Mum charged with leaving kids alone so she could work is given $180k

Ash Cant
·3-min read

A woman who was arrested for allegedly leaving her children at a motel while she could go to work has received more than $A184,656 in donations to help her buy a home.

Police said single mum, Shaina Bell, 24, left two of her three children, aged 10 and two-years-old, at an Ohio motel where they were staying on February 11 as she went to work at a pizza restaurant.

The mum was arrested at her place of work after the father of her children called the police.

She has pleaded not guilty to two charges of endangering children. 

Ms Bell told local publication WKBN her daughter wanted to stay at the motel and that she believed the 10-year-old was mature enough to look after her younger sister. Her job is just down the street, she said.

After being released from jail the next day, Ms Bell said she was left without a home and in search of permanent housing. 

Single mother Shaina Bell
Police said single mum, Shaina Bell, 24, left her kids, aged 10 and two-years-old, at a motel as she went to work at a pizza restaurant. Source: GoFundMe

The story made national headlines in the US and Ms Bell's mum, Danielle Hosey, created a GoFundMe after people in the community asked how they could help.

"This campaign was created to help Shaina and her children raise the money they need in order to secure permanent and safe housing," the GoFundMe says.

"Everything raised will go directly to establishing a safe and permanent home for Shaina, Faith, Jai'Sean and Jade."

The initial goal of the GoFundMe was $A6,353, though it has since surpassed that, with more than $A184,650 in donations.

"We understand that everyone has a story and we are grateful that you are listening to ours," the GoFundMe says.

"From the bottom of our hearts we not only appreciate the financial contributions, but also the outpouring of support in the form of kind words and understanding."

While many people have rallied around Ms Bell, some have criticised her alleged behaviour.

She told WKBN some of the criticism was hurtful, but she wasn't angry about the ordeal, just embarrassed.

The motel where the kids stayed.
Ms Bell said her daughter wanted to stay at the motel and that she believed the 10-year-old was mature enough to look after her younger sister. Source: Google Maps

Among those who left kind words on the GoFundMe page were other single mums who resonated with Ms Bell's story.

"I was a single mother to three children and remember all too well how extremely hard it is. Stay strong!!" one person said.

"Poor working mom's don't get enough support or assistance enabling them to work. As soon as you have a job you make too much for any public assistance. It's so hard to dig out," another said.

"Your story hits home for me. Keep your head up mama!! Every single mom on the planet, and most importantly your kids, know you are a good hard working mom. I hope you get on your feet!"

Do you have a story tip? Email: newsroomau@yahoonews.com.

You can also follow us on Instagram and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the App Store or Google Play