HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Heat Up Huntsville began as just another idea in the mind of a 12-year-old girl. Addyson Humphrey said she was concerned for the people living on the streets.
“So many times I see them and its just like ‘wow, that's terrible,’ said Humphrey. “Other times I just express it and I just cry."
Humphrey said she knew it was going to be nearly impossible to completely end homelessness in Huntsville, but she knew there had to be something she could do.
"I could sit back and be sad for them, or I could do something about it. So I decided to do something for them,” she added.
It was at that moment she went to her parents with her idea.
They said her idea initially came in the form of her Christmas wishlist.
"This started as ‘Dad, I want to ask grandmas and grandpas and aunts and uncles, instead of just Christmas gifts, can we do something different? Can we just gather coats and blankets, and gloves and scarves to hand out to homeless people in the city of Huntsville,’” explained Addyson's dad, David Humphrey.
And once he posted Addyson’s idea on social media, those posts turned up the burners for Heat Up Huntsville.
More than four hundred people are homeless in Huntsville on a given night, and Addyson just can’t believe her idea is making such a large impact.
"It made me so excited and overwhelmed to see how many people really want to pitch in and help because it makes me realize how many people really care,” stated Humphrey.
And her dad said Addyson doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
"As we've seen this thing grow very rapidly, I've made phone calls to people who manage finances, some attorney friends of mine saying, ‘Hey, we may need to start this thing as a full-blown non-profit,’” said David Humphrey.
And Addyson has a message for those in need of a little help:
"I just want you to know that you're not alone in this situation, and there are people that are so willing to help you."