When she was a teacher, Sharan Hinkle says she often saw students from poor families. She wished she could help them and sometimes did buy them things with her own money to help out where she could. So when she gets $1,000 from the Pay It Forward Challenge, she looks for a teacher like herself who can help the children they see every day. Her idea is to give the teacher a fund to help many families.
But when Sharan offers the money to Amy, a music teacher at Pleasant Ridge Elementary in Cincinnati, Ohio, Amy asks if she can give all the money to one special family. Of all her students, Amy thinks the Carter family is most deserving. Diana Carter is a single parent raising seven children, including a nephew! The Carters live in a Habitat for Humanity house. Four of the seven children attend Pleasant Ridge, and three of the children will be in school soon enough. To make a better life for her family, Diana is going to beauty school full-time to get a better job. Still, she finds time to visit the school to stay connected.
Sharan visits the Carters in their home to present the $1,000 gift card. "This was a great experience," Sharan says. "It has made me rethink what I want to do for charity. We have made a list of good causes and now just have to decide what our next step will be."