wouldn't you love it if . . .

preteens knew what to do with themselves?

I can’t vouch for all of them, but here’s a story about one 12-year old who knows exactly what to do with her spare time!

You see, there are some very happy people in Rachel’s Village near Leogane, about 1 hour’s drive from Port-au-Prince, Haiti these days. Why? Because 12-year old Rachel Wheeler, for whom the village is named, raised over $250,000 to build 27 homes. Many of the new home owners are first time homeowners, indeed, first time home dwellers who had to be taught to fit a key into a lock! And Rachel’s not done yet. She says that she plans to build 20 more homes and a school. So, how did this all start?

A little over two years ago, just after the devastating 7.2 earthquake hit Haiti, Rachel attended a Chamber of Commerce meeting with her mom. She was just 9 at the time, and her mom wasn’t sure that she even understood the presentation. Except to have nightmares from the horrific images in the slide show. And then, Rachel stood up on a chair and said that she was going to help. And she got busy fast . . . Rachel collected funds by organizing bake sales, passing a donation can at homecoming games and selling homemade potholders at her Deerfield Beach, Fla. school, according to the Huffington Post. Not afraid to ask people she knew to donate, Rachel approached her parents’ friends and her church for help and got two large checks from Lighthouse Point Chamber of Commerce.

“Little children will lead us and teach us how to do things,” Robin Mahfood, President and CEO for Food For The Poor, told the news outlet. “It is amazing. She is a tremendous girl.”

And Rachel isa tremendous girl. She wants to build a school for the 250 students who lost theirs in the earthquake. “I want to build a school because they need education to make their lives better so they can learn and teach their own children how to have a better life,” Rachel told Food for the Poor. You might think that she’d take a break, having already passed the  halfway mark in her fundraising efforts for building the school, but she’s determined not to quit too soon. She wants the kids to go to school so that they can improve their lives. “I don’t believe I can snap my fingers and change Haiti overnight,” she told NBC. “I know I have to work at it.” And so, she does. To help Rachel reach her goal, please go to http://support.foodforthepoor.org/site/TR?pg=fund&fr_id=2091&pxfid=4112

 Rock on, Rachel!