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Youngster sets example for all

Samantha Bailey is only 8 years old, but she sets an example that we can all follow. The Sanger youngster was due to celebrate her birthday recently, and she decided that for her birthday party she wanted to do something other than receive gifts from her friends — she wanted to help those in need.

“After seeing a few stories on TV of abused animals and ones looking for homes, she asked me if we could help our local animal shelter,” her mother, Shelley Kelly, told us in an e-mail.

Thus, the family called the Denton Animal Shelter to find out what kind of items were on its wish list. A note including that list of items then went into Samantha’s birthday invitations.

A party was held Aug. 18, and it was a success, Kelly said. Those who attended the party brought a lot of items to benefit the animal shelter.

“The parents and girls were great,” she told us. “They all brought a few things each, and we collected a lot of dog and cat food, litter, treats, shampoo and towels.”

A delivery to the Denton Animal Shelter was made last week and included about 200 pounds of dog food, about 100 pounds of cat food and 50 pounds of cat litter.

Also in the delivery were some “special” snacks for shelter pets. These were intended “to brighten their day till their family takes them home,” Samantha told her mother.

“Her friends and family really backed her up on this, and she did a wonderful thing,” Kelly wrote. “For someone so young to give up presents and make a difference was a big eye-opener, and I am very proud of her.”

So are we.

Samantha has a lot of character for one so young, and her act of kindness is a great example for everyone to follow. If we were all willing to sacrifice something we wanted to do to help a good cause, think of how much better the world could be.

With a home full of pets — dogs, cats, fish and even hermit crabs — it’s clear that Samantha loves animals, and she wanted to make sure the shelter tenants were OK, too, she said. After all, one of her pets, a shepherd-husky mix named Sasha, is a former tenant of that facility.

Samantha said that she hopes to encourage other youngsters to find something they love and to help out where they can.

“I hope kids will learn from her and help their community,” Kelly wrote in an e-mail. “They are our future and they are the ones that can make this world a better place.”

We agree, but like we said, Samantha sets a great example for all of us — kids and adults.

Thanks, Samantha, and happy birthday.