LAWRENCE COUNTY, Ala. - The Autism Unit at East Lawrence Elementary School is a classroom full of very special individuals -- kids in kindergarten through 4th grade, who form a tribe of friends.
Today they're on a special Christmas field trip to Build-A-Bear Workshop. It's special, because it was a gift from the community.
"We've got kids that don't necessarily get to get out a lot, we've got some that may not be in the highest economic status that don't get to do things like this," said assistant principal Lee Roberts.
It all started with a simple Facebook post-- a teacher asking the community to sponsor a child for the trip. The community answered with enough donations to provide every child with whichever animal they want, including their choice of an outfit, shoes, and a sound to go with it.
Jaxson, a 9-year-old, chose to build a stegosaurus appropriately named "Steggy."
And there's Brooke, a little girl with a very rare neurological disorder. Some days are hard for Brooke, but today was a good day. She's taking home her brand new princess kitty named "Kisses."
"Just to get to see her enjoy this... it meant so much," said Brooke's mom, Melissa Kitchens. "Because a lot of these kids, they don't get to do these typical field trips."
"It's just fantastic for them, and seeing them run around and play a bit, it's fun for them but it's fin for all of us," Roberts said.