An 11-year-old boy from Little Rock, Arkansas decided to accept a lawn mowing challenge, and for his remarkable efforts has been rewarded with fabulous prizes. It wasn’t any lawn mowing challenge, it was the Fifty Yard Challenge, where he had to mow 50 lawns for people who either couldn’t themselves, or couldn’t afford it. Plus, he had to do it all for free.
Jayden Nelson started the challenge in August 2022 with the help of his grandmother. Nelson’s grandmother taught him to mow, signed him up, and was his biggest cheerleader. The young man initially had hoped to complete the challenge in a year, but with constant encouragement and a work ethic that is far too rare for people his age, he powered through and finished well ahead of schedule.
Now he has been handsomely rewarded with new equipment. Nelson said: “No words can explain how happy I was. I was grateful because I finished the 50 yards because I thought it would take me more than a year to complete and I was happy because I got all this new stuff.”
🚨CHALLENGE COMPLETE!! #Today, we caught back up with 11-year-old Jayden Nelson who after nearly a year has completed the ‘50 Yard Challenge!’ With a brand new lawn mower in hand, Nelson tells me he is not done helping those in need. @KARK4News @FOX16News @iamrodneysmith https://t.co/yQokvxQxRZ pic.twitter.com/rqd4Q8Awua
— Tylisa Hampton (@TylisaHamptontv) June 12, 2023
They say hard work is its own reward, but it helps when you get all new equipment for your efforts. Nelson also learned valuable life lessons and had a shared experience with a strong role model, his grandmother. He continued: “I am proud that I got this far and still because of my grandma I wouldn’t be here right now.”
The Fifty Yard Challenge is the brainchild of Rodney Smith Jr. He started the non-profit organization in Alabama with the goal of teaching the value of hard work and service to young people through mowing yards for those in need.
The non-profit, called Raising Men & Women Lawn Care Service, outlines their mission statement on their website: Raising Men & Women Lawn Care Service is the union of an ordinary yard maintenance service and the commitment to establish an inspiring program to keep our youth (girls & boys) on a positive path while learning and understanding their value in society. RMLCS/RWLCS provides free lawn care to our elders, those who are disabled, single mothers and our veterans, who do not have the time, resources and/or money to take care of their yards.
The organization has young mowers from all over the world mowing lawns, helping people, and teaching kids the value of hard work and perseverance. The founder, Rodney Smith Jr. said: “The message is you work hard and like anything in life, things will be challenging and things will get difficult but just stick to it if you commit to it.
Jayden Nelson won a new lawn mower, weed eater and leaf blower for his efforts, and he plans to start his own lawn care service. More importantly, there is now another young person and future leader that has learned the value of service and hard work at a young age.
We need more of what Jayden Nelson and Rodney Smith Jr have to offer. More adults teaching kids old-fashioned values, and more kids willing to sacrifice in the service of others. That’s how we restore traditional values to America.
Featured image screengrab from embedded YouTube video
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