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An 11-year-old boy combats homelessness

October 16, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
A young man who has redefined the spirit of giving came to southern California Friday. Zach Bonner, 11, has gained national acclaim for his efforts to combat homelessness and help those in need. Today, he tries to inspire other young people to do the same. It's been almost two years since Zach Bonner began his 1200 mile journey he calls, "From my house to the white house".

The 11-year-old walked from Tampa to Tallahassee, then on to Atlanta, and finally to Washington D.C. this summer where he was met by scores of camera crews, lawmakers and community members.

His goal was to raise money and awareness for homeless kids.

"When you get to the end and you've seen that you've been able to accomplish it and you see how many people you've been able to help, it makes it all worth it," said Zach.

Today the young philanthropist came to Los Angeles to encourage students at Lupin Hill elementary to get away from TV and video games and try to make a difference by helping others.

"You don't have to do huge projects," explained Zach. "You an just do small projects and think, 'How can I make a person smile today?' and that's really how you can change the world.

During his trek to the white house, Zack spent 24 hours with a group of homeless children so he could learn the difficulties they face.

Zach's philanthropy began in 2004 at the age of six. He hauled his little red wagon through his Tampa neighborhood collecting water and emergency supplies for hurricane victims.

Within four months he had 27 truckloads, and soon after founded the Little Red Wagon Foundation, which helps underprivileged kids nationwide.

Next summer he has another walking trip planned from Tampa to Los Angeles.

Zach, who is now the subject of a motion picture on philanthropy, is proving to be an inspiration for people of all ages.

"I think it's pretty cool that there's a lot of people that are really interested in helping me bring more awareness to homeless youths so I'm very appreciative that people are there and willing to help," said Zach.

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