Eight-year-old Mackenzie Steele believes no child deserves to sleep on the floor, and she’s vowed to do something about it.
The Rea View Elementary School third-grader dedicated her summer to benefiting Beds for Kids, a Charlotte nonprofit that delivers beds and other essential furniture to those in need.
Mackenzie found her motivation to help the nonprofit after helping others through canned food drives and other efforts in her church, but she didn’t want her service to stop there.
She and her mother, Kristin Steele, began looking online for other nonprofits that needed help in the area and found Beds for Kids.
“It was really sad. I thought no kids should sleep on the floor,” the 8-year-old said. “If I didn’t have any furniture or a bed, it would be sad. I thought (the families in need) probably don’t have enough for food either and probably don’t live in a big house of anything.”
She met with Beds for Kids staff at their office and warehouse in uptown Charlotte and saw the nonprofit’s process, which included collecting donated furniture and distributing it to families in need.
“It was easier for her to relate to,” said Kristin Steele.
Mackenzie learned how some children have to sleep on their clothes as beds and set out to help two families by raising $900.
She raised funds through a lemonade stand in her neighborhood and collected furniture that valued about $1,500 through a furniture drive. Since she surpassed her original goal, she chose to set a new goal of $2,000. She then held a fundraiser at Sew Fun! Parties, located on 8155 Ardrey Kell Road, to make headbands on Aug. 15.
Sew Fun! owner Priscilla Davis encouraged sewers to join Mackenzie to raise funds. Volunteers made 26 headbands that will be sold for $5 through Kristin’s email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Beyond fundraising, Mackenzie hopes to continue to raise awareness about the nonprofit. She also hopes to conduct a bake sale outside of Harris Teeter later this month.