We love getting to share uplifting stories like this. It’s a Pay It Forward story about a MontCo teacher, her sister, her students, and a lesson that we’re all connected. In fact, the kindness we show others can extend even beyond our own lifetime.
Kristina Ulmer is an English Teacher at Hatboro-Horsham High School. In October 2014, her younger sister, Katie Amodei, died in a car accident. After her sister passed away, Kristina found some money in Katie’s wallet. Katie had spent so much of her young life dedicated to aiding those in need. Therefore, Kristina knew the money needed to help others, but donating to a random charity didn’t feel right.
Kristina held onto the money and slowly contributed to it. She won a Chromebook at a conference, sold it, and added the money to the pile. Cash here and there went into the wallet where it would wait for the right moment. Finally, by Christmas of 2018, she had enough to do something that would be meaningful.
The day before winter break, Kristina told her students that she had a special project for them. She told them about her sister and the money, and then revealed $420 in twenty dollar bills. After handing each student a bill, she explained that there one stipulation: They had to use it to help someone in need or to do a random act of kindness.
This is where the magic happens. While the students could have easily spent the money over the school break, they were passionate about meeting Mrs. Ulmer’s challenge. Some donated to charities that were important to them, some gave back to others in the community, and some just did things to bring a smile to a stranger’s face.