A 7-year-old Michigan boy is doing something to help sick children because he knows first-hand the anxiety that comes with being in the hospital.

Jacob Efthemiou had to be brave a few years ago when he was diagnosed with a medical condition known as Henoch-Schönlein purpura. HSP is the inflammation of the blood vessels in the skin, joints, intestines, and kidneys.

The Inspiration for Jacob's Bravery Box

Ethemiou tells CBS Detroit that he was scared before having a procedure done in 2020, but the allure of a toy helped ease his anxiety.

"I didn't want to get an IV, so then they said, 'After you do it, you might get a little prize,'" said Jacob. "And after, I got a Spider-Man toy, so I said, 'What if other people feel scared?' So that's when I made Jacob's Bravery Box."


A Little Help From Mom

Today, Jacob and his mother Danielle decided that it would be good to do something for other kids facing daunting medical procedures. They regularly put together gift bags to take to kids at Michigan hospitals.

"The first basket, I think when we saw it come together, we thought, 'Oh, that's really cute,'" she said. "And knowing that they were going to go to children's hospital, and hopefully the kids would feel the same way he felt the first time he got a gift bag, that it would maybe take him out of that element for a minute and let him celebrate something I think was really exciting."

Ethemiou goes on to say that her son's second-grade class was inspired by Jacob's project and recently helped stuff gift bags that will be given to more children.

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