Sun Prairie girl exceeds birthday goal of making back-to-school packages for low-income families

SUN PRAIRIE, Wis. — As families prepare for the upcoming school year, one soon-to-be 6-year-old girl is trying to make the process easier for as many families as she can.

Brynlee Simler asked her mom, Anna-Cheri Simler, to post a fundraiser on Facebook for a project she called “Better Together.” Simler put a call out for donations for school supplies instead of presents for her birthday.

“There’s a lot of low income families at the school,” she said. “There’s a lot of things that they need so I want to make them feel loved and special.”

Simler put together dozens of boxes of donations into packages that are filled with supplies like pencils, glue, scissors, markers, paper, hand sanitizer, notebooks, white boards, etc.

Her goal was to help six families for her sixth birthday. But she far exceeded her goal and now has enough to help a total of 21 kids.

Anna-Cheri Simler said her daughter’s desire to do things for others on her birthday started three years ago.

“On her third and fourth birthday, she told us that she wanted water filters for her presents instead of toys, because it was more important for ‘her friends that live far away’ to have water than for her to have toys,” she said.

Simler was able to collect 12 water filters to send overseas to communities that don’t have access clean water.  The families, whom she’s never met, now have access to clean water for 25 years.

For her fifth birthday, she held a birthday party and asked her friends to bring presents so that she could donate them to other kids in need.

“I sent most of my toys to the Ronald McDonald’s and I got to pick two of them to keep,” Simler said.

Doing something for others is something Simler said she wants to do every year.

“I want to make other kids feel loved,” she said.

She is also including a $50 gift card to Target in each Better Together package so many of the kids who have never been able to have new clothes and shoes can go buy some for this school year.

Simler and her mom will be dropping off those packages to the CH Bird Elementary school principal in Sun Prairie this Thursday.

Brynlee turns 6 on Sunday.