GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.– Brady Schmitz wants to see more kids have a special Christmas and he’s embarked on a mission to be “more selfless” to make that happen.
Schmitz started the initiative in 2010, with about a dozen kids. Since then, he’s established a non-profit called More- Self-Less and his event “I Dream Beautiful” Christmas celebration continues to grow.
“Last year we ended up with 79 kids that we did it for and this year, we’re at 200,” Schmitz told FOX 17 News. “Everything we do is selfishly inspired, and this is a situation where it’s a good selfishness.”
Students in need are selected from five local schools to be a part of the event, based on staff referrals. The kids then get to bring their parents and guardians along to experience a magical night. Volunteers and sponsors are invited to witness the magic too.
“You come down, you get to sit with them at the event, you have dinner with them,” explained Schmitz. “You get to talk with them throughout the course of the evening, really get to know them, see the people in our community that are really in need.”
Volunteers get to watch the kids tear into donated presents and see how their ‘paying it forward’ is a gift.
“What we really try to do is capture and bottle that feeling, that genuine thank you, the emotion involved with that,” said Schmitz.
This year’s “I Dream Beautiful” event will be held Sunday, Dec. 16th from 6-9pm at the David D. Hunting YMCA Downtown.