Joshua Smith sells a lemonade and popcorn to raise money for Detroit
Joshua Smith sells a lemonade and popcorn to raise money for Detroit

A 9-year-old boy in Detroit has decided to lend a helping hand in raising money for his cash-strapped city. Joshua Smith is selling popcorn and lemonade in front of his home in the hopes of raising at least $1,000 to donate to the city. Joshua heard a radio report on his way to piano lessons, about Detroit struggling to avoid bankruptcy, and decided he wanted to do something about it.

He would like to see the money used to help improve the condition of parks around the city and near his home. The Detroit Free Press interviewed the junior fundraiser, who talked about why he wants to help the city. He plans to send a letter to City Hall with a special message for Mayor David Bing:

“Dear Mr. Mayor, I’m sending this money because I hear the city is broke and I’m hoping to raise $1,000 or more so we can have lots of money, so we can cut grass and fix the water fountains in the park.”

Detroit has been battling bankruptcy for over a year and has been forced to cut city services, including parks and recreation, fire and rescue, and education. Those cuts have left parks near Joshua’s home untended, with grass growing nearly five feet high and broken fountains left unfixed.

Alongside his friend, Dwayne Durant, he is asking neighbors to help support his initiative. “The money will go to the Mayor and will help people to cut grass and pick up trash,” he says. His lemonade stand is open 5pm-8pm Monday thru Friday in front of Joshua’s Detroit home.

His mother, Rhonda Smith, is using social media to promote Joshua’s lemonade stand, and is considering starting a PayPal account so Joshua’s can receive donations from friends and family outside of Detroit.

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