Deana Frey of Maryville, Illinois, adds donations from friends to her $1,000 to make an even bigger impact! With the help of a 7-year-old boy who has cancer, Deana delivers toys to a local hospital playroom and puts together baskets of goodies for child cancer patients.
Next, Deana hears about a local couple who are in desperate need of some help. The family has two children in the hospital—a baby in need of a bone marrow transplant and a 3-year-old son who has suffered a stroke. The family—who lives in a trailer—needs a home that is safe for their sick baby and a reliable car to get them to and from the hospital.
Determined to make a better life for the family, Deana accomplishes the unthinkable—she finds both a house and a car for the family! An auto dealer donates a one-year, prepaid lease on a car. Then, the owners of a house agree to let the family live there rent-free for a few months. After the grace period, the family will get to stay in the house at a reduced price. To get the house in tip-top shape, members of the community volunteer to help fix it up for the family.
"I love my kids. I love my husband. I love my family. And I have a whole new appreciation for what I have," Deana says. "I thank you [Oprah] for what you've given me—not only the gift to go out and help somebody else and make a difference in somebody else's life, but also to make a difference in my own."