OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla -- Robyn Hays is a third grade teacher at Stanley Hupfeld Academy.
Here, 94% of the children come from homes below the poverty level. And too often, they come to class on an empty stomach. Look into their eyes and you can almost see the hunger.
Hays said, "I want our bodies and minds ready to take on the world because that's what we're doing."
As a teacher, Hayes doesn't make a large salary. But she uses her own money to buy them healthy snacks to alleviate the hungry pains and help them concentrate on learning.
That's why Liz Haralson nominated her friend for First Fidelity Bank's Pay It 4ward.
Haralson said, "These children suffer daily not knowing where the next meal is going to come. So, Robyn took it upon herself to make sure that so they wouldn't have hunger constantly."
Lauren Harris from First Fidelity Bank helped us surprise Hays with $400. Harris said, "She's doing great things for the community and these children on behalf of First Fidelity, I have $400 to pay it forward."
We delivered the surprise to Robyn this week. Liz Haralson told her, "Your devotion to the students, taking your own money to buy snacks, I was touched so I wanted to nominate you for Pay It 4Ward."
There is no question how Robyn will use the money. She's investing it right back into the children she has grown to love with all her heart.
Hays told us, "They need me but I need them a little bit more. I'm in teacher heaven here. I love it. One month and these children are my children I love them so much."
Pay It 4Ward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.