Amazon donates to nonprofit founded by Pinellas 11-year-old

By Katie Jones, Reporter
Last Updated: Thursday, November 09, 2017, 5:45 PM EST

A Seminole sixth grader’s mission to support U.S. service members got the attention of one of the largest companies in the world, and inspired them to help in a big way.

  • Graci Tubbs, 11, started collecting for service members 2 years ago
  • Effort began as a school project
  • Amazon sent $500 check to "Operation: Military Matters"

What started as a school project for 11-year-old Graci Tubbs two years ago while she was at Seminole Elementary School has evolved into a non-profit called “Operation: Military Matters”.

"They risk their lives for us every day and fight for our freedom," Tubbs said.
 
Graci and a classmate started the effort by collecting comfort items, such as snacks, toiletries, and games.

"It's grown a lot," Tubbs, now a student at Osceola Middle School, said. "At the beginning, it was me taking toiletries out of my own house and sending them over."

At a special Veterans celebration on Thursday, Graci received a $500 check from Amazon to help her cause. She’s already sent out nearly 200 care packages and has a goal of sending 100 more this holiday season.

Graci's mom, Kadi Tubbs, could not be more proud.
 
"She has such a passion for them, and when she does get letters from the military or emails and they say how thankful they are, it just pushes her even more to go further," Kadi said.

Graci has received several photos and 'thank you' notes from the service members who received her packages. She hangs them proudly on a board to remind her of the smiles she’s been able to inspire from thousands of miles away.
 
"I just feel the need to show them that we love and care about them, because we're the greatest country in the world, and it's because of them," Tubbs said.

For more information about “Operation: Military Matters” and how you can help, visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/operationmilitarymatters/ or their GoFundme page at https://www.gofundme.com/MilitaryMatters.

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