6th Grade Class Hides Money Around Nashville, Pastor Pays It Forward to Ukrainian Refugee Care Package Campaign

by Amy Myers
(Photo by Wojtek RADWANSKI / AFP) (Photo by WOJTEK RADWANSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

A sixth-grade class in Nashville, Tenn. demonstrated how one small act of kindness can truly help change the world. It all started when a class project turned into a supply drive for Ukrainian refugees.

During a recent episode of The Kelly Clarkson Show, the host invited a Nashville teacher and one of her selfless students to the stage to talk about their good deed that inspired others to help Ukrainian refugees.

“English teacher Lisa lead her students in a project to hide baggies with $5 bills and a class note around Nashville hospitals, churches and shelters in hopes of making a stranger’s day,” Clarkson explained in the caption of her video.

According to Lisa, the idea first came to her when her sister-in-law shared an article about a family that would hide “lucky” two-dollar bills around town “just to make somebody’s day.” Watch the segment below:

So, the Nashville teacher decided to bring this idea to her class and expand upon it. The class made baggies full of five-dollar bills, candy, and a heartfelt class note. Lisa then gave her students the opportunity to explain which areas their baggies would make the most impact. Once completed, the class viewed all of the Flipgrid videos and voted on the top six.

One student chose the state’s Humane Society to encourage people to go inside and adopt a pet. Another one wanted to place a bag outside of a homeless shelter so that someone could buy some food. A third offered the option of a cancer ward because she, herself, knew someone that was receiving treatment.

Nashville Teacher’s Efforts Spur Domino Effect That Benefits Ukrainian Refugees

Soon enough, what was initially just a feel-good deed turned into something much bigger and much more powerful.

One of Lisa’s students, Finnegan, persuaded her teacher to leave one of their baggies at the Hillsboro Church of Christ. When Minister Paul Nance found this little bag of cheer, he decided to continue paying the thoughtful message forward, this to a community in desperate need.

As Nance explained, when his staff found the baggie, they decided to put it towards their “family bucket campaign” in which families that attend the church fill a bucket with all the essentials that Ukrainian refugees would need after leaving everything behind. From silverware to toiletries to coloring books, they had it all in those blue paint buckets. Nance decided that creating a staff bucket to add to the campaign would be the perfect way to spend those five dollars that Finnegan placed on their door.

As a result, the 500-bucket church campaign turned into a 10,000-bucket city-wide campaign. Even better, Kelly Clarkson decided to hand Nance and the campaign an additional $10,000.

“It all started with your five dollars,” she told the Nashville six-grader.