Money raised by two boys from Lake View will not make or break the SPCA Serving Erie County budget, but their unselfish act should serve as an example to young and old alike.
Brennen, 11, and Evan, 9, Kilcoyne worked hard to raise $1,300, a springtime project that lasted until this week. And it turned into a family affair, including their parents John and Shannon, their younger brother Liam, 5, and the godparents of all three boys, Gale and Robert Major.
With input from an SPCA official, the boys purchased $625.97 worth of items from the SPCA pet supply store and donated that haul along with the remaining money as a cash donation. The joy the kids got out of that shopping spree and donation matched that of the adults who watched these kids splurge for a good cause.
It’s also encouraging to note that more and more youngsters are requesting donations be given to the SPCA instead of gifts for themselves. Gifts can be in cash or items from the organization’s wish list at www.yourspca.org.
The Kilcoyne boys, by overcoming shyness, soliciting businesses for in-kind donations and collecting $400 by redeeming cans and bottles, reached a goal of helping others. And theirs is not the only story of young people paying it forward.
Kali J. Korzelius, 27, of Grand Island recently lost her six-year battle with brain cancer.
Korzelius dedicated herself to helping others by becoming active with stupidcancer.org, an organization that empowers young people diagnosed with cancer. She also worked as a program assistant in the Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Program at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.
By working hard to help educate and comfort others her age, Korzelius succeeded in the main goal she voiced as a young teen: to bring life to the people.
These are stories of young people leading by examples the rest of us should follow.
Let’s not forget the various ways in which we can all pay it forward. The United Way campaign is under way. Catholic Charities has a major drive in the spring, but always welcomes donations. The News Neediest Fund, which distributes hundreds of thousands of dollars in toys and food for the holidays, is about to set up shop.
These are just a few examples of how we can all help the less fortunate.