LUBBOCK, TX - 9-year-old McKenzie Baker goes to school and dance class, just like many girls her age. But she is on a mission.
"I just want to make the world a better place and change it,” McKenzie Baker said.
She was inspired to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey.
“I was watching the one day on the news, and I saw the hurricane,” Baker said. "So I ran to my mom, and I was like, 'Mom, can we help the Harvey victims? I really want to help them.'"
She found out the South Plain Food Bank was holding their "From Lubbock With Love" Drive.
"It just, like, made me cry. I felt so bad for them. They lost everything. Like, some kids could have been hurt really bad and some parents could have died with their kids young. So, I felt so sad, and I wanted to help them so much."
Her dad works at New York Life’s West Texas office, and McKenzie knew his office would be a great donation drop spot.
"Her dad was like, you know, you got to talk to Steve, you've got to have a meeting with him and set it all up and ask for permission for that,” Managing Partner at New York Life Steve Perry said. “She did. She called, and we scheduled a meeting."
McKenzie marched into the office, with a pitch and a presentation.
"It was pretty cute,” Perry said. “She comes in, and she is sitting in the lobby. I came out and shook her hand, as if we hadn't hung out a hundred times before. We went into the boardroom, and she told her mom, 'No, you can't come in.' She had a whole little presentation, showed me the flyer and everything."
McKenzie’s feet barely reached the ground at the conference room table, but her pitch worked.
Her drop-off spot gathered around 1,700 pounds of donations and 180 gallons of water.
"The whole lobby was filled,” Perry said. “It was pretty cool."
McKenzie said the day they delivered the donations to the food bank was an emotional one.
“I almost broke into tears of joy because I was so excited," she said.
“It was probably my first 9-year-old meeting, so who knows, maybe she has a future in the financial advising world?” Perry said of McKenzie’s accomplishment.
McKenzie dreams about volunteering more and helping the homeless. She even hopes to plan a donation drive benefiting the homeless around the holidays.
“When I finally got to do that, I was just so excited one of my dreams came true."
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