RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A room filled with salt certainly wouldn't make most kids wish lists, but for 3-year-old Phillip and other children with cystic fibrosis, it's a life changer.
"It's very beneficial almost immediate you can see a difference in him," explained his mother, Catherine Hopkins. "A lot of cystic fibrosis patients have a constant cough. They have a buildup of mucus which causes the cough, but it also causes bacteria to get trapped within their lungs and they end up in the hospital and on antibiotics constantly. What that salt does is it dries up all the mucous. He can breathe better."
For years, Phillip got salt therapy when the family traveled to cystic fibrosis conferences in Florida. Soon he'll have his very own at home, possibly the first in Virginia and the Hopkins have their son's t-ball coach, Malcolm Case, to thank.
"He immediately came on Facebook and says you have a carpenter, that changed everything," said Hopkins. "This salt room him being able to go in on a daily basis it's going to keep the infection at bay."
The family was relieved they didn't have to wait to raise $14,000 to buy a salt cabin.
"In tears, because you don't expect someone to offer their time when they when they already have so much going on," Hopkins said.
"I've been floored by the generosity of others and how many people just truly care and Malcolm he's right up there in that top tier," said father David Hopkins.
"He will not accept any money from us for anything that he does for Phillip, so this was kind of a way that he has to take it," said Catherine Hopkins.
The Hopkins arranged to meet Malcolm at the middle school where he thinks there's a teacher conference.
"We have you here for the Acts of Kindness, because we think you're wonderful and it's for the salt cabin, for helping us build the salt cabin. We love you guys so much and Phillip has something for you," said Catherine,
"1 money, 2 money, 3 money," said Phillip as he handed him the $300. "Thank you for my salt room."
"I felt god was speaking to me and he told me that I needed to do this and I wanted to do it for them," said Case. "They're a great family"
It's what the Hopkins say about the Case family: mom, dad and all 8 kids, eight months to 17 years.
Both families say they hope to build a foundation of caring and giving their kids will follow forever.
If there's an organization or individual you believe deserves an act of kindness, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember, it cannot be a relative.