During coronavirus, the founder of Raising Men Lawn Care has expanded his volunteer services to include hot meal and grocery delivery.

By Betsy Cribb
June 17, 2020
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Credit: Courtesy of Rodney Smith Jr.

Five years ago, Rodney Smith Jr. saw an older man struggling to mow his lawn and pulled over to help him. Smith has made lawn care his mission ever since. He has cut grass free of charge for elderly and disabled people, single moms, and veterans in all 50 states—eight times over. He was supposed to be on his ninth national tour when shelter-in-place mandates made his travels impossible.

“Mowing is essential for the people we help, so I was going to do it locally regardless,” says Smith. Donations have allowed him to also deliver groceries and hot meals to his at-risk neighbors. He’s encouraging the next generation to volunteer, too, recruiting kids from all over the world to mow yards in their own communities. “It starts by saying hello,” he says. “Just tell your neighbor, ‘This is what I’d like to do, and I’d like to do it for you.’ ”