Most kids look forward to their birthdays for the presents.But Bella Smith looks forward to her birthdays because she gets to give presents.
It started when Bella 7 and a third-grader at Wyan-Pine Grove Elementary School in Kentucky and a classmate told her that his family couldn’t afford to throw him a birthday party.
“The school she attends is a Title 1 school, which means 80% of the population here is impoverished — so we have students that struggle with a lot of things,” said Evans, who teaches at Bella’s school, Bella’s mom Marlana Evans told Good Morning America.The news that one of her classmates would go without a festive party to celebrate the day of their birth and how far they’ve come, just broke Bella’s heart.
“I just kind of felt down, kind of. I went from happy just to kind of miserable,” she told Lex 18.
So, she did something about it.
She launched something called “Bella’s Birthday Boxes.”
She and her mom would put together boxes filled with cake mix, icing, sprinkles, candles, balloons, and some extra goodies so that students who couldn’t otherwise afford it could have a birthday.
“Not all people have as much as I do. I want to share a little bit of my birthday with them,” Bella said.
Instead of asking for presents for her birthday, she asks for donations and supplies to fund her birthday boxes.
The boxes are then distributed to students through the school’s Family Resource Center.
“She’s always had a heart for people and always been extremely kind and helpful toward other people,” Evans said.
But Bella doesn’t take any credit for her deeds herself.
“I thank God for the opportunity for letting me be able to shine my light and show that I love my neighbor,” she said.
“I’m extremely proud of her,” Evans said. “She’s a very good girl with a big heart.”
Bella will pack over 65 boxes within a year.
Thanks to Bella, that’s 65 children who will have a happier birthday just because of her.
And Bella says that anyone can be like her and help.
“It don’t matter if it’s here in London or Alaska, it don’t matter and you can help whether when you’re 2, 4, 8, or 102,” she says.
Bella’s story ended up going viral and was picked up by several news stations.
Pillsbury ended up hearing about Bella’s story and offered to provide her with some cake mix.
She even got gift baskets and donations from Betty Crocker and General Mills.
“We are currently in talks with a couple of groups who are going to attempt to help us bump up donations and pack lots more boxes. Our hope is to expand out to several more schools, and possibly the local nursing home (if the logistics will work out for that),” Bella’s mom said.
As of Bella’s birthday in 2020, they had made and delivered over 300 boxes.