America Strong: Local couple’s YouTube following donates hundreds of toys to kids in need
BONNERS FERRY, Idaho — A local couple is using social media for good.
Jeremy and Melissa Souza have a growing YouTube channel and are now using their platform to help others this holiday season.
The Souza family wanted a simple life, which is why they say they uprooted and moved to North Idaho. Simple living is also the inspiration for their YouTube content.
With the help of their 300,000 followers, they are giving back to their community in a big way.
“What an awesome opportunity and we wanted to use that for good,” Melissa said. “When blessed with a platform, use that to help your local community if possible.”
The Souza’s mission was simple: a holiday toy drive for sick children. They put out the call and what happened next was completely unexpected.
They received an outpouring of gifts, all collected for pediatric cancer patients and their families.
“We didn’t fathom this kind of response. This is three times what we thought was going to happen,” Melissa said.
“Just very, very encouraging to see the way that folks have responded and gotten on board with our cause,” Jeremy said.
The Souzas are receiving hundreds of gifts on their doorstep every day. They’ve received so many packages, they’ve actually become good friends with their delivery driver.
“It’s become very fun. He’ll show up and the first question I always ask him is ‘How many today?’ And the numbers we’ve been getting have been incredible. One hundred plus packages on a daily basis,” Jeremy said. “It’s been overwhelming but in the best sort of way.”
At the end of the month, the Souzas will load up their trailer and deliver the gifts to the American Childhood Cancer Organization Inland Northwest. The non-profit supports children with cancer and their families by providing education, practical hands-on support and financial assistance during treatment.
“Anything we can do to help these kids and these families, I just think it’s a great cause and it’s very worthwhile,” Jeremy said.
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