Instead of birthday presents, 8-year-old collects donations for Shriners Children’s Greenville

Zach Prelutsky has the story.
Updated: Feb. 15, 2022 at 10:58 AM EST
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GREENVILLE, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - Instead of birthday presents, 8-year-old Katie Taylor from Ellaville, GA only wanted one thing to celebrate -- donations for Shriners Children’s Greenville.

Katie’s Mom Crystal Taylor says they never used to do birthday presents at her party. They didn’t want anybody not to come because they couldn’t find a present.

When Katie turned 5 she decided she wanted to do something.

“It says so much about Katie, about her generous spirit,” said Shriners Children’s Greenville Development Coordinator Andrew Flory.

On Wednesday, Katie presented to the hospital the money she collected this year.

“I wanted to help kids,” explained Katie.

She knows how much donations like this can help. She’s also a patient at the hospital.

Two weeks before Katie was born she suffered a stroke.

“Once she was born she started having seizures and she ended up in the NICU and she actually comes to the Shriners because it affected her right side, so she has a lot of trouble using her hand and her arm and her foot,” said Crystal.

Every six months since she was two years old, Katie and her family make the 4.5-hour drive from Georgia to the hospital for checkups.

“It shows the impact that we have in these kids’ lives is so profound that they want to give back to us. And I think that’s a very inspiring and very humbling thing,” said Flory.

Katie’s hometown of fewer than 2,000 people, as well as some across the country, helped rally together and raise money for her eighth birthday.

“We’re very, very proud of her and it took a lot from the community and a lot from her wanting to do it,” said Crystal.

In 2020, Katie donated over $1,000 and last year over $600.

This year, she blew away her own goal and raised $7,774.88

“It makes me feel good,” said Katie.

These donations are going towards the hospital’s general fund, which is used to buy toys, equipment, and more.

For those interested in donating to Shriners Children’s Greenville, you can click here.