CINCINNATI – Giving to others is something most think about during the holidays, but 4-year-old Elizabeth Klocek knows the need is just as great during the rest of the year.
"Elizabeth takes her birthday money, money she gets from grandpa and grandma, and just makes her way through the family," said Priya Klocek, Elizabeth's mother.
Elizabeth stashes away savings from her family for months, making a secret fortune. However, she does not keep it.
"She's never taken the money and said she wants to buy candy, stickers, toys. It all goes into her piggy bank," said Elizabeth's mother.
Priya Klocek takes Elizabeth to Sam's Club twice a year to buy her favorite foods to donate to the Freestore Foodbank. Elizabeth's recent donation totaled 450 pounds of found, or approximately 374 meals.
"Because we thought babies would like it and babies would love it," explained Elizabeth.
Hungry families rely on the Foodbank every day. Donors like Elizabeth feed more than 250,000 families in the Tri-State every year. More than 110,000 of those people are children.
"Hunger is with us 24/7, 365. She helps us remember that every day," said Kurt Reiber, President and CEO of the Freestore Foodbank.
And Elizabeth hopes she can inspire others, not simply be a donor.
"Even if it's a can of beans or broth or soup that can bring warmth to a family and conversation and nourishment, that's really what we're hoping for," said Priya Klocek.
"If 4-year-old Elizabeth can help out, any kid can help out, any parent can help out," said Reiber.