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Generous Girl Shares Her Story of Donating Birthday Presents

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - For her birthday, Kairi Richardson normally would ask for the same thing as many girls her age.

"I usually like to get books and little craft things," said Kairi.

However, after she thought long and hard about what she wanted, she came to a different conclusion.

"I decided that if I don't need clothes, things, or toys. It would only make sense to pick the thing that  I could give to someone else to make their life better," she said.

So on her birthday invitation, she wrote the following as her one wish.

"If you are able, please bring a donation of new socks and underwear, any kids size, instead of a present."

All of these donations would be given to HomewardBound, a local homeless shelter here in the Grand Valley.

"A lot of times working at a homeless shelter, we don't hear a lot of great stories. We hear a lot of sad, tragic stories. Hearing something like this brought tears to everybody's eyes," said Heather Ripley, HomewardBound.

It brought tears to even her mother Jennifer, saying the lessons she taught Kairi over the past nine years had paid off.

"Every year, since it's so close to Christmas, I made her pick one of her toys to give to Toys for Tots," said Jennifer.

Nonetheless, she never made Kairi donate all of her toys. She said this time around, it was her idea.

"Kairi is a very empathetic child. She just is always concerned about other people and how they're doing and feeling," said Heather.

Though kids her age usually want gifts, she now has a different motto.

"I get presents every year and there are some kids who never get gifts," said Kairi.

"I would love it on the next invitation we went to if it said please bring socks and underwear," said Jennifer.

Either way, when she turns eleven, Kairi plans to keep this new tradition alive.

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