MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – During the holidays, it can be easy to fall into a gift-shopping, gift-giving frenzy.
But it’s also a time when we see people make donations to those in need.
One fourth grader was so moved by a random act of kindness that he set out to accomplish something even bigger.
“There was this man,” recalls 9-year-old Nate Dreyfus. “He got out of his car, he took off his jacket and gave it to a man on the street.”
He said that moment got him thinking.
“I felt really good inside that they did that, so I wanted to start doing something like they did,” Nate said.
Nate put out donation boxes in his neighborhood in Stillwater.
“My mom gave an email to everyone in our neighborhood to bring coats to our house and put them in a box,” Nate said.
And they did: In a matter of days, 79 coats piled up.
“They said it was really touching,” he said.
Nate and his family donated all the coats to Project Home, a program run by the St. Paul Area Council of Churches that helps homeless families living in shelters.
Sara Liegl is the director of Project Home.
“Nate came in with bag upon bag, filled my office full of coats,” she said. He brought “a monetary donation on top of that, so we could purchase the things we need that don’t get donated. It was wonderful.”
Nate and his sister Anna returned to Project Home on Monday with more coats and jackets.
They learned their original donation has already been given to people who came in, looking for warm clothes.
“It’s just really heartwarming,” Nate said.
Nate also collected about $300 from folks who wanted to contribute to his coat drive.
Project Home in St. Paul accepts donations of clothing, coats and household items year round.
Pajamas are on the top of their wish list for clients right now.