A SIX-year-old from Warwick who wrote a letter to homeless people offering them all 85p from her moneybox, has inspired a musical fund-raiser.
Anna Steele-Gardner began asking questions about what it meant to be homeless after a leaflet asking for support landed through her family’s letterbox.
Her mum Catherine said she was almost moved to tears when Anna told her she ‘knew what to do’ before rushing to empty out her moneybox.
She added: “She did it so quietly and without anyone suggesting it.
“I don’t want to sound over the top, but it’s the sort of thing that gives you faith in humanity; to see such genuine empathy and kindness from someone so young.”
Inspired by her daughter’s compassion, singing enthusiast Catherine, along with her husband Bruno’s band – The Midnight Marmalades, decided to record a version of The Rolling Stones ‘Gimme Shelter’ which would serve as a fund-raiser for Leamington’s LWS Night Shelter.
She said: “Last Christmas, I’d recorded a song with The Midnight Marmalades remotely for a charity fund-raiser so when they suggested we do another, I immediately thought of Anna’s picture and her donation.
“The title of the song, Gimme Shelter, fitted so perfectly with the cause and the project was born.”
So far the family has raised over £1,800 for the shelter – nearly ten times more than their original £200 target.
Anna, who is hoping to hand over her letter and 85p in person at LWS, said: “I feel happy that Mummy and the band made the song and that people donated. It made me feel so good because the money we’ve raised is letting loads of people get a warm place to be and a nice tasty meal and hot drinks to warm them up.”
Shelter spokesperson Emma Bird said: “Everyone at LWS Night Shelter is overwhelmed by Anna’s incredible act of kindness, and by the amazing amount raised by her and her family.
“We would like to say a big thank you to Anna, and everyone who donated to her fund-raiser. It’s always especially lovely when children and young people want to get involved with the work we do, and all the volunteers and guests are very grateful.”
LWS Night Shelter is based at St John’s Church Hall, Tachbrook Street, and is open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening. For more information about the services, volunteering and donations visit lwsnightshelter.org.