OAKLAND, Calif. (KTVU) - Eight-year-old A.J. Jackson is a little boy with a big heart, especially when it comes to homeless people.
"When I see them on the street I feel bad because they are on the street. They don't have any shelter or food or water. I just wanted to help them," said A.J.
For the past few months, A.J., with the help of his mom, has been buying and collecting food, snacks, toiletries— even dog food, putting them in bags and handing them out at sidewalk encampments in Oakland. He says he was a little afraid at first.
"I felt nervous because I hadn't been around homeless people and I didn't know what it was like," he said.
“What was it like?” we asked.
"I don't know what it is like, but it makes me happy inside," said A.J.
A.J.'s mother says he started out by giving dollar bills to homeless people they'd see while driving in their car. Then it graduated into full-blown giveaways.
"It's pretty amazing. Because it is something he really wants to do," said Tamara Edwards, A.J.’s mother.
The boy and his mom are planning to come to Jefferson Park on Saturday afternoon, to give out 50 bags. That's the most he's ever given out.
Since word has spread, A.J. has begun receiving donations. Sometimes its items to pass out, other times it's money. It is all for an eight year-old with a social conscience who signs each bag with the words ‘A.J.'s blessed bag’.
"Extremely proud to say I'm his mom," said Edwards. "God created a child with a humongous heart."
We asked A.J. How long he wants to keep doing this.
"As long as I see homeless people," he replied.