Local children help needy families

Published 1:50 pm Friday, December 23, 2011

Behind the counter- Ryan Adams, Jewel Anvar, Summer Kirkland In Front of the counter-Shelby Morrison Customer- Judy Franklin


News Intern

Twelve-year-old Ryan Adams set a goal for himself this year, to raise $1,000 for needy families.  On Thursday, Dec. 22, Ryan and his friends worked diligently in the rain to sell hot chocolate for members of the community. Ryan’s friends and family, including Tyler Rentz, Perry Waddell, Summer Kirkland, Jewel Anvar, Shelby Morrison and Austin Miller, surpassed their goal and made more than $1,200 in sales and donations. That money will help five families.

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This was Ryan’s fourth year selling hot chocolate to raise money for families in need. Originally, he opened his hot chocolate stand so he could buy presents for his friends and family. It did not take Ryan long to decide he wanted to help the community instead.

At such a young age, Ryan’s family believes he has already set an example for not only for his peers, but adults as well. Ryan’s mother, Shaie Bowen, is proud of all her son has accomplished.

“He has his little cousins out here helping,” Bowen said. “It sets an example because Ryan is showing them that Christmas is about giving back, not about receiving. It teaches the little ones here that Christmas isn’t just about the toys.”

Judy Franklin was one of the many customers stopping by the hot chocolate stand to show Ryan support. Although this was Franklin’s first year at the sale, she was impressed by the enthusiasm and effort of the children.

“It’s wonderful that kids are taking initiative to help the community,” Franklin said. “If every adult had a heart like these children, imagine what our community would be.”

Throughout the morning, several business owners donated money. After seeing support from the community, Ryan knew he was making a difference.

“I know there are a lot of people that need money and gifts a lot more than me,” Ryan said.

Alongside a generator, Ryan’s church family donated a variety of baked goods that were handed out to customers. After seeing the impact Ryan was making, customers soon started bringing baked goods as a donation.

“We’re seeing a lot of support from everyone,” Bowen said.

Ryan hopes to continue providing gift cards for families in need. He plans on setting his goal higher each year.

“I like knowing all the money I’m getting is going to go to a family that needs it,” he said.