Eight years ago a determined first grader opened up “Zack’s Shack”, a lemonade and cookie stand, with the hopes of raising around $85 to donate one wheelchair. He’s far exceeded that initial goal, managing to raise over $75,000 to purchase more than 500 wheelchairs! As Zack prepares to enter high school, he is handing over the reins to his younger sister Helen. She will carry on the family business in the form of “Helen’s Hut”.
Over the years Zack’s Shack has gained National media attention from several outlets including People Magazine and The Huffington Post. He even received large donations from Steve Harvey and a grant from State Farm’s Neighborhood Assist program. Zack started his own website www.itfeelsgreattogive.com to receive donations from those who couldn’t make it to the stand. One of the biggest challenges has been that the cost of the wheelchair has more than doubled since the first year. As he prepares to begin high school in the fall, Zack is excited to participate in sports, new activities and look for another exciting charitable project to get involved with.
Looking back on the past 8 years, his parents Nancy and Danny are amazed at what their son has been able to accomplish. They can still remember counting up the money after the second year of the stand and explaining to Zack that he needed to deduct his future expenses to run the stand the following spring. This left Zack the cost of one wheelchair short of his goal, so he ran up to his room and emptied his piggy bank to purchase the last wheelchair. Today Zack will tell anyone “It takes money to make money”.
This past year Zack and his sister worked together, but next spring it will be all 7 year old Helen’s responsibilities and she is excited for the task. She plans to add a bell to ring for service and her favorite color pink to the stand.
We wish Helen the best of luck and look forward to seeing all of the success she will have in the future. If you are ever near Provo, Utah around spring break make sure to stop by and grab some cookies and lemonade!
Check out the video below to learn more about Zack’s story: