Joy Factor: Teacher Using Wedding Registry to Help Homeless Students

Teacher - Rickee

Joy Factor is a feature that celebrates moments that will bring a smile to your face! Be it an uplifting news item, a funny viral video, or an instance where good emerges out of bad situation, Joy Factor strives to shine a light on the best this world has to offer. 

Often times when people get married, they are showered with gifts, money and bundles of goodwill. As much as many people love to receive new things, or financial support, there are some who have a different view of the big picture. For instance, school teacher Rickee Stewart.

Stewart, who is to be married on September 9, has opted to forego receiving wedding presents in order to help out the more than 100 homeless students who attend her school, Copper Hills High School in Utah.

This wonderful woman learned about the plight of these students when the school set up a food pantry for those whose families couldn’t afford to properly feed them.

“One of my students walked up very quietly and said, ‘so, my mom wants to know how I can actually get some of that food,” recalled Stewart. “[The issue] is very real.”

As it pertains to her wedding gift initiative, Rickee recently told KSL-TV that she has registered for tennis shoes, Converse, backpacks and winter coats for the aforementioned homeless students. While her individual generosity is amazing unto itself, an outpouring of societal support has also taken shape.

In addition to those on Stewart’s wedding guest list, many strangers – including people who don’t even live in Utah – have made donations.

Moving forward, Stewart aims to continually promote philanthropy by making food bank donations part of her classroom curriculum.

“My hope is that we get to not only have this amazing wedding and start our lives together,” explained Stewart, “but that we are able to put some warmth on all those kids.”

Click here for more information on Stewart's kind-hearted cause.

-Adam Grant

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