8-year-old boy pays off fellow students' overdue lunch accounts


A single act of kindness has grown into a national effort - and it was all started by an 8-year-old.

Cayden Taipalus is a third grader at Challenger Elementary School in Howell, Mich. He saw another child get denied a hot lunch because there was no money on his lunch account. The child instead was offered a cheese sandwich.

Cayden went home that day and asked his parents what he could do to help. Together, they created "Pay It Forward: No Kid Goes Hungry." Cayden called family, friends, neighbors and even took back cans to raise money to pay off low income kids' delinquent lunch accounts at school. Last Monday, he handed over the fruits of his labor: $64, which paid for around 150 lunches.

As more people heard about his efforts, more donations came in until Cayden was able to expand his project to help children at other schools. Now his goal is to reach all of the elementary schools in his county.

To do that, he and his parents set up a page on the crowdsourcing website FundRazr with a goal of $12,000 by March 28. As of Tuesday morning, they had already raised more than $11,000. Click here if you would like to pitch in.

Click here for more of Cayden's story from the Today show.