Travis Durham and his brothers and cousin—Demontae, Thomas and Alan—are working together to help their Kentucky community by offering lawn-mowing services for free.
It Takes a Village, Together We Stand Strong via Facebook

It was meant to be a punishment.

Kentucky mom Barbara Wilson said that she tried to punish her son Travis Durham by making the teen mow lawns for free. She told Travis to mow a couple of their neighbors' yards.

However, according to WDRB, Travis ended up loving the job so much that by the time Wilson returned home, he had cut eight yards. In fact, Travis loved it so much that he got his two brothers and a cousin to join him, and the four of them decided to do a free lawn-mowing service for their community.

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"We doing it for the community, people who can't get out and do it. And I got my brothers involved ’cause I kind of showed them and told them the good effects," Travis told the news station.

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"He's the one that had the idea, the special kid that likes cutting grass for punishment," Wilson told the station.

The four boys, all around the ages of 14 and 15, go door-to-door to offer their services to people. However, they aren't always met warmly.

"Because they're young black males, people are a little afraid to open their door," Wilson said. "They just shut the door, [say] 'No thank you.' They don't even give them a chance to tell them, 'It's free; we want to stay out of trouble, we just want to take care of our community.’”

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But the boys still truck along, offering services in Newburg; south, east and west Louisville; Valley Station; and other Kentucky locations, with Wilson and her husband playing chauffeur.

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"I haven't had a car in about two months. We've been renting a car," Wilson said. "They have two lawn mowers right now, the rent-a-car; we'll load them up, drop them off to a community in the morning, pick them up at lunch, take them to a different community, pick them up when I get off work.

"My husband may drop by and pick them up and take them to a different location. So me and my husband and the kids have to be coordinated all day," she added.

The boys' hard work has done a number on their equipment. However, through social media, the community has been rallying around them. According to WDRB, one man from Greenville, Ind., showed the teens how to maintain their tools.

The boys are also accepting donations through a GoFundMe, which will be used for equipment, maintenance and fuel.

"We don't take money. No, these boys, if you try to pay them, they will not take cash," Wilson said.

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The money will also be used to fund a trip to Disney next summer as a reward for the hardworking boys.

"It was a big deal for them. It got them motivated," Wilson said. "I told them, regardless, if they make enough money or not, me and my husband, we'll find a way. They may not have the best of everything, but they have everything that they need. And for the things that they want, they have to do things like this to earn it."

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As of Monday morning, the boys had far surpassed a $6,000 goal set on GoFundMe, raking in $71,285.

Wilson, according to the GoFundMe page, is also encouraging all young men willing to participate.

"It makes me feel blessed. I'm proud, don't get me wrong. I'm blessed," Wilson said. "There are so many kids out here that are so materialistic, they would not do this work for free."

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Read more at WDRB.