Seven-year-old Cody Mitchell was watching the evening news on television with his grandmother one night at their Glendale home when a reporter began talking about a 12-year-old boy who had been holding a charity book sale in his neighborhood.
He was holding the drive for the fifth consecutive year – something he started when he was only seven.
Cody watched. He smiled. And then he looked at his grandmother.
“I could do that,” he said.
And apparently, the first grader from Challenger charter School can “do that.” Now several weeks into his drive, Cody has collected over 200 books from family, friends and fellow parishioners at Desert Valley Light & Life Church.
Cody selected St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance as the organization he wanted to help because “people really need food right now” and will hold the “Books for Food” sale in his driveway at 5638 W. Greenbrier Drive on Saturday, Aug. 29.
“He’s a great kid and he really cares about people,” Cody’s mother, Elizabeth Mitchell, said. “His grandmother lives with us and Cody is always checking on her, making sure she doesn’t need anything and trying to help out. And when he saw a chance to help more people, he really got excited.”
ody is getting the word out and getting people excited about his drive. A fellow parishioner at his church who has visited St. Mary’s Food Bank in Glendale made Cody a T-shirt that reads “Help Me Feed the Hungry!!” for him to wear when speaking about the event and show off on the big day.
Paperback books will be sold for 50 cents, or one non-perishable food item, with hardbacks going slightly higher. Cody has already collected several bags of food from people supporting his effort and he plans to take the money raised from the drive to a nearby Costco market where can go shopping for the items the Food Bank needs the most.
“He’s putting all his time into collecting books, talking to people about how they can help and having the biggest drive possible,” Elizabeth Mitchell said. “As a mother, it makes you proud to see your child go to that much effort to help people.”
Cody will bring all the food he raised through the event to St. Mary’s in September, and he has also been invited to speak at the SMFBA Board of Directors meeting to talk about his accomplishment.
Anyone interested in donating books or making a cash or food donation to the drive can call (602) 843-0370 until Aug. 28 – the day before the event.