Zach Hartman, 8, launched a service project in 2017 to do 52 acts of kindness for 52 different organizations to learn more about how kids can help their community and their planet.
Zach was able to collect and donate 274 bags of various items to non-profits, including over 6500 books, and raised over $1500. What shocked him was the amount of help he was able to give to the environment.
“As a 7 year old, I was asked to start taking out the trash. I realized we only got one trash day for recycling items and actually two pickups a week for regular trash. I wondered where all of our trash would go,” said Zach.
Zach realized many of his Kindness Projects could be dedicated to helping the environment. He collected old linens for animal shelters and equestrian centers, used clothing went to non-profit resale stores and distribution centers, and books went to schools and libraries. To date, Zach has done over 100 hours of community service and has kept over 2100 pounds of used items out of landfills and saved over 600 trees by promoting reuse of books.
Zach recruited members of his Cub Scout Pack, Martial Arts Studio and Humane Society Kids Club to help collect items and distribute them. He has set up a website, YouTube Channel and blog as a way pf sharing his ideas with other kids. He says he hopes others will try doing Random Acts of Kindness especially when it comes to saving the environment. His most impactful delivery was to Title 1 school, Lee Elementary, who suffered from a tragic fire. He helped collect, sort and deliver over 1000 books for classrooms in their new location.
Zach has also partnered with Glad Dogs Nation, who collects gently used stuffed animals, converts them to animal toys and donates them to shelters. For Make a Difference Day, Zach encouraged his Kids Club to make 50 toys for the shelter pets in Pinellas County.
More information is available at ZachPlanet.com. Follow the projects at @Zach52Project on Facebook.