EDMOND, Okla. - By day, Kristy Payne is a realtor, but when she's not selling homes, she is giving away something with a much richer commission through a program for children she appropriately calls “Fostering Sweet Dreams.”
It may seem like something so simple, but for many children in foster care, a place to lay their heads at night can mean the difference between living in a shelter or going home.
Jennifer Abney works closely with the Department of Human Services and with foster families, and as luck would have it, she came across Kristy Payne on Facebook.
"It's incredible,” Abney said. “She is one of those people who is helping children find a home faster, and she's one of the solutions to foster care. She's helping kids find a home and not stay in the shelter."
One of the most needed necessities of all things is beds. Children cannot be placed in a home without one.
“She ended up filling the need for foster families that we had who took extra children to keep sibling groups together,” Abney said.
So, Abney nominated Payne for Pay It 4Ward.
"Jennifer you have such a great team here and all the amazing things you do for the community of Edmond, but all the wonderful things you do to partner with Kristy and her team,” First Fidelity Bank Executive Vice President James Boggs said. “So on behalf of everybody at News 4 and First Fidelity Bank, I'm so honored to help you pay it forward."
Payne leases a quaint little house in Edmond to operate “Fostering Sweet Dreams.” It is full of beds, bedding and dreams.
Many of the items are donated, and some Payne purchased with money from her own pocket. She has been known to even personally decorate childrens' rooms herself.
"These kids are just elated when they get their own bedding, and it's just so exciting for all of us,” Payne said. "It's a win-win, because it just makes my heart feel so good and this is what I like to do."
Pay it 4Ward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.