Thanks to efforts by Katie Kennamer, beloved dining hall employee Miss Sandra Patterson will be receive a gift this holiday season.
Kennamer has raised more than $200 to present to Patterson in hopes of thanking her for the kindness she spreads on campus. Funds for Patterson have been started in past years as well.
A freshman biology major from Chattanooga, Tennessee, Kennamer said she was inspired to raise money because of a promise made by a fellow student on the popular social media app Yik Yak.
“It kind of started out as a thing on Yik Yak. This guy promised that he would give Miss Sandra $200 out of his own wallet if he got a certain amount of likes,” Kennamer said. “The amount of people that ended up liking it was 300-400. It made me realize how many people loved her and really enjoyed her presence and felt that she had an impact on their lives.”
Kennamer started fundraising on the website GoFundMe on Nov. 19. The link had been shared 272 times on Facebook and Twitter, as of press time.
Donations have ranged from $5 to $20. Kennamer said she only expected to raise a small amount of money and is surprised by how much the community has supported her efforts.
“I didn’t expect to raise [$200],” she said. “I expected to raise like, $50 max. I started it, and within two days I guess I had $200.”
In the description of the fundraiser, Kennamer explains why she feels Patterson deserves the gift.
“Miss Sandra is the nicest woman alive and really makes UGA feel like a second home,” according to the description. “She is amazing and sweet. Not only is she the mother figure for thousands of college students, she is a single grandmother raising a nine-year-old granddaughter, so it would be awesome if we could return the favor and make her Christmas really special!”
Claire Bockhop, a freshman international affairs major from Snellville, who contributed to the fundraising said she hopes Patterson can give her family a great Christmas.
“Miss Sandra is an extremely kind and deserving woman who, in return for treating every UGA student like family, should receive an equally large and heartfelt Christmas present,” she said. “I honestly just hope she treats herself or her family with the money we give her. She deserves to have a fun Christmas with her granddaughter.”
For Bockhop, this is a small token of appreciation for all that Patterson has done for her and others.
“Miss Sandra is such a kind soul with a giving spirit,” she said. “Her random acts of kindness, like reaching out to every individual who visits Snelling and welcoming them, has really inspired me to help other students.”