Some say that there are two types of people in this world: bystanders and upstanders.
When bad things happen, do we stand by and wring our hands, wondering how someone so small can make a difference? Or do we take action, secure in the knowledge that “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted?”
For Mac Connatser, the answer is clear. He’s an upstander, through and through.
Mac is just 10 years old, but he was so moved by news reports showing the horrific violence and destruction resulting from the Russian invasion of Ukraine that he decided to take action. Since he can’t travel to Ukraine to help, he looked around his Dallas, Texas community and found a way to help from halfway across the globe.
“I wanted to help the children in Ukraine and I thought that was the best way that I could do it, since I couldn’t go over there and help,” Mac recalled. “I thought that I could do my part from here and I thought that would be the best way to set up a lemonade stand.”
Mac’s parents thought they’d spend more money on lemonade and supplies than Mac would actually earn, but they were quickly proven wrong. The child approached his grandmother about holding the lemonade stand at her church, Royal Lane Baptist Church, and the congregation was incredibly generous. Mac’s grandma herself made the first donation of $100!
Another church-goer forked over $30 for a single glass of lemonade. At the end of the day, Mac had raised nearly $2,000 for Save the Children’s Ukraine emergency fund. He also opened a GoFundMe, and he has raked in over $9,000 so far.
“I’m really grateful and it makes me feel very happy, because I think we could save a lot of lives by doing this,” he said.
Mac has vowed to keep raising money to help children for as long as the devastation in Ukraine continues. Naturally, Mac’s family is incredibly proud of their son for taking action to help others.
“It’s heartwarming to have a kiddo that is this empathetic and generous,” said mom Aubrey Connatser. “It’s also devastating to watch what’s happening in Ukraine. So it’s bittersweet that Mac has taken on this task and that this weighs heavily on his heart. If you ever want a kid to react in an appropriate way to a tragic situation, I’ll take it. He’s a great kid. He always has been, and we’re super proud.”
Mac encourages everyone reading this story to reach into their pocket and donate to help Ukrainian citizens. He urges us to follow our hearts and, whenever possible, be an upstander!
What great advice! Share this story to help Mac take his message even further.
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