Group of girls pay it forward

By Julie Love FOX 26 KNPN Updated Jul 22, 2016

Addie Bramlage is a 10 year old St. Joseph student. And like most kids her age, she has a favorite birthday present. It’s an elephant she received from a teacher one year. And it’s great to cuddle with according to this soon to be 5th grader.

But a few years back, Bramlage, and her group of friends decided to start a new birthday tradition. The group have summer birthdays and instead of looking forward to gifts, the group of school mates have asked for money and supplies in order to pay it forward.

Addie Bramlage, 10, shares what's in the care packs that her and her friends made for kids. More than 35 bags were assembled and then donated to the YWCA Women's Shelter and to the American Red Cross, Northwest Missouri Chapter on Friday. The pillows were handmade by the grade schoolers. The group spent a year collecting donations and stuffing the bags, asking for money to help the cause instead of birthday presents.
Addie Bramlage, 10, shares what’s in the care packs that her and her friends made for kids. More than 35 bags were assembled and then donated to the YWCA Women’s Shelter and to the American Red Cross, Northwest Missouri Chapter on Friday. The pillows were handmade by the grade schoolers. The group spent a year collecting donations and stuffing the bags, asking for money to help the cause instead of birthday presents.

This past year, the friends have made homemade pillows, raised money for activities and hygiene essentials to create care bags for kids.

Friday afternoon, the group donated over 35 bags to the YWCA Women’s Shelter and The American Red Cross, Northwest Missouri Chapter filled with their labors of love.

Angie Springs, executive director for the Red Cross, happily received the gifts.

“That’s awesome,” Springs said as she greeted the group.

“We average two house fires a week and lots of times those families have kids in them,” Springs told the girls.

The young group of givers put some thought into what went into the bags.

“We decided that when the kids, if they need something to snuggle with, they will have a pillow that we made,” Bramlage explained. “We decided that kids might want to draw or color or write down their feelings, so we put in some notebooks.”

And while this youth hasn’t ever personally known someone who has lost their personal possessions, she is empathetic to the situation.

“It can be sad especially if they had special things they liked, it could be gone,” Bramlage said. “And if they have things to snuggle with and to do, to take their minds off of what they’ve gone through.”

And when asked how it feels?

“It feels really good,” Bramlage responded with an affirmative nod.

Julie  Love can be reached at julie.love@knpn.com. Follow her on Twitter: @KNPNLove

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