Columbia, SC (WLTX) One man is defining the landscape of giving by traveling across the country to help take care of yards for the ones that can’t do it themselves.
Rodney Smith brings help in unexpected ways.
"There’s a lot of leaves out there. We're going to rake them all up and then we're going to bag them up and put them to the side,” said Smith.
Sandra Clark lives in Columbia and says sometimes working in the yard just isn’t possible.
"I just turned seventy three and I just can't do it anymore,” said Clark.
Although he’s working on finishing his masters degree in social work, Smith made the six hour drive from Alabama to the Midlands give Sandra Clark the gift of a clean yard.
"Mrs. Clark's daughter contacted me and said her mother needed help so I told her that help was on the way,” said Smith.
Tammy Smoak is Sandra Clark’s daughter and she was amazed Smith came all the way to help straighten up her mother’s yard for free.
"He just says, 'Well I saw a need," and I was like, 'We all see needs. We all just don't take the opportunity to do something about them,” said Smoak.
Smoak found Rodney on Facebook. He's is the founder of "Raising Men", a service group who's mission is to help veterans, the elderly, and single mother's by doing their yard work.
He's traveled to all fifty states to mow lawns, rake leaves, and do whatever he can to help inspire young people to serve their community. He does all of it for free.
He’s even started the “50 Yard Challenge” to inspire kids to take on fifty yards to help serve those in their community.
Smith started the project back in 2015 after seeing someone struggling to do yard work. He first challenged himself to forty lawns but that didn’t take him long so he decided to travel across the country and help out as many people as possible.
Smith knows with any job like this, team work makes the dream work.
Julene Lake from Cayce become part of the team by taking a day off of work to do her part.
"If he ever comes to South Carolina, that's where I'll be. I've never seen somebody like Rodney who does as much as he does,” said Lake.
After several hours of work and forty bags of leaves later, Mrs. Clark has received the gift of a clean front yard just in time for Christmas.
"When we can come and do their yard for free, they can use those funds for grocericies and medication and stuff they really need,” said Smith.
Now Clark can enjoy coming home to a clean front yard and is extremely grateful for what Smith does around the country.
"This is such a blessing that he does this for people,” said Clark.
Smith estimates that he’s cleaned up over two thousands since he started the mission back in 2015.
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