It’s been nearly three years since the John Makowiec dreamed up an idea for a charity near and dear to his heart. At age 14, he’d already worked in a soup kitchen and helped with food drives through a service club at his school in Winnetka, IL, a Chicago suburb. He wanted to take it one step further and he figured his hobby might provide the means to an end.
He started Cards2Kids with a goal of passing out stacks of sports cards to kids who either didn’t have any or were stuck in a hospital room. Thanks in part to a local hobby shop which agreed to become a collection point and the help of some friends, John’s idea got off the ground. He was featured in a local newspaper and we directed readers to the cause as well. More media came calling and now, after a successful awareness drive outside a Cubs game, Cards2Kids is getting bigger all the time.
Upper Deck helped out with some videos and the group now has several sponsors including supplies maker UltraPro.
Cards2Kids is part of what’s become a mini movement to distribute mountains of extra and unwanted cards to those who might appreciate them. Kentucky collector Jerry Milburn started Commons 4 Kids to collect and distribute cards to youngsters.
As for Makowiec, he’s been getting a lot of media attention lately.
The Chicago Tribune stopped by to see what the fuss was about.
The Glencoe News also featured Cards2Kids this week, grabbing some shots of volunteers sorting through the thousands of cards that come in each week.