Society

N.Y. Girl, 13, Donates SUV She Won In Charity Raffle

| by Amanda Andrade-Rhoades
Erin Byrnes with the carErin Byrnes with the car

It took 13-year-old Erin Byrnes less than 60 seconds to give away a nearly $70,000 car after winning it in a Syracuse, New York, charity raffle on Sept. 24.

Though Erin is part of a family of eight, she donated the fully-loaded, brand-new Chevrolet Tahoe to the Joseph’s House, Syracuse.com reported. According to its website, Joseph's House for Woman is a nonprofit organization aimed at providing a nurturing home for women facing unplanned pregnancies.

The gesture wasn’t spontaneous. Erin raised $200 by collecting cans and bottles and bought 60 raffle tickets with the money. Though the raffle was restricted to those 18 and older, Erin wrote her last name on the tickets and her parents supported her plan to donate the vehicle.

"We never dreamed in a million years that Erin would win," Jeanie Byrnes, the teen’s mother, told Syracuse.com.

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Though the raffle was part of a charity gala intended to benefit Joseph’s House, those affiliated with the organization are still stunned by the gift. Kitty Spinelli, one of the women who runs the organization, said they’re still deciding how to make the most of the gift.

Erin, who spends every Thursday volunteering at the organization with her mom, hopes to raise more money to buy Christmas presents for the mothers at Joseph’s House.

Sources: Syracuse.com (2), Joseph's House For Women / Photo Credit: Syracuse.com, Alex Smith/Flickr