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Two seventh-graders collect more than $700 for LEAFB to replace stolen funds
A giving heart knows no age.
Two Little Elm seventh-grade students took it upon themselves to organize their own fundraising drive at their school to replace a charity donation container that was stolen Jan. 27 from volunteers at the town's Kroger grocery store. The duo collected $756.58.
Makayla Lewis was one of the volunteers in Kroger's foyer collecting canned goods and cash donations for the Little Elm Area Food Bank when a young man in a dark sweater snatched the donation container from the collection table and ran outside to join his accomplice in a getaway vehicle.
A similar crime had been committed at a local Starbucks just days earlier.
"I felt bad because I was supposed to be getting the money, and they had stolen it while I was watching," Lewis said. "I just really wanted to collect it back."
Lewis and Cassidy Vance took action to organize their own fundraiser to replace the stolen charity donation container that had more than $100 in it. Vance suggested bringing the fundraiser to their school, Lakeside Middle School.
The girls wrote a proposal and presented it to the school for permission, which they said the biggest challenge they encountered was trying to get a meeting with Principal Ray Winkler.
"He's busy a lot," Lewis said.
After getting authorization from Winkler, Vance wrote names on bags and the girls split up the bags between fourth-period classes to collect money for the LEAFB. They made the collection into a competition between the classes-three first-place winners received a pizza party today and three second-place winners won a "sweats day," where students can wear sweats to school. Seventh-grade English teacher Misty Joaquin's class won the competition.
"It helped me because you could see that there are people who can't really afford the same things as you, and it's nice to see how many people actually care enough to bring the money," Lewis said. "You see how other people care for others."
Vance added that in one of the classes, a student brought in $115 to donate.
Both girls hope others learn from this experience as well.
"I hope it inspires them to help other people as well, even just donating the money to help people who can't do the same things as them and afford the same stuff," Lewis said.
"It doesn't hurt to help people," Vance added.
Both students will be honored at a Little Elm Town Council meeting next month for their outstanding achievements as model citizens.
"I think it'd be pretty cool to do it again," Lewis said. "I think [I would] expand it to other charities."