Never underestimate the power of love or how young someone has to be to understand it.
Ahead of his upcoming 7th birthday on September 8, Jermaine Bell decided to put the money he saved for a Disney vacation to better use.
Instead of going on every kid’s dream vacation, he bought water, chips and hot dogs to provide Hurricane Dorian evacuees in Allendale, South Carolina, with something to eat at no charge.
“The people that are traveling to go to places, I wanted them to have some food to eat so they can enjoy the ride to the place that they’re going to stay at,” the Allendale, South Carolina, boy told ABC.
Two handwritten signs were placed on each end of Highway 125 in Allendale to direct evacuees to Bell’s heartfelt generosity in the form of a food stand.
“I wanted to be generous and live to give,” Jermaine said.
The boy’s grandmother Aretha Grant, who was there to help her grandson hand out the food, witnessed first-hand how sincere he was in his giving.
“He actually even prayed for a family while they were here in reference to their house being OK when they got back, so that was really tear dropping,” Grant told ABC.
The first-grader fed over 100 evacuees on Labor Day (September 2) with his donations and said he plans to continue feeding more until evacuees are safely back home, reports WTKR.
Approximately 830,000 people are under mandatory evacuation orders on the South Carolina coast.
As far as Bell’s dream of going to Disney, he still wants to “go [to] Animal Kingdom and see lots of lions and have a Lion King party,” he told ABC.
“This story is now making the rounds down here in Central Florida. What an amazing young man!” a Facebook user commented on a post Bell’s mom, Lauren, shared of her son’s loving act, reports The Daily Mail.
“I am actually a Disney Cast Member,” the user added, “and would be happy to help Jermaine out with some free passes to the park.”
Disney followed Bell’s generosity and announced Tuesday (September 3) the company will donate more than $1 million as well as food and supplies for Hurricane Dorian relief efforts, reports People.
“We’re committed to helping them rebuild their homes, their communities and their livelihoods,” the company said in a statement about helping Bahamas residents.
Disney has special ties to the Bahamas through its Cruise Line, which is leading the donation, and including Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island in the Bahamas.
“The Bahamas is such a special place to us and our guests, and we have watched the devastation created by Hurricane Dorian with concern and heartache,” Disney Cruise Line president, Jeff Vahle, said in a statement, reports People.
“We stand with the Bahamian people, and especially those in Abaco and Grand Bahama, as they recover from the worst storm to ever make landfall in the Bahamas,” he said about the hurricane that has claimed at least seven lives, destroyed homes and left thousands displaced.
“As the needs in these communities are assessed, we are prepared to aid the relief and recovery efforts through funding, the provision of supplies and by providing support to our Bahamian Crew Members.”