Gordon B. Hinckley once said, “The happiest people I know are those who lose themselves in the service of others.” Yesterday, I had the opportunity to partake in a Pab’s Packs pack-out along with a handful of other employees here at Morrie’s Automotive Group. I can attest to Hinckley’s quote, giving back made for a nontypical, amazing Tuesday.
Pab’s Pack is a non-profit organization ran by teenagers, Pia and Abby. The organization packs and donates backpacks filled with gifts such as Pabby the Penguin, blankets, stress balls, lotion and Vaseline, notebooks, and even trendy fidget spinners. In 2013 Abby was diagnosed with type one diabetes, and the following year Pia was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma. These girls authentically understand the difficulty of illness and spending time in the hospital. Thus, their intention behind the backpacks are to provide comfort and encouragement to other teens who are chronically ill, exemplified by the girls’ slogan, “We’ve Got Your Back”.
After the girls explained their organization’s story they showed us the ropes. Each table in the room had a different item set on it. We started by grabbing a backpack and placing a description of Pab’s Packs at the back of it. From there we moved table-to-table, placing one of each item in the pack, ending with a hand-written letter. The packs were then put in cardboard boxes to be immediately shipped to a summer camp where they would be presented to kids upon arrival. How cool is it that the help we provided was going to be changing kids lives the very next day!?
One of my favorite comments Abby made when explaining their organization to us was that the handwritten and decorated notes are the most important item in the backpacks. She emphasized the importance of the message avoiding any mention of illness, and instead focusing on lighthearted conversation. For example, Abby shared that she likes to write that one of her favorite things to do is bake. Her note then follows with the question, “What’s your favorite baked treat?” I think this is an incredible detail that means a lot to teens who undoubtedly are sick of talking about medicine and ‘adult’ things.
Pab’s Pack is an amazing organization lead by amazing girls, I absolutely loved partaking in the pack-out. I walked out of the room craving to do it again and am so excited to be getting a group of friends and family together to do a pack-out for my birthday in late July! If you’re interested in helping the girls reach their goal of donating 2,500+ packs this year, don’t hesitate to reach out.