"If you have an idea and really want to help someone, it can really be done."
Alex and Nolan Brown, ages 8 and 5, respectively, worried about the children who lost their belongings in Hurricane Katrina, so they collected stuffed animals to send to them.
What kind of philanthropic or volunteer work did/do you do?
Alex and Nolan did two huge fundraisers for the children that were involved in the Katrina Hurricane. The first thing they did was to collect hundreds of stuffed animals for the children in Mississippi. The second thing was to collect 600+ toys for children in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, to be delivered in time for Christmas. Anderson News Company delivered the toys for them.
What inspired you to get involved?
Alex and Nolan were really hurt and upset that the children would not have stuffed animals to sleep with at night and were truly concerned because of the hurricane and the devastation it caused. Then they were worried that Santa would not find the children if they didn't have their homes, so they came up with the idea of asking people for toys.
How did you first get involved? Give us some details.
Alex and Nolan collected teddy bears and all kinds of stuffed animals on their front porch and received so many that they moved it to their school, Knoxville Christian, which led them to be on the local news. They also collected over 600 toys at Anderson News Company, where their father works.
What is/was the best thing about your experience?
The best thing about the experience was to know the children would have a Christmas and a stuffed animal to sleep with.
What is/was the hardest part?
This time there wasn't a hard part.
What was the biggest surprise?
The biggest surprise was how many people reached out and gave so much.
What new things have you learned as a result of your experience and how have you changed as a result?
We learned that if you have an idea and really want to help someone, it can really be done. It makes it easier to help people because you're not afraid anymore.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking of getting involved in philanthropy or volunteering?
It's a good, fun thing to do.
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