Saturday, September 13, 2008

Broward County, Fl. Kids Donate Toys And Clothes To Help Children In Haiti

Broward children in a few cities give their own clothes and toys to bring comfort

FORT LAUDERDALE - They saw naked children trudging through mud and they wanted to know why the kids didn't have clothes.

They saw families on their rooftops and wanted to know why they were not inside their houses.

The images from Haiti of families after Hurricane Ike ravaged their homes is prompting many South Florida children to ask questions and take action.

Some are saving their allowances to give to organizations. A 7-year-old in Coral Springs started her own clothing drive. And some Fort Lauderdale kids are saying bye-bye to toys they cherish so they can send a little dose of sunshine to those suffering miles away.
Gabriel Shimabuco, 9, brought a Cabbage Patch doll to a storm relief drive Friday at Badcock Home Furniture Store in Fort Lauderdale.

Shimabuco's only demand was that the red-hair doll in the purple tutu go to a little girl in Haiti.

"I got it for Christmas and I never opened it," she said, beaming with pride. "I just hope the kids get it. They don't have to say thank you."

Four storms this year have left more than 300 people dead in Haiti, and officials say that number could rise as high as 600. Days after flooding caused by Hurricane Ike, emergency supplies have been slow in reaching some of the hardest-hit areas. Major roads are washed away and some cities still have so much standing water only a few helicopters can land to deliver much-needed food and water.

Some of the children here said they saw children who looked like themselves on the news and that the children looked so sad they wanted to help them.

First-grader Germaine Lane, 6, gave his stuffed "Scar" from the Lion King. "I saw people in the water and I felt sad," he said. "I want to bring them love and joy."

In Coral Springs, Jessie Wernersbach, 7, had questions.

Her mother, Fran Wernersbach, said Jessie giggled initially when she saw children running through the mud with no clothes. When she explained that the kids lost their clothes because of the hurricane, Jessie not only gave away some of her own, but got friends at school involved as well.

"I had parents calling and e-mailing me to ask if Jesse was really doing this," said Fran Wernersbach, who has watched her daughter's idea blossom into a collection of several bags of clothes. She plans to take the clothes to a nonprofit organization to send to Haiti soon.

At Nova Dwight D. Eisenhower Elementary School in Davie, children have been bringing in canned food since earlier this week for the victims.

"I believe it hit our kids, because our stage is full," said Principal Carol Lesser, adding that the kids get daily updates on the situation in Haiti on the school's in-house news program.

At the furniture store in Fort Lauderdale, Simeon Nestor, 9, said he is already thinking about how he can help Haiti when "he grows up."

"One day I'm going to be a scientist," he said. "I'm going to make a special kind of food for people in Haiti. The kind that never runs out."

Georgia East can be reached at or 954-356-4629.

Source: Sun-Sentinel.Com

1 comment:

  1. I've being trying to donate toys to Haiti, but despite of more than 20 phone calls, still could not find where to drop the toys.