Changing lives through compassion and kindness
Growing up in Wasilla, Alaska, Sam Allred was a happy, healthy and active little boy. All of that changed when he was only two and a half years old, and the battle for his life began.
Sam was diagnosed with IgM Neuropathy, a very rare disease that causes the immune system to attack the kidneys. The aggressive illness caused Sam to spend years in the hospital, but his struggle with the disease never broke his spirit. In fact, Sam’s battle with IgM Neuropathy has made him a strong, resilient and remarkable young man.
When he was just nine years old, Sam became a YouTube sensation when his sister posted the “Cuppycake Sam” video. His new-found fame gave him the chance to educate the world on IgM Neuropathy and encourage other children facing an illness. Sam is also the author of a book, Opening Hearts, where he shares his story of battling a chronic illness and his hope to open the hearts of people around the world.
Now a teenager, Sam is dedicated to changing lives through compassion. He spends much of his time advocating for a cure for kidney disease and helping other children affected by illness through his nonprofit organization – Kindness for Kids.
As a part of Kindness for Kids, and with help from his large family, friends and various sewing groups, Sam started Project Comfort, which makes travel-size pillows with playful patterns for children. “I have been hospitalized many times over the years, and one time, I received a pillow from the Girl Scouts,” says Sam. “It made me feel really good, and I want other kids to feel the way I did. I want to uplift them and make them feel better because I know how it feels.”
With the help of FedEx, Project Comfort has been able to ship and deliver thousands of pillows to children in hospitals across the country.
Sam says his goal is to bring kindness to children in hospital beds all over the world, and there is no doubt that is exactly what he is doing – one pillow at a time.