5-Year-Old Sold Treats To Pay Off School Lunch Debt For 123 Of Her Classmates

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No one is everyone too young to make a world of difference.

And Katelynn Hardee, a kindergartner, was on a mission to make sure that all her classmates had enough to eat. She was inspired after overhearing that a parent had trouble paying for an after-school program. Katelynn asked her mom all kinds of questions, trying to understand why this might be. As her mom informed her, some people sadly aren’t as fortunate as others.

“We need to try to be kind and give when we can,” her mother, Karina Hardee, recalled telling her.

This message was received loud and clear by the child, who decided to act by setting up a stand where she sold hot chocolate, cider, and cookies in order to raise money for the families at her school.

Katelyn spent an entire Sunday in early December selling her treats, and as a result, she and her mom managed to collect $80. This was put towards paying off the negative lunch balances of her fellow students, which totaled at 123. The contribution made a huge difference to many families who found themselves struggling to pay fees that are sometimes $10 or more.

By doing this, 5-year-old Katelynn is hoping that the kids “can have a snack and lunch. If they don’t, their tummies grumble.”

This doesn’t seem to be the end for Katelynn’s good deeds either. She is now thinking bigger, and is wanting to raise enough money in order to pay off the negative balances for the rest of the students at her school, as well as those students living within her school district.

In order to achieve this, Katelynn has established the #KikisKindnessProject where other students and staff at her elementary school can host their own cocoa and baked goods stands in order to come together to pay off lunch balances. Katelyn also wants to do more. Once all kids have a $0 balance on their lunch accounts, she plans to use the money in order to help bring back school programs which were the target of budget cuts.

“It’s all about kindness,” her mother said. “Especially this holiday season, and with everything that’s going on in the world, we just need a little bit more kindness out there.”

Keep up the kindness Katelynn!

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Anastasia is an American writer and journalist living in Dublin, Ireland. Her Twitter is @AnastasiaArell5.
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