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Seattle teacher trying to fund Seahawks jerseys for kids who can’t afford them

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Young members of the 12th Man (Getty Images)

A Seattle teacher loves that his school, Kimball Elementary, shows its spirit by letting the kids wear sports jerseys on Fridays to support their local teams. But he hates the fact that not all the kids can afford them.

Kevin Zelko teaches special education at the school, and he has a connection to the Seattle Seahawks as a beer vendor at CenturyLink Field during games. But he can't help but feel badly for the kids whose parents can't afford to buy them the jerseys of the team that everyone in the city is gaga about right now.

So Zelko has started a campaign to raise money to solve that problem. Born out of a conversation with his girlfriend, Zelko started the campaign on gofundme.com to try to raise enough money to buy jerseys for all the kids who want them at his school.

The original goal was to raise $1,000, according to Mashable, but as his story has been picked up by various media agencies, Zelko has raised more than $4,000. Zelko also plans to use a significant portion of his beer-sales money to help the effort. He says it's more than worth it to see the kids' excitement.

"Getting to participate with your peers in what everyone is excited about — and right now that's the Seahawks — is a huge deal," Zelko said. "In the entire city right now, it seems like every conversation anyone has is about the Seahawks. The kids experience that too and for them to smile in their jerseys of Fridays and cheer for the Seahawks on Sundays would be so great for them."

Zelko plans to take the money on Friday to buy the jerseys and clothe the kids in their 12th Man garb to get them ready for the big game Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers. He still hopes to raise more money before then, asking for donations of — naturally — $12. Or more, of course.

"Hey, even just a $12 donation in honor of the 12th Man would be great," Zelko said. "A jersey's not going to change the world, but it will bring the kids here a couple more smiles."

 

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Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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