Jackson Davis had a lot of choices for a community project.
“I’m just looking forward to actually getting the bus out and working,” Davis said.
It was the final step for the honor student to become an Eagle Scout.
He could have done something relatively small. But instead, he wanted to help Messengers of Hope get food out to those who need it.
“The way most food pantries work is that people have to be able to get themselves to the food pantry and then get the food home. With this bus, we can take it to areas where people might not necessarily have cars. And we can bring the food right to them. Help them have easier access to it and make sure no one has to go hungry in our community,” said Davis.
To make it happen, Davis led the way in converting a school bus into a mobile pantry.
It has food racks, freezers and everything needed to deliver the food.
Davis' dad helped, but most of the work was done by other scouts from Troop 77, members of the Mitchell High School swim team and the robotics club from Wendell Krinn Technical High School.
“From demoing the bus. Taking all the seats out. To the painting. To building all the framing. Cutting out the openings for the doors.” said Davis' father, Dave.
Davis said building the bus wasn’t easy, but he learned a lot. Especially how tough it is to raise money.
“We’ve already spent close to $14,000 and there’s still more stuff we’d like to buy and just a lot of that is talking to people. Getting sponsors. We raised $5,000 through GoFundMe,” David said.
When asked, “What’s your message for teenagers who are sitting around playing video games, snap chatting and all that?”
Davis said, “Nothing is better than helping your community. I mean there’s people in need. I have the time to contribute to it. And I just love being able to help people.”
The bus will be loaded up for the first time on Sunday, and then it’s time to hit the road.
For more information, go to @JacksonDavisEagle on Facebook.