It is obvious children learn from listening to others, and especially their parents. Here is one example of how a young boy (named Blaine) learned early the personal gratification of “giving.”

Toward the end of the school year, Zach with the Humane Society of Southeast Missouri, visited Blaine Schlosser’s* school – St. Augustine in Kelso, Missouri. The students learned about the need for volunteers to walk the pets and socialize with them. That is just a sampling of the “volunteer” efforts that help the local shelter. Blaine learned he could also help by donating money or supplies. That got Blaine to thinking. For his 7th birthday he decided to celebrate with a non-traditional birthday party. Instead of bringing gifts for him, guests were invited to bring donations for the Humane Society. What excitement that created! His 2nd grade classmates, family, and friends brought items for the cats and dogs (food, pet toys, and cleaning supplies) PLUS cash donations. Then on June 28th Blaine and his little sister Brynn visited the local Humane Society with donations of $100 in cash and items from the shelter’s wish list.

Thank you, Blaine, we know the pets appreciate your thoughtfulness. His Mother, Julie Schlosser, recently discovered that his effort of kindness kicked off even more giving. “Other kids started thinking of where they could volunteer and donate for their birthday.” What a blessing of ‘paying it forward’ Blaine’s idea has started. Good job to all who donated and to the lessons learned in sharing!

*Blaine is the son of an Alliance Bank employee.