Lombard girl's charity to help homeless scores 'TODAY' show appearance
A Lombard girl and her mask fundraiser to help the homeless are set to be in the national spotlight Wednesday morning on the "TODAY" show on NBC-TV.
Olivia Dru Tyler, 7, is scheduled to appear via Zoom from her home about 7:30 a.m. to talk with co-anchors Hoda Kotb and Savannah Guthrie and news anchor Craig Melvin about efforts through her charity OliviaDruCares.
The nonprofit Olivia started with the help of her parents, Andrew and Linda Tyler, is selling masks online at https://www.oliviadrucares.com/ for $5 each and donating one mask for each one sold to a homeless person, essential worker or someone else in need.
Funds raised from mask sales, roughly $3,500 so far, will go toward Olivia's future goal of establishing some sort of hotel for homeless people where they can come and go. In her vision, Olivia said, the hotel is a welcoming place with a playground for kids to have fun while their parents are busy.
Olivia caught the eye of the "TODAY" show's producers -- and soon its 11 million nationwide viewers -- after appearing last week in the Daily Herald.
Her father said her "TODAY" show appearance will be one of the features in a "Celebrating America" segment that's set to air July 1-4.
Since her story ran Wednesday in the Herald, Olivia also has heard from a state representative, a state senator, a nationwide hotel chain representative, a former NFL player and a DuPage County judge who oversees eviction proceedings. She's also seen an influx of roughly $500 in new donations and orders for her bandanna masks, which are colorful polyester sleeves decorated with Christian sayings.
"Donations have been coming in," her father said, "and God is good."