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5-Year-Old Paid off the Lunch Balances for 123 Students by Selling Cocoa and Cookies

"It's all about kindness."

Katelynn Hardee, a 5-year-old girl sold cookies and cocoa to pay off the lunch debts for 123 of her fellow classmate.

It all started when kindergartner at Breeze Hill Elementary School in Vista, California overheard the parent of one of her classmates saying she was having financial trouble. Katelynn's mother then turned it into a teachable moment.

“She started asking me a lot of questions and I just tried to explain to her that sometimes people aren’t as fortunate and that we need to try to be kind and give when we can,” Katelynn’s mom, Karina Hardee, told CNN.

That’s when the kind kindergartner came up with the idea of selling treats to raise money for the families of her classmates who needed financial help, and she spent a recent Sunday making and selling cocoa, cookies and cider.

Katelynn and her mother then donated $80 to the school to help pay off the meal debt of 123 students at her elementary school.

“It’s all about kindness,” her mother said. “Especially this holiday season, and with everything that’s going on in the world, we just need a little bit more kindness out there.”


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