When Danielle Britt and her fiancé, Kensley Dougan explained the water crisis in Flint, Michigan to their 7-year-old son, Isiah, the little boy wanted to find a way to help. The city has been declared in a state of emergency after lead contamination destroyed residents accessibility to clean water.
The Gainesville, Virginia family reached out to Eisenhower Elementary in Flint with plans to send over bottled water but the school’s secretary, Lisa Palermo requested hand sanitizer instead.
According to The Huffington Post, students were scared to wash their hands due to the lead and the other harmful bacteria in the water.
When Isiah learned that it would cost approximately $500 to provide enough sanitizing dispensers and refills for offices, hallways, classrooms and bathrooms, the little boy vowed to make it happen.
His parents helped him to create a GoFundMe page which exceeded their $500 goal in a mere 48 hours.
With his first mission accomplished, Isiah wanted to challenge himself to help even more kids. “Now I am going to try to send some boxes to another school too!” he wrote on the fundraising page. “There are a lot of kids who need clean hands!”
He changed the goal of the GoFundMe page to $10,000 which would be enough money to send hand sanitizer to every school in Flint. As of February 26, 418 people have donated a total of $12,691.
With over 20 years experience as a school administrator, Palermo shared that she’s never interacted with a child as selfless as Isiah. In an interview with The Washington Post, she said, “His voice, his demeanor, everything about him touched my heart…the words don’t explain it, he touched my heart to no end.”
Now that Isiah has been able to help students in Flint, they’re continuing to broaden their reach. The family is planning to send boxes of sanitizer to daycares and women’s shelters.
Isiah wants to continue giving because he’s appreciative of the feedback he’s already received from students at Eisenhower. “I think he’s pretty nice and stuff. He’s giving us hand sanitizer and we didn’t do nothing for him,” said fifth grader Logan Anderson.
Isiah has been empowered by the fact that his selfless crusade has helped others in need.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re small, it doesn’t mean you can’t do big things” he said.
— Daniel Beerthuis ✌🌎 (@DanielBeerthuis) February 27, 2016