ODESSA, Mo. — In a world of silly internet challenges, a 10-year-old boy in Odessa is taking on a task that’s doing some good one lawn at a time.
Aidan Carty was with his mom scrolling through her phone when they came across the 50 Yard Challenge. The fifth-grader immediately jumped at the chance to volunteer his time.
“I really like mowing,” Aidan said. “You get to spend time outside, and it’s cool to watch the grass change from really tall to really short.”
The group behind the challenge is Raising Men Lawn Care Service. The Alabama-based business champions boys and girls across the country to offer free lawn service to 50 people.
“He mows for disabled people, veterans, elderly, single moms, people who can’t or don’t have the time,” said his mom, Sabrina Carty.
If a child accepts the challenge, they must send the business a picture of them holding a sign saying, “I accept the 50 Yard Challenge.” In return, Raising Men will send the child a shirt, safety glasses and ear protection.
“This one gets them more involved, helping people instead of doing stupid stuff,” Sabrina said. “That’s the way I see it.”
As of July 2019, there were five kids in Missouri and nine children in Kansas participating in the challenge.
Aidan accepted the call to action in early August. He’s completed two yards so far. His most recent task involved removing tree debris and mowing overgrown grass at the home of a senior citizen in Independence.
“I just want to cut their yards, so they don’t have to do it,” Aidan said.
Sabrina said her son has always been a thoughtful person.
“I’m just very proud of him. Me and his dad both are very proud,” she said. “He keeps asking, ‘Mom is there anybody that needs my help?’”
Aidan has two yards lined up next week. He’s hoping his desire to help others will inspire his peers to do the same.
“[I want] to get kids that spend time indoors, playing on their Xbox or phones, to go outside and actually be interactive with nature, actually be outside,” he said.
The 50 Yard Challenge is year-round, so kids can rake leaves and shovel snow in addition to any other yard work.
Once the child completes the challenge, Raising Men Law Care gives them a brand-new lawn mower, weed eater and blower.
Aidan would like to have his lawn service one day.