When the COVID-19 pandemic first started, the Baltz family of Jonesboro, Arkansas, used their extra time at home to go a bit wild with their hair.
Mom Lesli dyed her hair red, while Dad grew a kickin' mustache. Their daughter Alice went with blue locks, while her twin brother, Allan, settled on a tried-and-true classic: the mullet.
Determined to keep it "business in the front, party in the back," Allan wore the haircut with as much swagger as an 11-year-old could manage. When a friend tipped them off to a national competition aimed at finding the country's best mullet, the family was all for it. Allan, however, wasn't feeling it.
"At first, we would show him, and he was like, 'I can't beat that kid, I don't want to do it,' and then he realized there was money involved,” Lesli said.
When Allan learned the top prize for the USA Mullet Championship was $2,500, he changed his mind in a second — but not for the reasons you might assume. Instead of splurging on a gaming system, Allan declared his intention to give the prize money to foster kids.
The foster system is near and dear to Allan's heart. He and Alice used to be in foster care, and they vividly recall wishing for a loving family of their own. Lesli and her husband signed up to be foster parents because they hoped to reunite siblings separated by the system, but they quickly fell in love with then 4-year-old Allan and Alice. They made the adoption official in 2015!
Foster care left a big impression on the kids. In recent years, both of them have requested that people give gifts to children in the system rather than giving them presents. They feel so lucky to be in their forever home, and they want to help other kids feel that love, too.
"I used to be in foster care, and I know how their hearts feel about not having a family, not having what they need like food and someone they can love," Allan said.
Allan entered the competition and wound up winning by about 900 votes! He split the prize money in half, giving $1,250 each to two adoption-focused nonprofits, Together We Foster and Project Zero.
"We were just blown away by his humility, by his generosity, and by the fact that at age 11, he really understood the life change that came for him when at age 4, he found a forever family, and he wants that for other kids," Project Zero founder Christie Erwin said.
Thanks to Allan's gift, children in foster care received special Christmas gifts and other thoughtful necessities. Not only that, but when the public heard about what Allan did, they donated to his chosen charities, too, raising the total to more than $5,500!
"We’re just really proud of him," Lesli said.
Who would have thought a mullet would have the potential to help so many children in need? Allan, we salute you — and your glorious mullet!
Share this story to give this young man a big pat on the back for being so selfless and generous.
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