Extraordinary People: 8-year-old raises thousands of dollars for charity

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC-TV) - Sixteen thousand dollars is a lot of money for anyone to raise for charity, especially for an 8-year-old. 

Much of Maia Bastianelli's time is spent doing good for others, especially the medically fragile children at Daystar Kids, a pediatric day-respite center in Rochester. 

"It really touched my heart to see all the kids," Bastianelli said. "That's how it all began. I just started making paintings and turning them into note cards so I could sell them and make more money for Daystar. When I heard that they weren't as healthy and I was, i just really wanted to help them in some way."

"She's an incredible kid," Kim Condon, executive director of Daystar, said. "How many children are thinking about others at this age and then also thinking about putting their talents to great use to help other children?"

That's exactly what the third grader as done. She has numerous note card packs for sale, and every time a fundraising goal is set, she passes it. 

"When her grandma first came to me and said, 'we've got this idea for note cards' I thought, at best, $1000, and maybe it would be some stick figures," Condon said. "Really, when we saw the artwork and the quality of the art, we were really amazed. It's just gone crazy and $16,000 later, we can't believe it."

Bastianelli is excited by the $16,000 she's raised for Daystar programs so far, but she doesn't consider herself extraordinary. 

"I just feel really grateful that I can help in some way for Daystar and I think anybody can help, they just have to follow their heart and know they can," Bastianelli said.

Bastianelli looks forward to seeing how much more money she can raise for Daystar.

More details on 'Made by Maia' and where you can buy her note cards can be found here


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