Hailey Fort (aptly named!) is a student in Washington state with a heart for the homeless. Over the past three years, Hailey has donated hundreds of pounds of produce from a homegrown garden to local charities, as well as hundreds of articles of clothing from friends and neighbors. Taking the efforts in a new direction, the philanthropist recently designed and built a 32-square-foot shelter on wheels for one homeless man, and plans to make a dozen more in the next year.
One more thing: she’s 9 years old.
You can read about Hailey’s construction skills, her parents’ involvement (less than you would think), and her fundraising efforts in this Popular Science article. You can also like her nonprofit, Hailey’s Harvest, on Facebook. I love this story most of all because it defies our expectations. What sort of person builds a house independently for the purpose of giving it away? I’ll bet you didn’t picture a little girl – it doesn’t fit our preconceptions. Hailey shows us how useless those preconceptions are. Not only is she outstandingly generous, she’s also a pretty awesome carpenter.
We tend to write scripts about people based on their age, sex, race, place of origin, etc. The news is full of sad stories in which someone innocent dies because someone else basically followed the scripts. It’s refreshing to challenge the same assumptions with something so cool and so happy.
Thanks to Robin Jaeger.