Inspired by a class discussion and project about privilege versus hardship, 12-year-old Santhosh, and his classmates Kostas and Navid, collected more than 70 bags of clothes that were donated to The Salvation Army Thrift Store in Newmarket, Ont., to help people experiencing homelessness.
“I did my research,” says Santhosh, “and knew that when we donated to The Salvation Army the items would get to the homeless.”
The trio set a goal of collecting 50 bags of clothes that included T-shirts, pants, hats and shoes. They were excited to surpass their goal.
“We knocked on doors of over 45 houses to hand out flyers we’d created,” says Santhosh. “The pamphlets explained why we were asking for donations, what we were looking for, where they would go and when they would be picked up. People liked the idea.”
A week later the three young people, and their parents, picked up the items and left thank-you notes.
“I’ve seen homeless people and when I compared my life to theirs I wanted to help them out"
“I would do a clothing drive again,” says Santhosh. “I’ve seen homeless people and when I compared my life to theirs I wanted to help them out. It feels good to know I’ve helped someone who struggles to find food, clothing and shelter.
“The Salvation Army understands homelessness and does a lot of work to help people who have challenges and are living on the streets. When we delivered the bags to the thrift store they said, ‘Oh my, thank you so much.’ That made me happy.”