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Summerfield Adopted Student Raises Funds for Foster Children

Calli Rancer, a fifth-grader at Summerfield Charter Academy received more than $1,000 at an all-school assembly in December. Rancer’s classmates knew that she needed funds for her project and raised the funds by hosting a $1 jean day.

Rancer, who was adopted as a baby from the Children’s Home Society of North Carolina, spoke during the assembly about how she came up with the idea for her "go bags" project.

Earlier in the year, Rancer started a Girl Scout project to create 50 "go bags" to help adopted and foster children. When Summerfield school leaders heard about Rancer’s project, they wanted to join the effort. That is what prompted the $1 jean day fundraiser. 

Rancer decided to create “go bags" for children who are placed in foster care or adoptive families after she realized they typically only have a garbage bag to put their belongings into before being moved. The county in which the Rancer family lives has about three foster kids per week who need the bags.

“It’s very sad,” said Lisa Rancer, Callie’s mother, who has three adopted children. “When Callie found out about this she knew she had to do something to help make it easier for the children.”

The go bags are sorted by color to represent gender and age groups. They are individually designed for infants, children, and teenagers. Each bag consists of a large duffel bag filled with essential toiletries, a flashlight, a blanket, a stuffed animal, and a book. The kids then use the duffel bag to pack their belongings.

A representative from the Children's Home also talked during the December all-school assembly. The representative shared about the work being done at the Children’s Home and played some videos about foster children waiting to be adopted.

Rancer raised $2,000 from various fundraisers in the community that were held from September to December. "This is how one student with one great idea can impact so many," said Rudy Swofford, principal of Summerfield Charter Academy.

When My Belongings, an organization that also creates overnight bags for foster children, heard about the project, it partnered with Rancer to support her efforts.
“We just want to say thank you for the help from My Belongings,” said Lisa Rancer. “We couldn’t do it without their partnership. It means a lot to us.”

Rancer gave the bags to the North Carolina Children’s Home Society on Jan. 22 after they were filled.
“We are really proud of Callie for what she has accomplished and how she has put a moral focus virtue into action,” said Swofford.