Digital Original: Maumelle teen asks family, friends to give back to community instead of birthday gifts

Digital Originals

MAUMELLE, Ark. – One local teen is forgoing birthday gifts this year and instead asking family, friends and neighbors to help give back to the community.

John Robert Bateman from Maumelle is celebrating his 15th birthday by collecting and donating food to the Arkansas Foodbank.

“I was eating dinner with my family and I was realizing that not everybody has this and not everybody gets to eat and do this every day and every night,” says Bateman. “So I was just thinking it’s just a wonderful idea to do this for others,” explains Bateman.

John Robert Bateman is celebrating his 15th birthday by collecting and donating food to the Arkansas Foodbank.

Bateman says being quarantined the last several weeks provided him with a better perspective on all his blessings. He sees the struggles people are currently facing and wanted to find ways to help.

The young man enlisted support from his family to help with the curbside food donations drive.

“If you can help the less fortunate – people that have less than you – then we can all be okay,” Bateman says.

Word of Bateman’s donation drive traveled quickly throughout the community; with the Maumelle Police Department coming out in show of support.

The officers help raise funds for the drive and provided a “birthday parade” for the thoughtful teen.

Maumelle Police posted to their Facebook page stating they are currently offering special birthday parades for children in the community as a way to help spread joy.

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