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Fourth-grader’s Hearts of the Homeless program aims to help Flint’s Center for Hope

Published: Feb. 9, 2021 at 7:27 PM EST
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - A fourth-grader’s small idea is helping the homeless around Flint one heart at a time.

Helping the homeless is a big feat to take on -- even bigger for a fourth-grader. But that didn’t stop Andrew Byard-Holloway from doing all he could to help those in need.

“I decided that I should try to help out the community. So I decided to do something for the homeless people that are in need,” he said.

The Flint Cultural Center Academy student brought his idea to his teacher, Kathy Lee, who jumped into action to help him make it a reality.

“When he first brought the idea to me, I was all for it,” she said. “I wanted him to take this idea and run with it. He organized the entire thing. I just pulled the strings together, tightened things up and helped with the organization.”

In just a few days, the students have raised over $500 to be donated to the Center for Hope through their Hearts for the Homeless Valentine’s grams. The fundraiser is running through this week.

Along the way, they’re also lifting the spirits of classmates and showing just how big of an impact a small gesture can have.

“Sometimes they just donate, $1, $5, or $10. The expression on their face, I just think they’re kind of feeling good,” Lee said.

Seeing her students do so much good is heartwarming for Lee and inspires her to continue encouraging other students and their dreams.

“This could be the thing for these kiddos that steps them into their world -- changing careers in 10 years and they look back and go, ‘Oh wow, look what we did here. Now I’m 18 or 24, I can do anything,’” she said.

Byard-Holloway said he’s proud of what he’s accomplished, but he noted that none of it would have been possible without the support he received.

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