All eight members of the Smith family grew up in Trenton, New Jersey, where they lived amid poverty and drugs. But their parents always emphasized the importance of education, and now they are putting that education to good use. One third of the children in Trenton currently live below the poverty line, and the city has searched hard for ways to reverse this trend. The Smith family is helping. They just won the largest jackpot in New Jersey history -- $429 million. After taxes, that's about $25 million for each family member.
Instead of taking an exotic vacation or buying a mansion, the family has started foundation to provide grants to organizations that improve the lives of children and families through education and neighborhood development. According to Harold Smith, "We want to fund programs that directly affect systems of poverty so we can help change the dynamics that are keeping people in poverty." The odds of winning the jackpot were 292 million to one, so we may never win that much money, but we can still learn from the Smiths -- do whatever you can to make your community better.