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11 year old girl hosts canned food drive instead of birthday parade

Posted at 4:59 PM, May 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-07 17:33:17-04

EAST AMHERST, N.Y. (WKBW) — Alanna Bell’s idea of a great eleventh birthday is helping people in need.

"I was watching church from the Chapel and they were talking about humility and putting others first before yourself. And I was thinking that maybe we should do that too," she said

Instead of having a birthday parade and gifts, Alanna asked all of her friends and family to drive by and donate canned goods to benefit Feedmore WNY.

"She thought of it on her own, and she really just wants to help people. I'm just so proud of her that she wants to give rather than receive on her birthday especially at a time like this," said Dalphne Bell, Alanna's mother.

Last month, Alanna was diagnosed with Bell's Palsy, a condition that causes facial paralysis.

"She was really upset about having half of her face paralyzed, and she said I just want to make other people smile for my birthday," said Dalphne.

Fortunately Bell's Palsy is temporary, and soon Alanna will look back on her birthday with a huge smile.

She said she's grateful for her family, who have been helping her with the tent, balloons and the donation collection.

"They have been celebrating my birthday all day, and I'm so happy to have them as my family," said Alanna.