9-year-old girl asks for donations to Guilford Co. Animal Shelter as birthday present

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- While many kids may want toys or video games for their birthdays, 9-year-old Grace Reitzel says "I know I didn't need anything else".

So for her birthday party a couple weeks ago, she asked friends and relatives not to bring a gift for her, but to instead bring money or pet supplies she could donate to the Guilford County Animal Shelter.

"I knew it would help stop animals from being put down," Grace says.

In total, she got around $300 and several bags of dog food, kitty litter, paper towels and more.

Her mother, Karen Kimrey, says it's an idea her daughter thought of all by herself.

"Even when she gets an allowance or money from dog-sitting in the neighborhood, she wants to donate all of it. She just has a very giving heart," says Kimrey.

Grace and her mom took the supplies to the shelter today and workers there say they're grateful Grace thought of them.

The shelter's executive director, Marsha Williams, says these types of donations are what keep their shelter alive. "Without the support of the community and people like Grace, we would not be able to save the many lives that we do."

This isn't the first time Grace has asked for birthday gifts for charity. Last year, she says she asked people to donate to a summer camp for low-income children.

Grace says the joy she gets from giving to charity far outweighs the joy she'd get from any toy. She hopes other people will get inspiration from her idea and do the same thing.


  • FaithC

    She is a selfless child who understand that material things are not the most important. She gives us hope for the future!!!

  • Lynn Bemer Coble

    Way to go, Grace! The world will be lucky to be graced with a person like you. You are so giving and so generous. If everyone just gave a little bit, that would help out the animal shelter and all other charities that do so much for all kinds of animals in the world. We can never have too many people, givers, volunteers, nonprofit organizations, animal shelters, foster and rescue groups, SPCA groups, AHA groups, and so many more. There will always be too many animals in need. I’m so proud of you for always giving back in the ways that you are doing. Congratulations!

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