Moline teen completes “50 Yard Challenge” to help out neighbors in need

Local News

A teenager in Moline is using a summer chore to make a difference for his neighbors.

Isaiah Bowen mowed 53 lawns this summer for the elderly, disabled, veterans and single moms.

It’s a part of the 50 Yards Challenge by the Raising Men Lawn Care Service, a challenge gets kids to help out their neighbors in need.

“Well a lot of them were ‘you’re a blessing’ and stuff like that, and that really did make me feel good,” Bowen said. “I didn’t really realize I was saving people a lot of money a week by cutting their lawn and they were always like ‘oh my God thank you’ and it was really nice.”

Isaiah’s dad James says he wanted to have a way to keep his son active while activities and sports are at a stand-still in Illinois, and to instill valuable lessons to him.

“Commitment, discipline, getting up in the morning and putting in the work,” James Bowen said. “And that was something that he learned towards the very end was just put your head down and do the work and that’s how you’re gonna get places.”

Isaiah’s hard work was rewarded. Rodney Smith Jr, who started the challenge in 2016, drove up from Huntsville, Alabama to present him with new yard work equipment.

“We want to show the kids it’s very important to learn how to give before you receive,” Smith Jr said. “And it’s important to help those in need.”

Isaiah says that with his new equipment, he’ll keep on mowing. “This summer and probably next summer I’m going to keep doing this,” Bowen said. “Some yards are going to be for money, and some are gonna be people we picked up next summer for the challenge.”

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