Tatianna Austin may be from Waldorf, Maryland, but when she heard about a shelter in East St. Louis for homeless teens, she decided to help.
Her Junior Girl Scouts troop collected toiletries and other items, and instead of having a traditional birthday party and in lieu of gifts she requested her friends make a donation to her cause.
How did she hear about Vicky Forby’s shelter? Her mother, Sheril White, said someone from Forby’s office called her job about a grant for the homeless shelter in East St. Louis. She said she told her daughter about the shelter, and the kids took it from there.
Because she had collected so many items. Tatianna decided to share some of the donations with East St. Louis. She and her friends collected five or six tubs full of toiletries, clothing and other stuff. Tatianna says when she sees people on television and in her community and other places she travels to who do not have what she has, she is saddened.
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“When I see that they don’t have the things I have and I am only 10-years old, I want to help them,” she said.
“I have a home and when I see homeless people, I want to help them. I want to give them things that make them know someone cares about them,” Tatianna said.
“I am very proud that she and her friends came up with something like they did to make a difference in people’s lives. I am thankful that God blessed me with a seed to water and nurture and watch how she works to make a difference in the community and in the world. It’s an awesome feeling,” White said.
Bill Spencer, public relations director for Emerson Park Development Corporation, said, “We are just really excited that a girl her age would take her birthday party and turn it into something where people bring gifts for the homeless.”