By JENNIFER PROFITT, WEYI/WSMH
FLINT, Mich. (CIRCA via WEYI/WSMH) - More than 9,000 people are homeless in Michigan, according to the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. One little girl in Fenton Township is fighting the problem in a big way.
She started a nonprofit, Snuggle Sacks, providing survival kits to homeless men and women in Michigan.
For most of her life, 11-year-old Addisyn Goss didn’t know her grandfather.
"I met my grandpa for the first time when I was 8 years old," she said.
Her mother, Stacy Daul, said a medical diagnosis brought him back into their lives, along with another shock.
"I was estranged from my dad for about 10 years," Daul said. "About 2015, we got a call from the Indiana veterans home that he was going through cancer treatments and wanted to make amends with his family."
For six of the 10 years he was gone, Daul’s father was homeless.
"Addisyn kept pushing and pushing. I was that mom who just said, 'We'll do something, we'll do something,' but we never had the time to, or so we thought, until we made the time," Daul said.
That first year, Addisyn collected basic supplies, such as snacks, shampoo and socks. She bagged them up and donated them to a homeless shelter. Their first donation helped about 40 people, but today, her operation is so big, her entire family is involved, including her brother and sister.
They donate more than 1,000 Snuggle Kit survival sacks every month, all while juggling school, jobs and extracurriculars.
"They’re still dedicated to being down here two to three times a week," Daul said. "They're definitely doing the leg work in the evening; we definitely stress school first," Daul said.
Addisyn is proving that anyone can make a difference if they put their mind to it, no matter how young.
"I’m probably going to go to school for business,” she said. "If that doesn’t work out, I want to be a veterinarian.
"This is going to be my main priority; I want to go to school for business and continue Snuggle Sacks."