7-year-old raises money to help others

Krystle Wagner • Aug 13, 2018 at 2:00 PM

Seven-year-old Silas Masimore is using his entrepreneurial skills to help other people.

For the second year in a row, the young boy used a lemonade stand to raise money as a way to make a difference. Although he offered water, lemonade and treats for free, he invited his customers to make donations. As a result, Silas plans to donate $80 to the Momentum Center for Social Engagement.

Silas set up a lemonade stand in Grand Haven on the Fourth of July and during the Coast Guard Festival.

Silas, who lives in London, visits Grand Haven every summer with his family. His mom, C.J. Masimore, grew up in Grand Haven, and her parents live in the downtown area.

Silas selected the Momentum Center as the recipient of his fundraising after attending a movie night there, where he watched “Coco,” played air hockey and learned about the center’s services.

“I know they need help, so I wanted to help them,” he said.

The center provides recreational and social opportunities for individuals with disabilities, mental illness and addictions.

Extended Grace Executive Director Barbara Lee VanHorssen is also a neighbor of Silas’ grandparents.

When Silas wanted to have a lemonade stand last year, his mother said they encouraged him to donate a percentage of the profit to charities.

“We believe that no matter what you do, all that we receive is a gift from God, and we want to acknowledge that by giving the first fruits of our labor away,” C.J. said. “We also believe that businesses, in their intended form, are entities that contribute to their community's flourishing. We want Silas to experience what these beliefs look like in action.”

Last summer, Silas donated money to the local Habitat for Humanity and Open Hands Legal Services.

Silas built the lemonade stand with his grandpa, and enlisted the help of cousins and brother to run and promote it.

VanHorssen said she was impressed with Silas’ efforts to help people in the community.

“What a great role model, especially for anyone who’s ever thought there’s nothing that they can do,” she said.

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