When an 8-year-old boy from Vancouver, Washington heard about his school’s outstanding lunch debt, he decided to do something about it. So he launched his own keychain business with the profits going towards helping his fellow classmates get out of debt.
According to People, Keoni Ching earned an astounding $4,015 from the sale of his homemade keychains. He presented the money to his Vancouver school during “Kindness Week.”
Boy Uses Profits From His Homemade Keychain Business to Pay off Schools’ Lunch Debts
Along with the help of his parents and grandparents, the young entrepreneur made more than 300 key chains and priced them at $5 each. “I love key chains,” Keoni told CNN. “They look good on my backpack.”
As CNN reports, Keoni and his family have sent keychains all over the country once the story behind his business got out. “There were several people who bought one key chain and gave (Keoni) a hundred bucks. It was absolutely amazing how much support the community showed for his whole project.”
Keoni was initially inspired by San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman, who paid off $27,000 worth of school lunch debt for those in need. “My husband and I had been talking about Richard Sherman and the kindness he showed by paying off school lunch debt,” his mom told People. “It was more the act than the man. Keoni was just inspired by Richard Sherman because of what he did.”
Naturally, Keoni’s parents are deeply proud of his acts of kindness. “He seriously has the biggest heart!” added his mom. “We have tried so hard to teach him that if you are kind to others you will always be happy.” And the boy plans to keep going.
When asked why he wanted to help others, Keoni said, “it just makes the world a better place.” The funds Keoni donated during Kindness Week will go towards paying off the lunch debt at his school, Benjamin Franklin Elementary, as well as six others.
According to CNN, student lunch debt is a growing problem in schools across the United States. While it’s unclear, how states are trying to combat these debts, many states have made it illegal to withhold a hot lunch from a child just because he or she no longer had money in their account.
Katie Nave is a freelance writer, producer, and mama living in Brooklyn, New York. Driven by her passion for storytelling, she is always seeking opportunities to elevate people who are working to better the world around them.
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