7-year-old raises hundreds to fund meals for kids

Posted at 4:03 PM, Apr 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-19 18:47:05-04

GRAND HAVEN — A 7-year-old raised hundreds of dollars to fund meals for kids in Grand Haven Wednesday.

Makayla Nance, a first grader at Rosy Mound Elementary School, wanted to help her classmates so, in March, she started a GoFundMe to pay off their school lunch debts.

“I realized not lots of people can have healthy lunches like I can cause they don’t have enough money,” said Nance. “So, I was thinking, ‘What could I do about that?’”

Before she could make the donation though, Josh Brugger, owner of Bruggerhouse Builders, paid off the lunch debts for all of the elementary schools within Grand Rapids Area Public Schools.

“Her dad reached out to me and we decided, you know, the lunch was paid off but she still wanted to do something with the money raised,” said Brugger. “Backpack Blessings seemed like a great way to do that.”

Backpack Blessings is a program run by Love in Action, a Grand Haven nonprofit. It provides food on the weekends to 500 elementary school students with GRAPS.

Love in Action usually buys the food, but Wednesday the funds came from Makayla. She donated the $612 she raised on her own.

“It makes me feel good that I’m helping others with their lunches,” said Nance.

“On average, each of these bags costs us about $4.50, so we’re paying for about 100 to 150 of the bags,” said Josh Bytwek, Love in Action executive director.

“With the coronavirus going on right now, food is a necessity item that people need,” said Brugger. “Makayla’s donation is going to make it possible for kids to have food.”

While it wasn’t her original plan, Nance says that’s okay as long as she and others help kids in need.

“People shouldn’t care how different they are,” said Nance. “They should help each other cause some kids might not have money and some kids might not have enough food. Lots of kids are different but that doesn’t matter.”

“We can look into our hearts, our pocketbooks, whatever skills and abilities we have and reach out to our friends and neighbors,” said Brugger. “It can be an awesome thing.”

To donate to Love in Action click here.