CHICAGO (NBC News) – A Chicago teacher’s conversation on a plane about her underprivileged students prompted strangers sitting around her to give her cash.
Kimber Bermudez says she loves teaching. She says Carlos Fuentes Elementary School in Chicago has been a great proving ground for her growing career.
“The parents accepted me, the students accepted me and I just knew I was at the right place,” Bermudez told NBC Chicago.
On a recent Southwest flight, she expressed that love for teaching and her school when a fellow passenger asked her a question.
“He said, ‘What do you do?’ I said, ‘I am a teacher,’” said Bermudez. “ He said, ‘what is your greatest struggle?’ And I started talking about our school and the amazing educators here.”
Bermudez told the man on the flight about how she and other teachers would sometimes use their own money to help students whose families could not afford supplies.
After a while, she realized the man sitting behind her was listening.
“He was tapping me and he goes hey I’m sorry for listening and handed me cash and I was trying to understand what was happening…And he said I heard your story, do something amazing,” said Bermudez.
The man handed her $500. The generosity continued as more passengers handed her money.
“Before I know it all these people were just talking to me and telling me to use my voice,” said Bermudez.
Bermudez posted about the generosity to Facebook. She says the money will help change her students’ lives in the classroom.
“With more resources, I will get to do more and the kids will get to do more and I’m still learning and growing myself so I’m just baffled and blown away by all of this,” said Bermudez.