Here's a great story that features the future of our area and will give us all a reason to believe that there will always be someone there to help you out when times are bad. Bobbi-Jo Guerrette is a 15-year-old girl who has spent her summer serving her community in her own way. 

Bobbi-Jo Guerrette stands with a cart full of items for Go Bags she's making and donating to area shelters. JC/TSM

When Bobbi-Jo started her summer break she knew that she wanted to make sure it was a great summer for her and people she does not know. She began a project to collect items for "Go Bags” that would go to the area shelters and kitchens for anyone who is need of necessary items. Bobbi-Jo said that she wanted to "provide kids with essential items and comfort during their first nights of homelessness.” 

JC/TSM
JC/TSM

After approaching her parents about the idea, she had come up with, they helped her by posting her ideas onto Facebook. A project that she thought would take months, took a matter of days. That's the power of social media. Within hours of the Facebook posts donations of items and money were flooding in. Several businesses donated items such as water bottles to place in these special "Go Bags". 

JC/TSM

The veteran Girl Scout accepted the donations and then went to area stores to buy items in bulk that she knew was necessary. Now is a good time to tell you that I do know Bobbi-Jo quite well, and none of this surprises me. I enjoy that she knows that even though these people need daily hygiene items but she also provided some educational entertainment in the bags. She understands that homelessness is not just an adult problem, but that many of those in our area who are struggling also have children. The Go Bags were donated to ACAP, Sister Mary O'Donnell Shelter and The Hope and Justice Project.

Guerrette Family JC/TSM
JC/TSM

These Go Bags are complete with towels, blankets, brushes, feminine hygiene products, stuffed animals, crayons, coloring books and much more. Bobbi-Jo seems to have been born with a natural gift of giving back to her community. She has a level of empathy that rivals anyone I have ever met. Bobb-Jo was born with bilateral microtia and since then has been to the Los Angeles area multiple times for operations. Just before Christmas of 2009, Bobbi-Jo and her family received a life changing phone call when they were told an anonymous donor would be paying for the procedure and expenses.  

Bobbi-Jo who received a life changing gift, is now spending her life changing the days and lives of others she may never meet. She is a great example of paying it forward and that anything is possible. You just have to start doing!!  

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