Mother-to-be helped by random act of kindness


CHAMPAIGN — A single mother-to-be says her baby will be better off, thanks to a random act of kindness.

While shopping an online garage sale, she says she found a portable playpen at a great price. But by the time she tried to buy it, it was already sold. That’s when the seller stepped in.

The seller’s original post said they were willing to give it away to someone who needs it. In this case, it was too late for that, but they decided to step in and give her a hand anyway.

Deserai Miller says she was only doing a little spring cleaning. Her kids, including 6-year old daughter Avery, grew out of their old Pack-and-Play, so she listed it on a garage sale Facebook page.

“I was not necessarily needing to sell it,” says Miller. “I just was hoping to get rid of it. So the posting said, here’s what it cost, or if you need a Pack-and-Play, but you can’t afford one, I’m willing to give it away for free.”

19-year old Jill Warnick is expecting a baby girl this summer. She’s making ends meet  by working at McDonald’s and living with her parents.

While shopping for the baby, she stumbled upon the ad. Even though money’s tight, Warnick says she had every intention of buying it.

“They messaged Deserai,” says Warnick, “but apparently, it’d already been claimed for.”

An acquaintance reached out to Miller, explaining Warnick’s situation and her need for the item. But, by that time, it was already sold.

That’s when Warnick got a surprise. Miller sent her a gift certificate to Babies R Us, and some children’s books completely free of charge. 

“I didn’t really know what to say, or how to thank her,” says Warnick. “I was just really shocked.”

“It feels like not too big of a deal,” says Miller. “But I have a pretty strong faith in God, and our belief is that if there’s someone in need, you give.”

Miller says she’s familiar with the need. Her sister also had a baby when she was a teenager.

“I can understand what it means to be a parent and not have all of the resources you need for your child.”

“It means a lot,” says Warnick. “Not many people would go out of their way and use the money they got off of that Pack-and-Play to get somebody else something.”

Warnick says she doesn’t know how she’ll spend the gift card yet, but she will definitely make good use of it. She says it depends on what she still needs after a baby shower in a few months.

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