SLO4 Home is a local organization aimed at helping Afghan refugees resettle here on the Central Coast.
A local student at the Montessori Children’s School in San Luis Obispo heard about the program and jumped at the chance to help.
Third grader Zoe Healy decided she wanted to help Afghan refugee families as they moved into their new homes.
The inspiration came from a school book report assignment.
“I wanted to be like Malala and help people and then my mom told me about these two families, and I wanted to help them," Zoe said.
In the book, "I am Malala," a young girl refuses to be silenced when the Taliban takes control of her hometown. The book also explores her journey of helping her family, something Zoe said she wanted to do.
“She does come from a family of immigrants. I am an immigrant, and we came here also as a result of war. I was so touched by her taking part in this drive and setting it up and reaching out to all the families," said Annabelle Healy, Zoe's mom.
Zoe, along with help from her mom, sent out a newsletter and reached out to the families at her school. From there, the donations took off.
“People even went out shopping, they reached into their homes and went out shopping for items such as plates, glasses, we got a brand new mixer, and some beautiful furniture pieces," Annabelle said.
Zoe’s mom said they raised about $10,000 worth of donations. Her son also donated his own tricycle.
“If you want to help someone and they need help, find a way to help them," Zoe said.
SLO4Home was able to furnish the home of one Afghan family using all of the items collected through Zoe's donation drive.
The nonprofit said they anticipate each family’s relocation to cost between $60,000 to $80,000. They help with housing, transportation, and any basic necessities.
SLO4Home is asking the community for help with donations to help with these expenses. To donate, you can visit this website.