Good News Notes:
“Eleven-year-old Allan Baltz of Jonesboro, Arkansas, is familiar with the foster care system. When he and his twin sister Alice were only four, they came to live with Derek and Lesli Baltz. Lesli said she and her husband became foster parents with the intention of helping kids reunite with their families, but their plans changed when it became apparent that reunification wasn’t an option for Allan and Alice.
“We were really terrified that we weren’t good enough parents to keep them forever,” she told Southern Living. “So, we really worked through that a lot, and it became obvious that they were meant to be ours whether we felt like we were good enough or not.”
The twins were officially adopted in 2015, two years after they first walked through the Baltz’s front door. Last fall when Allan got an opportunity to pay it forward, he made it count.
It all started as a fun quarantine project. Lesli said during the height of the 2020 shutdown, she and her husband were looking for a creative way to keep their kids entertained at home, so the family decided to switch up their hairstyles. Lesli dyed her hair red. Alice went teal. Derek tried out a mustache, and Allan requested a mullet. Lesli figured they’d cut the mullet and shave it off by the time school started back, but when the pandemic dragged on, the mullet persevered. Soon she found herself taking Allan to get it permed for a little extra flair.
“He really fell in love with it,” she said. “He thought it was hysterical. It was hideous, and it embarrassed his sister. Everywhere he went, people were like ‘Nice hair, man.’ He thinks it’s the greatest thing, and he really owns it.”
When friends reached encouraged Allan to enter the USA Mullet Championships competition, Lesli said Allan initially wasn’t interested because he though he couldn’t win. However, once he learned there was a cash prize, he changed his tune.
“He instantly was like ‘Oh, OK. I can do it, and we’ll give the money to kids in foster care,'” Lesli said. “He didn’t hesitate. He didn’t say, ‘I can get a bike, then give some money away.’ It was just instant that he wanted to give it away.”
Determined to win, Allan put on his best suit, grabbed his father’s mountain biking sunglasses, and started posing. After submitting his photo and following up with several weeks of campaigning, Allan took home the top prize in the kid’s division with more than 25,000 votes in his favor.
He split his winnings between two local foster care organizations, Together We Foster and Project Zero, but his impact went far beyond just the $2,500 he donated. During his mullet campaign, Allan was vocal about what he’d do with the money if he won. His giving heart inspired others to do the same, and he ended up raising an additional $4,500 for the two organizations……”
View the whole story here: https://www.southernliving.com/culture/family/arkansas-kid-mullet-champion-donates-winnings