Raisins, cookies, crackers, peanuts – a needy 10-year-old boy was glad for anything.
All he wanted were school snacks. And on Friday night, he received them.
The Capital Region youngster got the goodies with help from folks at local crisis organization Things of My Very Own and Visco’s Vley Road Pizzeria in Scotia.
Here’s the story:
- The unidentified boy filled out a Things of My Very Own gift tag – part of a program in which needy children fill out tags for Christmas gifts, and adults fulfill the wishes.
- The tag read, “I’m a 10 year old boy I want shcool snacks (sic) so I’m not the only one not eating during snack time at school I wear size 12 and I like Pokemon.”
- The tag, along with a bunch of other ones, made it to Visco’s, one of several businesses working with Things of My Very Own.
- Visco employee and Facebook manager Caitlin Krauser put a photo of the tag on the pizzeria’s Facebook page.
- The photo caught fire and went viral. Soon people all over the country, and even the world, were thinking about a boy who only wanted Trail Mix, Lorna Doones or peanut butter crackers for a mid-day snack.
“The little boy received his snacks (Friday) evening, along with a couple hundred more than he had hoped for,” said Rayn Boncie, CEO and founder of Things of My Very Own, in a text message. “I’m pretty confident that he will be holding his head pretty high at school on Monday. I can’t help but wonder if he is still staring at them hours later.”
Things of My Very Own provides crisis intervention services to children affected by extensive abuse and-or neglect.
Other people were assisted on Friday. They received portable cribs.
“The reception area of the Crisis Intervention Center (on Green Street) was filled to capacity (Friday) morning and several shed tears of joy,” Boncie said. “The outpour of support has already had a profound impact on the lives of those we serve. I held a woman for minutes as she cried and told me that she had ‘prayed for this.’ For the first time in their lives, the individuals that we serve know that they are valued and that they aren’t as alone as they feel.”
The requests on the gift tags have been touching.
“They’ve asked for warm coats, blankets for their beds, snacks for school, they’re heart-breaking” said Ann Olds, one of the Visco owners, on Friday night. “Customers pick up a tag, buy the stuff, put it in a bag and bring it back here.”
The boy’s tag was taken, but a photo remains on the Visco Facebook page. So people still want to help the boy with the light lunch box.
“People are sending in stuff from all over the country,” Krauser said. “We’ve had calls from Puerto Rico, Switzerland, Canada.”
Folks have shipped goods to Scotia, and Things of My Own personnel have picked up goodies for the kid. Krauser said the snack kid is helping other children, as people see the one tag and wonder how they might help other children.
One child asked for a mother. Another just wanted a home.
People are asking questions on both the Things of My Very Own and Visco Facebook pages.
“I live in Ohio but I would like to take care of this little boy for Christmas. Is that possible?” asked one.
“Would you know if the size 12 is clothing or boots?” asked another interested helper. “We’re shopping and I asked Visco’s Pizzeria to hold this tag for us.”
“If I buy snacks tomorrow for this boy can you get it to him ASAP so he doesn’t have to wait?” read another note.
The boy may start snacking this weekend.
“He’ll probably be the kid sharing them with the other kids,” Krauser said.
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Categories: Life and Arts