If Elliott Hutchins gets his birthday wish, there will be a lot of hungry people fed in Clay County from now until March.
The Church Hill Elementary First Grade student will turn 7 on February 8, and he recently told his mother, Felecia Finley, something a lot of parents do not hear.
“He told me he did not want any birthday presents this year,” Finley said. “He wants people to donate canned goods for the hungry instead.”
Hutchins says that his inspiration came from commercials he saw on the Disney Channel.
“They said ‘make your mark,’” said the young man on Wednesday afternoon. “I want to feed the hungry.”
Hutchins’ family says that since he was old enough to crawl, his family pastor said “the Lord had a special plan for him.”
The Project Homestead Food Pantry will be receiving the offerings Hutchins hopes to get from the community over the next month or so.
Project Homestead director Donna Cliett was pleasantly surprised when she heard that someone so young was sacrificing what could be a slew of toys so that families would have food.
“We are delighted that someone this young has such a desire to help others,” Cliett said. “I hope he has a happy birthday.”
Cliett says that the Food Pantry is most in need right now of canned tomatoes, assorted beans, english peas, mixed vegetables and canned fruit just to name a few.
Hutchins has already secured a number of local establishments that will house drop-off boxes for canned goods, including the Daily Times Leader, which will have a special box for cans in honor of Hutchins’ birthday.
Other places that will have boxes are Sunflower, Annabelle’s Antique Mall, A&H Electrical Refrigeration and Faith Baptist.
Church Hill Elementary will be sending letters home with students to give to their parents if they want to donate, and the school will have a box for cans as well.
“We’re hoping to get as many as we can,” Finley said. “We’ll take any and all canned goods.”
Finley says Elliott’s birthday is February 8, but the family will run the campaign until March 8.