As the school year drew to a close, Daken Kramer worried about children who owed money for meals at his school. So Daken, 11, challenged friends, family, and even strangers and businesses to pay off the meal debt at Thomas Ultican Elementary School in Blue Springs, Missouri. He raised $7,370 — more than double his original goal - which paid off all the debt at his school and provided nearly $4,000 to reduce meal debt at Blue Springs High School as well. Nearly 30% of the 15,000 students in Blue Springs School District are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches, but some students still can’t keep up. Overall, the district has a meal debt of around $235,000. “I’m trying to teach my kids that if the people who have the power to make a difference won’t, it’s OK to step up and be that person that will make a difference,” said Daken’s mom, Vanessa.

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