“My name is Jayden Perez, and I am 12 years old. I am the founder of my own nonprofit organization called From The Bottom of My Heart.
From the age of 8, I have been spreading kindness by helping the less fortunate. I started by donating toys to children living in areas affected by hurricanes, such as Puerto Rico, Florida, and The Bahamas. I wanted to bring them smiles and joy during devastating times.
I have also donated animal food for abandoned animals. I collect and donate animal food to shelters every year for my birthday. I even donated money received so some animals can get their needed shots. I also help my community and other local towns with toys, food, baby toiletries, Easter baskets, backpacks filled with school supplies, and much more.
Even with the pandemic hitting nationwide, that has not stopped me from doing what I love the most, helping the less fortunate. I have provided my school district, public library, police department, and fire department with over 1,500 hand sanitizers. I also donated face masks, hand gloves, and water to my community’s first responders, front line workers, and to the homeless.
I was concerned for the homeless living in the streets, so I decided to make blessing bags filled with toiletries, food, snacks, and water, to then personally hand deliver them. Some of them told me it was their birthday, so I went to a local supermarket and picked them up some cupcakes. They were so happy, and I felt so good bringing them smiles.
Growing My Organization
I know with the pandemic we had to stay home and practice social distancing, but I still wanted to do more from home. So I purchased a sewing machine and learned how to make face masks. I then donated some to my community, family, and people in need of a mask.
With the school being virtual last year, I know many children didn’t have a computer or laptop to do their assignments. So, I reached out to my principal and donated three laptops to my school, that way at least three students in need can have them to complete their homework.
I also have donated over 433 sets of diversity Crayola crayons, as well as donated to a new pre-school and local church that opened in my community. I wanted children to be able to find their own skin tone to draw and color themselves if they wanted too.
Last year during Thanksgiving, I purchased and donated over 20 turkeys, as well as donated to Eva’s Village Shelter to help feed the homeless. I also purchased several gift cards to help families buy food. Several of my friends and family members were infected with Covid-19, so with the help of my parents, I was able to cook a Thanksgiving dinner and drop it off at their front steps to cheer them up. I did not want anyone missing out on a great meal for Thanksgiving.
For Christmas, I donated toys to the community fire department to donate to children at St. Joseph Hospital. I also donated to several families in need with gift cards, and to the public library in my community so they can help families during the holidays.
Helping Those In Need
With the pandemic hitting nationwide, many families lost their jobs, and some could not provide toiletries for their babies. I decided to go to my local ShopRite and made a sign for the community to come together to donate toiletries for the babies in need. After I collected many toiletries, I dropped it off at the local community library, so they could hand it out to the families in need.
I am an ambassador, also called a Spark Leader, for Giving Tuesday. The other Spark Leaders and I perform an act of kindness every Tuesday leading up to the big day, on November 30th. I did random small acts of kindness to inspire others to make a difference during these challenging times.
I had two projects I wanted to complete for Giving Tuesday. I bought and donated 34 educational electronic toys for a preschool in Missouri. The assistant from the preschool had reached out to me in need of toys for the holidays. I was so happy to ship them the toys.
A teacher’s aide reached out to me asking if I am able to help the students for the winter season, and I said yes. So I am donating 150 hats and gloves to a middle school in Paterson. I also will donate to the homeless so they can stay warm during the winter.
I was so blessed to have had Boy Scout Troop 23 reach out wanting to help donate hats and gloves. I met with them to pick up the donations and made so many new friends.
I was also contacted by a company called Amerigroup that wanted to sponsor my project and help me with the hats and gloves. I was able to collect the 150 hats and gloves, plus donate to a local homeless shelter so they can pass along to those in need.
Right now, for the holidays, I have given out over 60 toys to children in my community. I also shipped out toys to parents who reached out to me via DM for a toy. I will be dropping off more toys to other nonprofit organizations that need help with toys for children. I will also donate a couple of toys to a local shelter so they can give to the children and bring some joy and happiness during these challenging times.
I will always spread kindness anyway I can. It’s just glued in my heart.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Jayden Perez. You can follow his nonprofit, From The Bottom of My Heart, on Instagram, Facebook, and their website. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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