8-Year-Old Donates Birthday Presents

8-Year-Old Donates Birthday Presents
By: Crystal Britt
Local charities continue to report, there's a growing need for help this holiday season.  An eight-year-old girl from Kelso might just lead the way when it comes to that needed generosity.  On Mariah Dirnberger's birthday she asked her friends to bring gifts, not for her but for kids at a local women's shelter.  It's only the beginning of what she hopes will be a domino effect.  
At St. Augustine School in Kelso, Mariah Dirnberger and the rest of her second grade class work on the basics.  Mariah's sharp at not just spelling, but writing and arithmetic. But, Heartland News didn't show up to highlight scholastics.  We wanted to focus on something you can't really learn from a text book....character, and Mariah's character shines brightly.
Mariah turned eight this past October.  All the boys and girls in her class were invited to a party at the local bowling alley.  They brought gifts, but those gifts aren't at Mariah's house.  They're now under the Christmas tree at the Safe House for Women in Cape Girardeau...all Mariah's idea.
"I decided it because there are kids out there who have nothing," said Mariah. 
"She's always thought of other people and what they have and don't have and she always gets everything she needs so she was looking at giving to others who don't have anything." said Kim Livingston, Mariah's Mom.
When Mariah was asked if it was hard to give up all those presents she quickly said, "No Maam".
"Her father and I are so proud of her for doing this.  It's a wonderful thing.  She's got a good heart," said Kim. 
It's also something Linda Garner from the Safe House could also see.
"She was so genuine, you could tell her willingness to give was from her heart.  She feels she can make a difference.  She's one eight-year-old little girl, but she can still make a difference," said Linda Garner.
Mariah already has plans to do the same at her ninth birthday party.