An 8-year-old Calera student is making waves locally through her own online blog and is using her recent celebrity status to help others. Emmy Valdez is preparing to enter the third grade at Calera Elementary, and like most other area kids, she is enjoying her summer break, but with one noted exception: She is also spending plenty of her break updating her personal blog, or online diary, on YouTube, where she is known as “BigEyedPoo.”
With her parents’ careful supervision, Miss Valdez creates and promotes positive, inspiring and upbeat messages for her audience of all ages. Her sunny and spirited personality shines through in her productions and she has found a way to utilize her newfound “notoriety” to rally her viewers and encourage support for one of the many drives for local charities that are close to her heart.
Recently, the young philanthropist donated all proceeds from a sweet tea stand she operates, to the Durant Animal Rescue Alliance. Mom Britnee Valdez says that their family is an active supporter of causes involving animals and have been a longtime foster family for pets waiting for adoption. Emmy’s choice to assist the D.A.R.A. was a natural one because of her love of animals, her mother says.
Emmy wasted no time in selecting her next target beneficiaries. After just closing up shop on her first successful drive, she began planning the next when her grandmother suggested a fan drive for the elderly and needy of Bryan County. In an effort to help others beat the stifling heat this summer, she will be setting up shop again today (Saturday, July 8) to sell sweet tea and goodies from her stand that will be located at Green Spray between the hours of 2-4 p.m. Mrs. Valdez says they will take any new, boxed fans that the public wishes to donate, but they are primarily planning to use all funds collected from Emmy’s stand to buy as many fans as possible to distribute to those in need. Valdez says that her daughter is already dreaming up several new ideas to assist those in need in her community and is keeping herself and her family very busy with her good deeds.
When asked what inspired their little girl to such acts of selflessness and generosity, Valdez says that she has been a giver since she learned to talk.
“Emmy was a late talker in life due to an impediment that delayed her speech,” she says, “But now, she has totally overcome that and is a straight-A student that wanted to do for others from the moment she began to speak.”
Her enthusiasm and go-get-it nature keeps her parents on their toes and constantly busy helping Emmy to achieve her goals, but as her mother says with a laugh, “We are tired in a good way and are so very, very proud of her.”
Emmy Valdez and her blog, as well as information on her charity drives, can be found on both YouTube and Facebook under the user name, BigEyedPoo.
Maria Moore-Kass is a freelance writer for the Democrat.