9 Year Old Pays it Forward With “Lauren’s Luggage”, a Charity for Victims of House Fires

Great friend and Brother Tommy Warshaw sent me this story on Lauren’s Luggage. This is a local charity in Anne Arundel County, Maryland started by a 9 year old after her family lost their house due to a house fire. Lauren Hontz began the charity because here family ended up with more donated items than they needed. Instead of letting the items go to waste, she devised this charity.

Lauren’s Luggage was also able to help out in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

What an awesome young lady! Stories like this need to be shared. Before we know it, the World will be a better place due to actions such as these. Thanks for sharing Tommy.
Lauren, thank you for your service. The Fire Service Brotherhood is proud of you!

Check out more on “Lauren’s Luggage” on their Facebook page

Also Check out the Web Site LaurensLuggage.com

More about Lauren’s Luggage is below as posted on the Facebook page:

Councilman Jamie Benoit, Lauren, and Chief Ray

Lauren’s Luggage was brought to life by our nine year old daughter Lauren in 2012 when a devastating fire happened at our home in which we lost most everything. An odd thing happened in the aftermath as reality hit fast and hard. Life was forever changed and for at least the immediate future as it related to Lauren, and her three older brothers Dustin fifteen, Bryce thirteen, and Ryan thirteen, everything was completely out of the norm. What did not occur to us at the instant in everything lost was their sense of security, normal, and safety. None of these things were tied to lines on an insurance claim form, or something that could be instantly returned. Funny the answer did not come from an adult, website, or the obvious; being that the kids were not “little” I as well as others overlooked the most basic item: A blanket. The thing that each child had kept for years on their beds even if they would not admit it, having come from somewhere, yet till that day of the fire I had never really thought how much comfort and “normal” it brought to each one of the children. Taken for granted, if you will, the small things, a simple everyday item not given its due. It was over the next few days watching the kids fight over blankets at the hotel, and each wanting their own, that the bulb went off “BLANKETS”.
So, I asked for blankets for the kids, and we got them and even some extras, plus stuffed animals. Lauren remarked that “we could save them for other kids after fires” so with that simple remark Lauren’s Luggage was started. Over the following weeks as extras were gotten of things they were set aside, not sure how or when or even where this entire idea was going to take root. The idea was talked over with friends and family that there were things that we as adults could have used that we would have never thought of just after the fire like luggage and other basics. So, making a basic package and helping the entire family seemed like a great idea.
We are just beginning and anticipate that there is a lot to learn. Lauren has put her heart into this and truly cares about each package she puts together. As a nine year old she is dealing with her loss, we as her parents are thrilled to see that Lauren has chosen to make something positive come from her loss. So, enjoy your luggage, know it was packed from the heart and from a little girl who truly does understand what you are going through. Follow her and what she is doing with Lauren’s Luggage on Facebook.