AHWATUKEE, AZ - 'Tis the season for giving. That's exactly what one Ahwatukee girl is doing for children who are spending their holidays in the hospital this year.
Twelve-year-old MacKenzie Saunders was a patient at Cardon Children's Medical Center last December, when a little girl named Hope came into her room and gave her a Nintendo DS.
"I thought that was so nice of her, because not everyone thinks about what people go through during Christmas at the hospital," said MacKenzie.
Needless to say, Hope's kind gesture cheered MacKenzie up.
A freak accident, during a soccer game, had injured her spine leaving her temporarily paralyzed.
"I played that DS every single day, whenever I had spare time through the physical therapy and all the things I had to do," said MacKenzie.
Now that she is on the road to recovery, MacKenzie wants to do for others what Hope did for her.
She has started a charity called "Sharing Hope" -- collecting new or used hand-held gaming devices to deliver to sick children at Cardon's.
"If we just make like three kids' Christmas, it'll still be great," said MacKenzie. "It'll still be priceless to see that."
As you can imagine, her father Gary is very proud of his daughter's giving spirit and her desire to "pay it forward."
"Hope had a big impact on us as a family," said Gary Saunders. "And, we'd like to make the same impact, if we can, on another family whose kid is in the hospital."
Hope didn't leave her last name or a way to contact her.
MacKenzie hopes she'll come forward, so she can express her appreciation.
"Thank you so much for everything you've done," she said. "This has really made my whole hospital stay. It really made my whole Christmas."
Donations of hand-held gaming devices can be dropped off at Kyrene Akimel A-Al Middle School located at 2720 E Liberty Lane, Phoenix, Arizona 85048.
Copyright 2010 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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