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Community Rallies Around 8-Year Old Austin Girl

Created: 08/31/2014 11:04 PM KAALtv.com
By: Meghan Reistad

(ABC 6 News) -- An 8-year-old has achieved her goal, with the help of Facebook, a lemonade stand and a generous community.

“She was born in Albert Lea and we found out that she had Spina Bifida, that means that part of her spinal cord is on the outside of her body,” said Julia’s Mom, Kim Zerke.

In school, Julia uses an adaptive bike. A bike she wants to have at home as well, but the bike is expensive and not covered by insurance. 

“We were trying to think of other ways we could come up with the money. I just didn’t want to say, ‘No you can’t have it.’ And that’s it.”

So, Julia set a goal to raise $2,000.

 “Julia said, ‘Hey we should have a lemonade stand,’” said Kim Zerke.

“I had the best lemonade stand ever,” said Julia Zerke.

Julia’s mom posted pictures on Facebook and the donations started pouring in.

“I just can’t believe it, we had friends that came over and gave us money and got lemonade from Julia… complete strangers too,” said Kim Zerke.

The road has not been easy.

“When she was born, it was a scary time. We didn’t know what would happen,” said Kim Zerke.

But, with new pedals, the road may be a bit easier.

“Because I’m going to get a bike,” said Julia Zerke.

“We just want Julia to be able to do what any other kid can do. If that means she wants to ride a bike, we’re going to find a way for her to do that,” said Kim Zerke.

In two weeks, Julia raised the $2,000 needed to buy the bike. Now, she’s just waiting for it to be delivered.

An 8-year-old has achieved her goal, with the help of Facebook, a lemonade stand and a generous community.