ROBBY'S and EMMA'S MISSION
When Robby Eimers, age 17, was 8 years old , he drove down to Detroit with his grandmother and one of her friends to drop off a couple of coats and blankets to a homeless shelter. When Robby saw how many homeless people there were, it shocked him and made him sad so he decided he must do something. He went home and started doing chores and putting the money he raised away along with some of his Birthday and Christmas money. When he had enough saved, he would go buy hats, gloves, socks and other items and take them to the shelter about once a month. One day Robby decided he wasn't doing enough so it ended up as a weekly trip. He has been Sharing every week for over 8 years now. Robby calls what he does "Sharing" and the homeless his "Friends". If you met Robby, you would see that he is a humble, caring and loving person who doesn't talk much, but sure does help a lot of people. His sister, Emma, age 14, has been by his side since she was 5 yrs old Robby inspired Emma to follow her passions and one day she came up with a great idea....to help their Friend's animals who had no food. Furry Friends was founded.
Robby and Emma worked hard towards their many goals and reached a big one. The Eimers Foundation soon obtained its 501.(c)(3) Status. They hoped to be able to apply for grants and get Corporate donations. Besides helping the homeless, they also help local families in their hometown and across the country when they don't have enough to eat or need money to pay their utility or doctor bills, mortgages or rent, and any other needs they may have.
Robby and Emma Share every week all year round, in all kinds of weather. Some weeks they work on other projects but they are always Sharing in one way or another. Robby started The Eimers Foundation to get the word out about what they do and also started a Facebook page where they share pictures and stories of their weekly trips. The page is not to boast about what they are doing, but to show others how it is done and teach them how many people are homeless. Their goal is to get other kids (and adults) doing the same in their own hometowns, around the world, so, one day there will be no more hungry or homeless.
Another goal is to get a Food Truck so they can serve food more efficiently and go to more places to reach Friends that can not get to where they usually serve. Andiamo Italia Restaurant, who has a Food Truck of their own, heard about Robby's dream to get a Food Truck and decided they wanted to mentor him in learning how one works and how to make the food. A couple of times they sponsored Sharing's. They had Robby work with the head chef at one of their restaurants to prep and cook the food then they loaded up the truck and headed down to Sharing. He really, really enjoyed this. Robby also wants to get a building where he can serve his Friends inside instead of out in inclement weather. Emma's goal is to get a building where she can serve her Friends and also allow them to bring their animals with them inside. A lot of her Friends live in the street, when they could go to a shelter, because they are not allowed to take their animals with them.
Robby and Emma are role models for other children as well as adults. They have Big Plans. The first being starting a National Campaign to involve more kids in pursuing their passions. They speak at schools and churches and teaches other children to follow their own passions and do something about it. They tell them that it doesn't have to be helping the homeless, it can be whatever they want to do to make the future better for their communities. Robby was featured on the cover of Time for Kids Magazine and he receives letters from all over the country from classrooms telling how he inspired them to do the same where they live. Emma, age 14, loves animals so one day they voted unanimously 2-0 to create "Furry Friends" a division of The Eimers Foundation. Emma collects food and other items and donates money for homeless animals and shelters. She also donates money and other goods to the Detroit Mounted Police horses. Robby and Emma never asked others for donations, but people from around the country, then the world, started to donate. They said they were inspired by Robby and Emma to do something too.
The Eimers Foundation has received over $95,000 in the past 5 years in donations and have spent almost every penny on food, hygiene products, surgeries for human Friends and also Furry Friends, paid off behind rent and mortgages, and many other things. Those who live near Robby and Emma go Sharing with him or collect donations and ask them to Share their items for them. The number of Friends they Share with has grown from an average of 40 Friends a week to now serving between 150-200 Friends a week. Besides making a full dinner each week, they take fully packed lunches that their Friends can take for later. They also Share hygiene products, hats, gloves, scarves, coats, blankets, shoes, boots, and many other items. More and more volunteers show up each week to help Share. It has become a community event. Robby and Emma are very grateful for everyone who has helped them over the years.
Robby and Emma also have Holiday themed parties, complete with decorations, for their Friends too. At Christmas Robby dresses up as Santa and Emma, Rudolph, and they throw a great big Christmas Party in the fields. They bring a tree and ornaments for their Friends to decorate and wrapped gifts. They feel everyone deserves to open at least one present at Christmastime. For Halloween, they have a Halloween party complete with costumes and trick or treating. They also throw birthday parties for their Friends who would have nothing if they did not. Their Friends love their parties so for Robby's 12th Birthday they had a Surprise Birthday Party for him. They signed a big Happy Birthday sign. They also took up a collection of loose change, put it in a plastic shopping bag, and presented it to him as his birthday gift. They said they knew it wasn't much, but they wanted to give him something for all he has done for them over the years.
Robby and Emma also volunteer with other organizations that support low income families, single mothers, homeless pregnant teens, and homeless veterans who are in transitional housing. The Eimers Foundation is growing and continues to get National Attention yet they both are very humble and do not like the personal attention, but are grateful that their mission to end homelessness is being shared around the world and realizes that it is the best way to bring awareness. Robby, Emma, and their family were flown to Universal Studios in Orlando for an all expense paid trip given to him from the Steve Harvey Show where Robby was honored as one of Harvey's Hero's. He was very grateful and had the best time, but he did mention to his family that he felt guilty. That is just Robby.
In September, 2014 the State of Michigan's Housing Commission invited Robby to be the opening speaker at their End Homelessness Summit held in Traverse City. Throughout the year he as spoken at churches, schools, corporations, and conventions. He won the Michigan Governor's Award for Youth Volunteer of the Year In 2015 and 2017. He traveled to Grand Rapids then Detroit met with Governor Snyder. In 2019 Emma was awarded the same honor as Youth Volunteer of the Year. They both have received many awards and grants too. Robby receives messages from all over the world telling him that they have started a chapter of the Eimers Foundation in their hometowns; some as far away as Africa, Australia and Scotland.
Another plan they have is to help showcase their Friends talents so they might be able to earn their own money to help them get out of their current situation. They have a Friend, Walter the Woodcarver, who carves wood. One year in December Walter told Robby he had to be out of the Shelter by Jan. 1. Walter didn't know what he was going to do because he had no money and he didn't want to go back on the streets. Mr Bill, a great man and loyal volunteer with the Eimers Foundation talked to Walter about selling his carvings to make some money. Robby posted pictures of the carvings on their Face Book page and immediately people started to buy them. Walter moved into his apartment in the following September with the savings he had earned. He has been in the same apartment for 5 years! The Foundation also serves and visits the Michigan Veterans' Foundation in Detroit. Many of the Vets there have trouble walking so Mr. Bill and Robby suggested maybe Walter could carve canes for the Vets. People can donate $50 for a cane and then they can go to the Veterans Foundation when the Eimers Foundation serves dinner there and give their cane to a Veteran themselves. They named it Support a Vet. It is a great program for everyone.
Robby and Emma are currently preparing to apply for grants. They have a dream of getting their own building so their Friends and Volunteers don't have to stand outside in all kinds of weather to be served their dinners. They would like a bathroom, a shower, and a washer and a dryer to start with. Emma plans on allowing them to bring their dogs to stay too.
When Robby gets older, he plans to play baseball for the Detroit Tigers and then when he turns 35, become the President of the United States, when he will end homelessness once and for all. Emma plans to be a veterinarian and open a shelter where Friends can bring their Furry Friends to stay with them.