KOKOMO, Ind. — It started as a way to spread kindness in Kokomo, but it gained popularity all across Howard County.
Today, the Facebook group "Pay it Forward Kokomo" has over 11,000 members. It began four years ago because of one woman.
“I find it so important to let people know it’s okay to be caring, loving, compassionate and supportive. It’s okay to open your heart to somebody,” said Cat Gray.
It’s something Gray knows firsthand. She said it’s because of others who are willing to help that she was able to overcome her drug addiction turn her life around.
“I had to forget all my old people. I had to stop going to all my old places. I had to find new things to get addicted to. I’m addicted to PIF. This is my new addiction.”
In the group, people can post about items they need or are looking to get rid of.
“A lot of the time it's people who need food, clothes, baby formula, little stuff that is easy to get a hold of,” said member Abrianna Vawter.
This group is different though. Gray says all items posted are donated and completely free.
“Never ever do we charge for anything in PIF, we always gracefully accept donations, but we never charge for anything.”
It’s a movement Gray hopes will continue to spread beyond Kokomo and throughout the Hoosier state.
“Once you ask for help and you receive that kindness and that compassion, you’ll be so open-minded to give that to the next person and pay it forward,” she explained.
To find out more about the group, click here.