Pay It Forward: Keith Rawlins

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ST. LOUIS, MO. (KTVI) - It's been almost twenty years since a Kirkwood man came up with a simple idea: Give kids something to do after school and in the summer.  That idea blossomed into an organization called “Youth in Action”.

And as FOX2's Elliot Weiler shows us a proud member of the group is honoring its founder.

By paying it forward.

You might think it's rare these days to see so many kids smiling while doing good deeds for others.  But that's what “Youth in Action” is all about, thanks to its founder, Keith Rawlins.

"I think he believes that it`s a good thing to help other people and to help make the community a better place to live in."

Aparna Shekar has volunteered with the group for years, her sisters were also part of it, from collected cans for food banks to packing up presents for tornado-ravaged kids in Joplin.. They do it all thanks to Keith.

"He is a very generous person.  He`s kind-hearted, he donates all of his time and everything he has to helping other people."

That's why Aparna wants to honor Keith, a man who has given his life to helping others.

"Thanks for the nomination.  On behalf of FOX2 and AEM, we would like to PIF. If you hold out your hand I will count out 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 hundred dollars. Pay it forward.  Thank you."

We surprise Keith at his Kirkwood home.

"On behalf of FOX2 News and American Equity Mortgage, we would like to present you with, hold out your hand please, 1, 2,3 ,4 ,5 hundred dollars.  For what?  For being Keith."

Just for being Keith, a man who has helped nurture 450 kids into responsible, caring members of the community.

"I enjoy seeing how they`ve grown up and make a difference in the community."

They've been making a difference since 1994 and Keith sees no end in sight.

"I just enjoy helping people and making a difference."

Elliot Weiler, FOX2 News.

If you know someone like Keith Rawlings who is always doing good things, please let us know.

To nominate that person for our pay it forward award online at