On December 19, mother Tyshika Britten wrote a plea on Craigslist that would soon go viral. In it, she writes that the family is facing eviction and she worries that she will not be able to give her children a Christmas.
“I am a mother of six, 5 boys and 1 baby girl,” Britten wrote. “I’m so hurt. I’m trying my best. I pray everyday and now I’m begging for help. I know it’s not about the gifts, but they are kids! I’m such a failure right now . . . please help me.”
After the Washington Post wrote a story about the listing, both the original listing and the Post article went viral. This is how the family got Vedder’s attention.
“I was just so moved by the story and what this mother did for her children,” Vedder said to the Washington Post on Sunday. “I thought those kids must be so proud of their mother for reaching out. That takes a lot of courage.”
Vedder also told the Post that the family’s situation was reminiscent of his own upbringing. “There were years there were toys from Santa, but they were used and they came from garage sales and they didn’t always work.” He then said although he knows his check won’t solve all of the family’s problems, he hoped he could provide a sort of “tourniquet” to assist.
The family was not aware of who Vedder was when they received the check. “Is he in a band?” Britten says she asked when she saw the check. Britten used Google to search the name and found that he was the leader of Pearl Jam. She says that the family has since started to watch his concerts online.