Proud Mama

March 2, 2009 at 10:27 pm 14 comments

     For every person that thinks kids with autism don’t experience empathy for other people, I’d like to share with them this story. As part of my job, I spent an afternoon recently at a homeless “campus” in downtown Phoenix. It’s an amazing place, really, that incorporates a shelter, job placement services, educational services, a post office, library, and low cost housing for people just starting to get back on their feet.

     I picked up C from school that afternoon, humbled by what I had seen, and talked to him about where I had been that day. I told him I wished I could think of a way to help the homeless people I had seen, and C offered to let them all move in with us. His next idea was to give them his allowance, which then progressed into all the kids at his school giving their allowances, and finally ended up with his wanting to do a penny drive at his school.

     And thus, “Pennies for Hope” was born. A project lasting all of February, we set a goal of $500, which is about $1 per student at his school. Every week, C and I collected the buckets from each classroom and weighed them to see who raised the most money. By last Friday, every single bank in town was out of pennies, and people were driving to the next town over to get them for their kids’ classes. More and more poured in, and this morning, we had a final count of 623 pounds of coins. The fire department hauled it over to the local casino for sorting and counting, and we ended up with $1,347.25.

     C’s final words? “Wow. That will help A LOT of homeless people.”

C loading up the pennies in the fire truck!

C loading up the pennies in the fire truck!

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14 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Holly's Mom  |  March 2, 2009 at 11:53 pm

    Your story just made me want to cry! What a special little guy you have.

    Reply
  • 2. therocchronicles  |  March 3, 2009 at 5:38 am

    My eyes welled up with tears after reading this post. Darcy you have a truly amazing little boy!! You have every right to be proud of that kid! Great picture!

    Hugs to you from the (snowy) East Coast (wishing I was back in AZ!)

    Reply
  • 3. T$  |  March 3, 2009 at 5:53 am

    cool. did he get to ride in the fire truck?

    Reply
  • 4. mama mara  |  March 3, 2009 at 7:25 am

    Few kids — on or off the spectrum — have this level of compassion and can-do spirit. Well done, C!

    Reply
  • 5. pixiemama  |  March 3, 2009 at 8:10 am

    Wow. Just – WOW.
    Love that C.
    x0

    Reply
  • 6. Good Fountain  |  March 3, 2009 at 9:17 am

    what a fabulous kid you have!

    Reply
  • 7. mom-nos  |  March 3, 2009 at 9:46 am

    That is awesome!!

    Reply
  • 8. Jesch  |  March 3, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    Woohoo!

    Reply
  • 9. robinaltman  |  March 3, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    That’s just lovely – of both of you! C has more compassion for others than many people I know, adults included. He’s a great guy!

    Reply
  • 10. Jessica  |  March 4, 2009 at 12:21 am

    You’ve got every reason to be proud of him. Well done!

    Reply
  • 11. Angie  |  March 4, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    What a great idea you and C came up with….way to go on seeing it through and way to go C for being such a little gem!

    Reply
  • 12. goodmum  |  March 5, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    Wow! What a wonderful, awesome, caring experience this was for C. How incredible. You must be so proud!

    Reply
  • 13. Lois  |  March 6, 2009 at 2:50 pm

    I know the drive was a big committment on your part as well…it was fun to see you and C gathering all the containers and weighing them in. This was truly a special experience for both of you…what a pair! ❤

    Reply
  • 14. Becky  |  March 13, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    Jess – could you please forward this?
    To Mr. C,

    I am so impressed to see your picture and to hear about all of your hard work. What a kind and generous thing to do. Every day people say that they need to do something for others, but many never get around to it. I can’t believe that because of you a great many people will be helped. I’m going to take your idea to my school and challenge them to think of an idea that will help others the way you have. We may try something just a little different because they will decide, but you will have helped motivate us. We have a very small school and may not do as much as you could do, but I’ll let you know what is happens. What a super cool kid you are. Nice talking with you. Love from Jessie’s mom

    I’ll have to send you C’s email address, but I will forward this to him! He’ll love it!

    Reply

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