Using his own Christmas money as well as cash he earned helping out a neighbour last summer, 14-year-old Ponoka County resident Lucas Berg took it upon himself to fill 20 backpacks with essential items and donate them to people in need.
Berg, who is in Grade 9 at St. Augustine School, donated the backpacks to the Red Deer Mustard Seed on Jan. 19. It was important to him that the necessities reach people before the weather turns colder.
“As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and various other factors, a lot of people have lost their jobs and have been evicted from their homes and are forced to live in not-great places,” he said.
“I just want to help people.”
Berg wants to help the less fortunate and to “let them know they are not alone and that people are thinking about them.”
Following a list of recommended items, the backpacks were filled with hygiene items such as soap, deodorant and toothpaste, as well as warm socks, lotion, hand warmers, female hygiene products and new underwear. He also included a 10-pack of masks in each one.
“I hope the winter clothing can keep people warm in these harsh months and the rest (of the items) keep people clean and healthy,” said Berg.
Anita Berg, Lucas’s mother, is very proud of her humanitarian-minded son, adding that his next project is a fundraiser for local animal shelters.
When he isn’t busy with charitable projects, he is practising guitar, piano and his Japanese lessons.