AUSTIN, Texas - Hundreds of upcycled Halloween costumes were distributed at an East Austin elementary school Wednesday morning. The donation was orchestrated by a St. Stephen’s 7th grader.
Alexis Berson, 13, founded the nonprofit "Kostumes for Kids" in the fifth grade.
"I was shopping for my own costume and I noticed the price tag on it and I was like ‘wow, that's sort of really expensive for one or two time use…’ Some people don't even have the ability to buy their next meal." Berson said.
Her group was forced to halt operations because of COVID-19. Thursday morning the organization was able to hold its first distribution event, handing out approximately 300 costumes at Blackshear Elementary School. The costumes were collected two years ago. They were dry cleaned and stored by Westbank Dry Cleaning.
"Know that you can really do anything. Ideas can come from anything, and helping people is a really important thing. And so just if there's something that you feel could help people and you have the ability to do it, it's worth the shot because it could make someone really happy." she said.
Berson worked with groups such as Generation SERVE and Neighborhood Longhorns to mobilize a large volunteer network. The UT women’s basketball team and Silver Spurs handed out the costumes Thursday.
5th grader Remy Ntwali told FOX 7 Austin he was "excited." He explained, "I get to meet the basketball team and I get a free costume."
Still, Ntwali said he "was nervous, really nervous, ‘cause like I was so shocked that they’re actually there and they’re like so tall."
"Kostumes for Kids" has additional donation events planned this month. After Halloween they will begin collecting costumes for next year. They hope to collect at least 1,000.
"First of all, that they chose our school in particular to do this for just makes me feel grateful for the fact that I'm in the school and that these people are willing to help put our costumes together for us and it's just really, really amazing." said 5th grader Olaia Gomez.
Fauci: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas gatherings safe for vaccinated people
Mother goes all out on Halloween decorations for homebound son
Fauci OKs trick-or-treating this Halloween
Celebrate Halloween in Kyle with festivities all October long
DOWNLOAD: FOX 7 AUSTIN NEWS APP
SUBSCRIBE: Daily Newsletter | YouTube
FOLLOW: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter