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You will not believe what this 8 year old did for her birthday

You will not believe what this 8 year old did for her birthday

In a world where drones and phones are the obvious gift requests from youngsters, it is rare to find someone willing to forgo presents to help those in need. Maggie, daughter of Joni Williamson, is one of these rare Hunger Heroes.

Instead of unwrapping presents and toys for her birthday, Maggie Williamson donated her 8th Birthday to feed those in our community who struggle to put food on the table for the 1 in 4 children in our community who are hungry. Maggie has provided enough support for more than 2,000 meals for those in need. She realized that others may not have as much as she does, and was happy to do what she can to help her neighbors in need.

Maggie Williamson holds birthday check in front of carrots

Maggie’s donation will support the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank’s backpack program, which helps to ensure that children who rely on school meals do not go hungry over the weekend.

How to Donate your Birthday to the Food Bank

Many times per year, children and adults decide to incorporate a volunteer event at the Food Bank into their birthday plans. In fact, about 350 individuals volunteered as part of a birthday in 2018.

People like Maggie, however, are less common. It is rare for people to donate their gift money.  The Food Bank relies on financial contributions from generous individuals to rescue, store and deliver food to the community. While volunteer hours and food donations are always needed and appreciated, financial contributions are the most needed for nonprofit organizations like the Food Bank.

  • The Food Bank has 30,000 volunteers each year
  • Growers, wholesalers and distributors donate truckloads of food every week
  • Storing and transporting food costs money, and cannot be done by volunteers

Here are a few great ways to donate your birthday to the Food Bank:

The Check Presentation


Roger Castle, Chief Development Officer of the Food Bank has participated in check presentations with Fortune 500 companies, but it was a special treat to receive a $470 check from someone with such a big heart, birthday-girl Maggie.

“I see the incredible generous support of our community for the Food Bank every day, but when an 8 year old gives up her birthday to help others, it is extra special for me.”

Hunger Heroes are individuals who make a sacrifice of time or treasure to help their community. The Los Angeles Regional Food Bank is honored to have Maggie Williamson as one of our youngest Hunger Heroes.


Start a Virtual Food Drive to celebrate your birthday, or other special occasion >

More Stories from the LA Regional Food Bank

Volunteers Transforming Lives Through Kindness at this Food Bank Partner Agency

Vivian has been volunteering for years at the Food Bank’s partner agency, the First Church of the Nazarene in Pasadena. Learn more here.

The Health Benefits of Volunteering at the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank

By volunteering at the Food Bank, you’re not just helping hundreds of thousands of individuals but also helping your body. Learn more.

Alma’s Journey: From Recipient to Volunteer

This story is about Alma, a remarkable individual who transformed her struggle into a helping hand for hundreds of families in need through volunteering.

College Corps Fellows Help the LA Regional Food Bank Fight Hunger

One of the College Corps Fellows fighting hunger at the Food Bank is Kaitlyn, and she recently shared her story with the Food Bank. Learn more here.

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