July/August Inspiring Kid in the Community: Nolan Fleming
● By Digital Media Director
Every kid should have enough food to eat, and beyond that, deserves to celebrate their birthday when that time of year rolls around. But, not every parent can afford these for their child. That’s why local teen Nolan Fleming is passionate about his work. After visiting Minneapolis and seeing what was happening with the Non-Profit Organization, Simon Says Give, he started a local chapter right here in Sioux Falls, with the intention of giving to every less fortunate kid.
Simon Says Give is an organization where the kids themselves decide in what ways they can give back to local kids in need, and then they get busy with projects doing just that.
Nolan says that the reality of our local community is that 1 in 10 kids aren’t able to have a birthday party, and 40 % of kids are receiving free/reduced price school lunches because of their family’s financial state. This is why he has focused his energy on projects like “Birthday in a Bag” and “Make a Meal/Take a Meal” with Simon Says Give. “Birthday in a Bag” provides kids in need with essentially a ready-made birthday party in a bag. It includes everything from cake mix, frosting, plates, napkins, utensils, and even birthday invitations, decorations, and a couple gifts! Make a Meal/Take a Meal teaches children how to make a healthy meal, and sends them home with the ingredients to then make it for their family.
Nolan proves that no matter your age, if you can see the needs in your community, then you can take action to make a difference. He works to involve other kids so that he can share the spirit of giving. In fact, his best friend Donnie and him are quite the dynamic duo in their community. Together, they have helped pack birthday bags for kids in Sioux Falls and even attended the World's Largest Birthday Party at the Mall of America, where they worked with other kids to pack 2,500 birthday bags!
When asked about his own birthday, Nolan says “My idea of a dream birthday celebration is to have every kid in need get one gift because they aren’t as fortunate as I am, and I already have everything that I want, so I would give things instead of wanting to get things.”
Keep up the caring and sharing, Nolan! You inspire us all to give a little more!