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Young Boy Starts El Paso Challenge in Response to Mass Shooting

Ruben Martinez is trying to get people to do acts of kindness for others and hopefully restore some faith in humanity.

Facebook/Rose Gandarilla

In the wake of a tragic event, you may find yourself feeling at a loss on how to move forward but one 11-year-old boy from El Paso, Texas is doing his best to help his community begin to heal in response to the horrific mass shooting that occurred over the weekend. Ruben Martinez came up with the El Paso Challenge, where he is encouraging people to do 22 good deeds for other people to honor the 22 victims who were gunned down at Walmart.

“He was having some trouble dealing with what happened,” his mom, Rose Gandarilla, told CNN. “I explained to him that we could not live in fear and that people in our community are caring and loving. I told him to try and think of something he could do to make El Paso a little better.”

Since then, Ruben has been putting up posters, passing out flyers, and posting on FaceBook to try and help the El Paso Challenge spread. He even found time to complete his first good deed.

“Last night, he agree(d) to go out to do his first act of kindness,” Gandarilla said. “He chose to go deliver dinner to our first responders.”

Of course, none of this will bring back those people who were slaughtered by a white supremacist or solve the gun crisis in America but small acts of kindness like these can help people cope with the trauma that has unfortunately become an avoidable part of existing in modern society. Gandarilla says doing some good for the world has helped her son cope with what happened.

“He seems to be doing better and says that hopefully, the world will be a better place with all these random acts of kindness.”

Hopefully, the El Paso Challenge spreads to remind people that even on the darkest days, we can still bring light to the world if we choose to be kind to others.