BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG) - #850Strong; we've all heard it since Hurricane Michael and one local business owner is using this hashtag to spread hope.
Lisa Hanna is the owner of L.H. Bead Gallery in Downtown Panama City. She has sold thousands of #850Strong charms and is donating the money to Bay District Schools.
"I just was very fortunate that we still had our building standing and I felt like there was something I needed to do. I had this thought about having these charms designed to encourage people and to raise money," Hanna said. "Staff members were going to school and teaching these wonderful children and they didn't even have homes and that really hit me hard."
Each charm costs $10 and 100% goes directly to individual schools. In no time Lisa's charms raised $6,000 for Cherry Street Elementary. That's when she decided to keep her campaign going.
"And it was such a hit, I was like, 'Let's do another school. This is awesome!' so I bought more charms and we did Cedar Grove Elementary," Hanna said.
"She posted on Facebook and people contributed funds and so we were able to receive a $6,000 donation from Lisa, and we were able to provide for our teachers, what they needed, and it was a blessing," Cedar Grove Elementary Principal, Sheila Wojnowski said.
The charms became so popular, Hanna decided to do another fundraiser for Bay High School and again $6,000 was raised.
"Then I thought, 'Okay, well it's still kicking and people are still coming in for the charms so let's just continue it,' I bought more charms and decided on Rutherford High School," Hanna said.
Hanna hopes to raise another $6,000 for Rutherford by the end of this school year.
"You know it's really a small token, I feel like it's not enough, and I wish I could give more," Hanna said.
She's spreading messages of hope and helping out the community as we continue to recover. If you'd like to buy a #850Strong charm you can either order online or visit Lisa's store on Harrison Avenue.