Girl Gives 'Smile Boxes' to Children in Hospital

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A special 10-year-old girl has found a unique way to cheer up others by creating "smile boxes" for children in hospitals.

Emily Lites gathered goodies in 50 of her smile boxes to cheer up young patients at Children's Medical Center of Dallas, Texas, on July 25.

"I want to do something to help out other kids," Emily told Dallas reporters. "They get little coloring books."

She came up with the idea after spending time in the hospital when her younger brother, Jude, suffered a stroke and brain damage.

Emily spent many hours supporting her brother, but thought the hospital stay was depressing so she started filling boxes with crayons and other items to cheer up others.

"I've learned first-hand hospitals can be very boring and sad," Emily said.
Her mom said it has been a real success and Emily has already started making the smile boxes to give away at Christmas.

"I think it's very important and therapeutic," mom Jennifer Ortiz said. "With her brother's stroke, things have been difficult for her and difficult to overcome. She's really grown from this."

Each month, Emily arranges a set of boxes for a new hospital, being mindful of patients with diabetes and children that can be harmed from small objects.

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