Every so often I reach a point where I begin feeling this despair that, as a nation, we just don’t get it when it comes to our nations homeless and our need to reach out and find a way of helping them. Sometimes it seems to me that no one really cares that there are literally millions of persons who are homeless – and that more than 1/3 of them are children.
At those times I nearly give up hope that anyone will ever care. But then, something happens that dispel those feelings of despair. For example…
When I was a young boy, I had a little red wagon which was actually more of a brown than red because of all of the rust.
Yesterday evening I came across a story of a non-profit organization called "The Little Red Wagon Foundation." It was started by a young Florida boy named Zach Bonner who is all of ten years old. His entire mission statement can be found right on the homepage of his website, and begins with the following line:
"My name is Zach and I am the founder of the Little Red Wagon Foundation, Inc. I started a non-profit so I could help kids in distressed situations."
The absolutely wonderful thing about this remarkable young man is that he is a doer and not just a talker.
His latest endeavor to help "kids in distressed situations" was a 280 mile walk across Florida from Tampa to Tallahassee to bring awareness to the plight of America’s homeless children.
Zach not only celebrated his 10th birthday during his trek, but he celebrated a Thanksgiving meal at a homeless shelter, and managed to still raise some $25,000 in donations and supplies for homeless children.
His message throughout the journey:
"…there are 1.3 million homeless and street kids in the country and 13 die everyday because of life on the streets."
More than once I’ve harped about how so many people have misconceptions when it comes to our nation’s homeless. According to Zach…
"A lot of people think they’re out there because they want to. And a lot of times it’s because they were kicked out, or they lost their house or something"
I makes me wonder how this young man can have so much insight while so many who are 3 and 4 times his age aren’t able to recognize the same truths.
Then again, perhaps it doesn’t really matter.
So long as there are people in this nation like Zach, who are willing to do what it takes to make positive things happen then there is still the hope that we, as a nation, will be able to live up to the potentials of the ideals on which this nation was founded.
And when it comes to Zach Bonner… all I can say is:
By the way, here a couple of links to news articles about Zach: