MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - For much of January the world saw the disturbing images from Haiti, sheer brokenness from a massive earthquake. And a little bit of Alli Middlebrooks' heart broke as well.
"We saw people get hurt. A little boy was trapped and he's not supposed to get hurt," said Middlebrooks, a first grader at Autauga Academy.
"It was the enormity of it. She couldn't believe the devastation," said Alli's mom, Tania.
So Alli got to thinking.
The result? Ziplock bags full of soap, hand towels, toothpaste and a toothbrush.
"Sometimes you can deal with things more clearly once you get cleaned up and we believe that's what a lot of people need down there, bars of soap and cleaning supplies," said Mrs. Middlebrooks.
Starting with Alli the idea to help the Haitians caught on with her class and then the entire elementary school.
That means around 200 elementary students at Autauga Academy got in the act, a random act of kindness that simply grew.
"If she had her way we would have gotten on a plane to Haiti. She wants to help others," said Middlebrooks.
"It made me feel bad. That little boy got hurt. It shouldn't be. He's just a little boy," said Alli.
Classmate Haylee Brown.
"I think it's a good thing to help Haiti because of all the damage," said Brown.
Good to help Haiti but if you think about it, so much is going on here. Little hands putting words and good intentions into action.
"They taught me a lot. You have to think outside yourself and it's not that I didn't want to help but for me I would have been just fine to write a check. She and they showed me that you can get your hands dirty. That will physically help people," said Mrs. Middlebrooks.
A lesson to last a lifetime coming from first graders.
Before Alli bought everything she at first had to raise some money. Alli did just that collecting $600.00 in donations throughout Prattville.
Tania Middlebrooks says the First United Methodist Church in Prattville will ship all the ziplock bags to Haiti this week.
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