GoFundMe

Fundraiser For Mom Who Had To Leave Kids On Their Own While At Work Raises $165K

After the internet heard about one mother who was potentially facing criminal charges after she had to leave her kids on their own while at work, countless people donated to help her raise money to get them permanent housing.

Since the fundraiser started, the woman and her family have been floored by the outpouring of support they have received.

Shaina Bell was arrested earlier this year, with the case attracting a lot of attention.

Unsplash | Randy Laybourne

While she was at work at a Little Caesar's restaurant, Shaina Bell was arrested by police due to the fact that she had left her two daughters, aged 10 and 2, in a Motel 6 room where they lived at the time.

Bell told WKBN at the time: "I had to go to work. My daughter decided that she wanted to stay here. I felt that she was old enough to be able to stay here with her sister for a few hours because my job is right down the street."

Bell also told the police that she has people frequently check up on the children while she is at work.

When asked about her kids, Bell told WKBN in an interview that, “My kids bring me joy. They make me laugh. They’re my world.”

Bell continued by saying, “I would never do anything to harm my kids. My kids are everything to me. That’s all I do is go to work and take care of my kids. That’s all I do."

Even so, the children’s father called the police on Bell, which led to two misdemeanour charges of endangering children. This would result in her spending the night in jail.

In order to help her get out of the financial hole she was in, her mother set up a GoFundMe page.

Although the initial goal was to raise $5,000, news of the arrest inspired countless individuals to contribute to the fundraiser, with the fundraiser now having raised over $165,000!

"A lot of people are saying hurtful things, but a lot of people are also being there for me and showing great support. I have over $100,000 in a GoFundMe account right now. I didn't ask for that, but people gave it to me, and I'm just over appreciative to what's going on," Bell told WKBN.

The GoFundMe page includes a touching message at the bottom filled with gratitude.

After explaining the situation, the GoFundMe page states, “We understand that everyone has a story and we are grateful that you are listening to ours. From the bottom of our hearts we not only appreciate the financial contributions, but also the outpouring of support in the form of kind words and understanding.”

The case shocked a lot of people, causing them to consider how old they were when they were allowed to be left home alone.

Bell was ultimately cleared of any charges, with Judge Jeffrey Adler remarking as to how unjust it was that Bell was arrested in the first place.

"When the matter arose, I was personally offended that this young woman was arrested and taken to jail instead of just being served with a summons. That should never have happened. People with more serious offenses are not being taken to jail at this time," Judge Adler stated on camera speaking to WFMJ.

Shaina has since managed to use the money raised to buy a new house, according to her GoFundMe page.

Danielle Hosey, Bell's mother, posted an update to the GoFundMe page saying that Bell had managed to use the money to find permanent residence, writing, "She is on a journey with brighter path."

Many individuals have pointed out that their own families have been put in similar situations to Bell due to lack of governmental support, with the likes of Thomas writing on Instagram: "My mom used to have to do the same thing when we were young, not cause of abandonment issues, it's because people can't afford child care working at a pizza shop. She wasn't hanging out at a club. She was at work."

Bell also spoke about the event itself

In response to the event, Bell explains to WKBN, “I never set blame on anybody for anything because at the end of the day nobody left my kids in the hotel but me. I’ve cried a couple of times since this situation started.”

Furthermore, Bell states that “I’m just trying to keep a level head and trying to stay strong because that’s all I can do.”

Hopefully, Bell's mother is right, with this being the start of a "brighter path" for Bell.

The level of support that Bell and her family has received has been staggering, and the amount of people Bell's story touched has been unbelievable with even the likes of Arizona Congressman Ruben Gallego sharing an opinion on the issue.

Hopefully this will be the start of a better chapter for Bell and her family.

h/t: WKBN