Minnesota resident Kamryn Johnson wanted to do something positive for her community in the face of the coronavirus pandemic and the aftermath of George Floyd’s death.
The 9-year-old girl decided to make and sell friendship bracelets, and is donating the proceeds to those in need during this difficult time. So far, she and her friends have raised over $70,000 to support local charities, according to the group’s Facebook page. The proceeds are going to Minneapolis food drives and to local businesses that were damaged during riots.
The girls have set up shop in Johnson’s neighborhood in Chanhassen, Minnesota, about a 20-minute drive from where George Floyd was killed on May 25. In addition to the funds raised, Johnson’s parents say the kids‘ efforts are bringing people together during a divisive time.
“We are having conversations,” Kamryn’s mother, Shani Johnson told “Good Morning America.” “Not only are we meeting some of these neighbors for the first time, we are going deep right away into the issues happening in the world right now.”
Here are the girls showing off their handiwork in a photo posted to a Facebook group created for the project:
Their project is officially called Kamryn & Friends: Bracelets for Unity and Justice, and the bracelets are priced between $1 and $5 — although people are paying a lot more than that. People can also now donate through a GoFundMe page set up by Kamryn’s father, former NFL player and local sports radio analyst Ron Johnson. The page has more than $30,000 in donations as of press time.
He talked about his daughter’s initiative on the radio, and the proud dad was overwhelmed with the response from the community.
“It was just a spider web of people hearing about the story and sharing it on social media,” he told The Washington Post of how the project quickly caught on. “We’ve had a lot of athletes and coaches donate.”
On June 7, the former pro athlete took to Twitter to share a short video of the sale in progress, noting that “business is boomin'”:
Day 7: It’s hot as heck… so swimsuits, sprinklers & the trampoline for them. They are working hard but having fun. “Business is Boomin”…
Rumor has it there is a @GopherFootball coach coming later today as well… #JusticeForFloyd #RestoreMinneapolis pic.twitter.com/3vEhwj813G
— Ron Johnson (@3RonJohnson) June 7, 2020
What an inspiring story! Congratulations to these young women on their ambition and generosity.