TAMPA, Fla. — A Hillsborough County teen is raising money to make care packages for healthcare workers.
Akshaya Thoutam, 17, delivered 500 care packages to AdventHealth Tampa. She wanted healthcare workers to feel appreciated during the COVID-19 pandemic.
She gave healthcare workers a thank you note, chocolates, tea, gum and other snacks. She started the project in May.
"They were grateful and thankful, but it's really us who are thankful for them," said Thoutam.
Thoutam grew up in Tampa. She said she volunteered at hospitals in high school and middle school.
"I know our healthcare workers put in a lot of extra hours and even sometimes put their families at risk so I wanted to say thank you from our community for all the work that they've been doing," she said.
She plans to attend college in the fall and wants to work in the healthcare industry.
"I'll be majoring in Neuroscience at Georgia Tech. My goal is to go into the healthcare field. I don't know a specific career yet, but that's the field I want to go into," she said.
Thoutam hopes to make another 500 care packages if she receives more donations.
She has been raising money on a GoFundMe Page.