PHOENIX (Pay It Forward) - Reva Stewart is the manager of DrumBeat Arts in Phoenix, a place where customers can find an assortment of authentic Native American crafts and music.

But it's her side job, in the back of the store, that's easing the pain and suffering of hundreds of families.

"It makes me feel really good that I know I'm doing something to help somebody out," said Stewart. "Especially when you have families here in the Valley that don't have anybody else around them."

Phoenix woman puts together care packages

Every day Stewart has put together COVID-19 care packages that she passes out and delivers to members of the Native American community

Every day, for the past 10 months, Stewart has put together COVID-19 care packages that she passes out and delivers to members of the Native American community impacted by the coronavirus.

Stewart saw firsthand how many of her people were struggling when they tested positive for COVID-19, so she decided to do something about it, loading up boxes with soup, tea, herbal medicine, cleaning supplies and more.

"There's (sic) days when I run out of stuff," said Stewart. "I do get scared and on those days, I tell my friends, if I run out, I run out."

All of the items Stewart puts in the COVID-19 care packages come from donations and money Stewart spends on her own.

One of the care packages went to Valerie Francisco's family, helping them in their time of need. Francisco is so grateful that she reached out to CBS 5 to Pay It Forward to Stewart.

"Sadly, there's a greater need than what she can provide, so I thought reaching out to Channel 5 Pay It Forward would really help her in that endeavor."

Valerie Francisco

One of the care packages went to Valerie Francisco's family, helping them in their time of need.

A CBS 5 news crew went over to surprise Stewart recently and give her a $500 gift card.

"I reached out to Channel 5 and their Pay it Forward Program," said Francisco. "Because of all the work that you do and all the hard work I've seen you do, getting collections of traditional medicine and how you helped my family when we had our Covid crisis."

"I've seen you stay here all hours of the night, making boxes, making some donations organized, putting things together for people who need things last minute," said Francisco. "We wanted to give you a gift card for $500 to help with your collecting donations and help continue making boxes."

"If I can help somebody, they can help somebody," said Stewart. "I want to keep it going."

Jason Barry is best known for his Dirty Dining Report which airs Fridays at 6:30 p.m. on CBS 5.  He is also the storyteller behind CBS 5's Pay It Forward which airs every Thursday at 6:30 p.m.
 
 

Copyright 2021 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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