from Smithson-Craighead Academy was teaching a lesson on ways to help in the community, when a student with concerns about feeding the homeless mentioned a commercial he’d seen that referenced providing a meal for $2.26. What started out as a lesson on community responsibility grew into a math lesson. This generated the question, “How many can we feed with one turkey?”
The students devised a formula and then it became a third grade class project. It wasn’t long before the second grade and fourth grade wanted in on the action. When all was said and done, the students raised $325.00 for the homeless of Middle Tennessee.
What To Do With $100
On the 100th day of school, 7-year-old Kasey Lane was asked what she would do with $100. While most kids were envisioning a Wii or an iPod, Kasey was thinking of how this $100 could help the poor and homeless.
“I’m so proud of Kasey,” says mom Amy. “Whenever she sees someone on the side of the road, she wants to help them.”
“When I become President,” said Kasey, “there won’t be any more homeless or hungry people because I’m going to make sure they have what they need.”
“These kids are an inspiration to all of us,” said Don Worrell, President and CEO of the Nashville Rescue Mission. “They are making a difference in the lives of Nashville’s homeless and ultimately a difference in their community.”
It is through the faithful support of friends like you and kids like these that provide the necessary steps to get a homeless man, woman and child from where they are to the place God desires them to be.