JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A 10-year-old Jacksonville boy who always wanted to learn to sew turned his birthday lessons into a chance to help his elementary school classmates and their families during the coronavirus quarantine.
Michael Murdono went to sewing classes every Saturday for his eighth birthday two years ago.
Now he's putting that birthday gift to good use for his San Pablo Elementary School classmates who are struggling during the pandemic.
As we know, face masks are in short supply.
“When the coronavirus happened and quarantine started, I wanted to make face masks for my whole class,” Michael said.
He not only made his classmates cloth masks, which he sold for $10 each, he also delivered them.
“He was really concerned. He didn't want kids in his class to become sick. So he really just did it out of the kindness of his heart,” Michael's mother, Robin Murdono said.
When the PE coach at San Pablo Elementary heard about what Michael was doing, he wanted some masks for his family, too.
But then Joe Gilbert started thinking about all the families he had talked with.
“One of my jobs now that we're teaching at home is to do weekly wellness calls to some of our students to make sure everyone is holding it together,” Gilbert said.
Gilbert said some families are really struggling. He suggested to Michael and his mom that they use the money from the 10-year-old’s mask sales to donate to the school’s nonprofit, Friends of San Pablo.
“I thought it was really a nice idea to do that,” Michael said.
And 200 masks later, Michael's simple act of kindness has now raised more than $2,000 to provide food for his school's families -- and anything else they might need.
“It's really nice for Michael to see people in his community at the elementary school, people who are laid off and going through hard times and those people are directly impacted by his charity and that's amazing,” Robin Murdono said.
Michael is not making masks for the public, but if you would like to support his work, you can donate to Friends of San Pablo Elementary by going to: https://specovidfund.webs.com/
Robin Murdono said 100% of the money raised will go to families and students at the school.