Your Sunday Feel-Good Story: Teenager Hands Over Savings To Out-Of-Work Neighbor

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shutterstock_129748436__1365344998_70.118.110.28I love reading news like this. A 14-year-old boy attempts to give away his savings to a neighbor when he realizes she is out of work. My faith in the future of humanity is momentarily restored.

Artem Smao, of Lodi, California, was going door to door trying to sell newspaper subscriptions to raise money for a school ski trip. When he got to his neighbor’s house she explained that she couldn’t donate because of her financial situation. She had recently lost her job, was having a hard time finding a new one and thought she was well on her way to homelessness.

Instead of just leaving after he heard the news, the boy attempted to hand over all the money he had raised for his ski trip. He tried to give her all the money he had.

I often wonder how to juggle rewarding my pre-teen stepdaughter’s amazing behavior with helping her parents educate her on all of those who are less fortunate. She is really an amazing young woman – so when she ask for things around the holidays we try really hard to fulfill her requests. I think it’s important to share stories like the one above to remind children that there are a lot of people in the world who are struggling – and that generosity is an amazing trait to cultivate.

Smao’s sister told the Lodi Sentinel, “Artem is really sweet. He’s the type who will always do nice things and is always generous.” Well, I have to believe that these parents are doing something right. What an amazing young man.

His actions gave his neighbor the little faith and push she needed to resume her job hunt:

But after enduring more than a year of hardships and receiving little compassion, this one act of kindness reaffirmed her confidence in the people around her.

“Seeing on the news how badly people treat one another, my faith in humanity was restored,” she said. “If kids like this are still around, it gives me hope.”

The neighbor went on to get a call about a new job the week after the incident. The boy went on to resume being awesome – and hopefully raise the money for a killer ski trip. Yes, I am pregnant and sappy – but this story made my day.

(photo: Jakub Krechowickz/