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8-year-old helps raise $100,000 for Waffle House worker

Words by Tess Becker

You can help others at any age and an Arkansas 8-year-old, Kayzen Hunter, did just that. 

Kayzen’s family had a ritual where his family would go and grab breakfast from the diner chain, Waffle House, nearly every weekend, and would always be served by his favorite waiter, Devonte Gardner.

“It was about a year ago when they met. My dad started going and Kayzen would go with him. When he came home, he talked about Devonte and how much he liked him,” Kayzen’s mom Vittoria Hunter tells

After building a rapport over their many visits, the Hunter family learned of Devonte’s living situation and lack of transportation.

“We wanted to find something affordable, so we moved into a low-income area,” Devonte said. “We just got tired of infestations with rats and roaches and all this black mold. My daughters were getting sick. No heat and things like that. When it was cold outside, we had to bundle up with like four or five blankets in order to stay warm.”

After learning of this Kayzen decided he wanted to help his friend. The initial idea was to raise enough money to get the Waffle House worker a car with a goal of $500. 

So they started a GoFundMe

“Hi, my name is Kayzen, I am 8 years old,” reads the GoFundMe description. “Devonte is a hard-working dad with two little girls and a wife. He is a dedicated worker and has to walk or get a ride to get to work every day.”

But as many things on the internet do, the story went viral. At the time of writing the campaign for Devonte and his family has raised over $102,000, dwarfing the original goal by a landslide. 

Devonte and his family will be moving into a new apartment soon with a new car as well.

You can still donate on the GoFundMe page here.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Partners of the Goals.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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