For two years, 7-year-old Jermaine Bell saved roughly $100 to help fund his family’s dream vacation to the Happiest Place on Earth—Disney World. But with South Carolina’s Hurricane Dorian evacuees in dire need, Jermaine opted to forgo the family trip in order to buy water, chips, and other necessities for victims of the hurricane instead.
“The people that are traveling to go to places, I wanted them to have some food to eat so they can enjoy the ride to the place that they’re going to stay at,” Jermaine told ABC-affiliate WJBF. “I wanted to be generous and I live to give.”
As a reward for his sacrifice, ABC News reports that Jermaine and his family will still be making that trip to Disney World, with all expenses paid by the Walt Disney Co.
He received the gift earlier this week on his 7th birthday when a team of Disney employees and characters—which included Mickey Mouse—surprised him in his driveway. The heartwarming moment was captured by Good Morning America.
“As a gift to you, we want you to come enjoy a getaway at the Walt Disney World Resort later this month,” Marilyn West, a Walt Disney World Ambassador, said.
The group then showered Jermaine with hugs and praise for his selfless act, before bursting into a rousing rendition of “Happy Birthday.”
According to the Greenville News, Hurricane Dorian was the second-most-powerful storm ever recorded in the Atlantic. Residents in the Bahamas suffered unspeakable losses. However, it wasn’t nearly as devastating to the South Carolina coast as anticipated, though selfless individuals like Jermaine made life infinitely easier for local evacuees.
“Be strong,” Jermaine said. “And if you do something good, good will come back to you.”