For many young people, mowing lawns is a rite of passage. But when Rodney Smith Jr. sees a lawnmower and some overgrown grass, he sees a purpose.

“With a lawnmower, you can help out,” he said. “The lawnmower is my tool of choice to make a difference.”

The Alabama student is heading around the country to cut lawns in all 50 states for free. Smith has helped dozens of seniors, veterans, single moms, and people with disabilities through his self-propelled charity, Raising Men Lawn Care Service.

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“I’m from the island of Bermuda so we call it the Bermudian way of helping people,” he said.

It’s a steep goal, but Missouri marks his halfway point.

“It might be just a lawn but it means a lot to the people we help.”

And at each stop he challenges others to mow 50 yards for free, too.

“Not too many kids get out and do anything these days a lot of kids are just sitting inside playing video games, if we can get them outside and something as simple as cutting grass is helping people.”

The service will also help people with other yard work and, in the winter, snow removal.

If you’d like to be part of the project, visit the RMLS website.