6-year-old raises $20,000 for SF Food Bank

March 18, 2010 12:44:14 PM PDT
A 6-year-old's efforts to help feed the poor has now raised $20,000 for the San Francisco Food Bank and her donation is about to get even bigger.

The little girl's goal to try to feed the hungry gained so much attention that it inspired strangers and even a corporation to join in.

They are calling 6-year-old Phoebe Russell a hero. About a year ago, as a 5-year-old preschooler, Phoebe had the goal to raise about $1,000 for the San Francisco Food Bank by collecting cans.

She was able to pull family and friends into her effort by writing letters, but then she had her story featured on the Internet and within two months, she collected more than $3,700.

Tyson Foods heard about what Phoebe was doing and the company donated more than 30,000 pounds of chicken to the San Francisco Food Bank. It works out to almost 120,000 donated meals for the hungry in San Francisco.

The food bank is celebrating the child's massive effort, and Tyson Foods named her the company's 'hunger all-star' for this month.

"At my preschool before you graduate you have to do a charity project," Phoebe said.

"If someone who is 5 years old can have this kind of impact, you know, what can we as adults do and how can we magnify our efforts?" San Francisco Food Bank Executive Director Paul Ash said.

What started as a preschool project a year ago has turned into an ongoing affair. Phoebe wants to keep on giving and donating to the food bank.

The food bank said her effort was vital, and in all, 15 tons of food was donated. They say in hard times with the economy, it's tough to keep the shelves stocked.


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