At ten years old, Sabrina Martínez has a personal mission that has taken her to the streets of Charlotte with sandwiches and water for the homeless.
She is recruiting an army of volunteers to help her.
“When I was 4 years old, I went to New York and took a walk at the park where I saw a homeless person and I felt very bad. We gave him food and I felt much better,” Sabrina said.
Her father, Luis, said that Sabrina always had the capacity to feel what another person is experiencing.
The Martinez family visited food pantries and other organizations, and her father tried to channel her empathy in the best way possible.
However, it wasn’t enough for this young superhero.
She proposed making a few sandwiches at home for the family to deliver them to the homeless in uptown Charlotte.
They realized they needed more sandwiches.
At her young age, Sabrina has founded her own organization called Homies for Homeless, to help those in need.
Every weekend, she devotes part of her time to prepare sandwiches with her parents that she then hands out to the homeless in the streets of Charlotte.
“I prepare them at home. I prepare around 50 with white bread, cheese, ham and egg. We also give out water and chips,” she said.
Her initiative has attracted other kids like her to help in the preparation and bagging of items.
Sabrina, who was born in Miami of Venezuelan parents, says she is always aware that a lot of the homeless people she helps have lost their jobs, and that the thought of them going to bed hungry saddens her.
She says she always remembers with joy the gratitude shown to her by those to whom she provides a meal.
Sabrina’s dad has been by her side each step of the way.
“The people we help are very appreciative, especially when they see her, and they see that she’s a kid with empathy towards them. This also helps her to see another side of life,” he said.
In this way, Sabrina shows us how a sandwich can translate into hope for our neighbors.
“A few months ago, we met a person in need who was from Venezuela and he came up to us when we were handing out the sandwiches,” Sabrina’s father said. “He told us that his children were abroad, and that he was alone with little resources and that the sandwich for him meant his meal for the day.”
Through her action, Sabrina is not only helping the homeless, but also inspiring others to help those in need. At 10 years old, she is bridging the disparity gap in Charlotte through love towards her neighbors.
If you have an inspiring story to share, email Kevin Campbell, WSOC-TV/WAXN-TV/Telemundo Charlotte public affairs manager, at Kevin.Campbell@wsoctv.com.
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