A Florida teen is taking it upon himself to support those in need. By hand carving and selling intricate US flags, the youngster is raising money to support homeless veterans, children with special needs, and medical professionals.
Lorenzi Liberti, a 15-year-old from Lakewood Ranch, makes the impressive works of art in his garage. He works day and night to make US flags from 13 planks of pinewood.
Liberti started creating the “Heroic Flags” 8 months ago. Since then, the teen already completed 50 flags and raised thousands of dollars. According to WFTS-TV, the donations go to special needs children, homeless veterans, and the Turning Points nonprofit in Bradenton, FL.
On his website, Liberti recalls the moment that inspired him to make the flags. He writes about meeting a struggling veteran while working at a soup kitchen with his church group.
“The encounter made an impression on me,” he writes. “‘How could America abandon the [servicemen and servicewomen] who fought for our freedom?’, I thought to myself. I wanted to do something about it but wasn’t sure how a [14-year-old] boy could make an impact.”
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Liberti chose to broaden his mission to honor medical professionals and front line workers. He created a GoFundMe page in order to try and place one of his flags in a hospital in every state. Currently, one of Liberti’s carvings hangs at the Sarasota Memorial Hospital where his mother works, Fox News reports.
Liberti set the goal for the GoFundMe at $50,000. Currently, the artist earned more than $8,600.
He calls the donation efforts “bigger” than him. Liberti says, “As long as you’re living, you’re here for a purpose.”
Due to the overwhelming demand, Liberti’s carvings are currently out of stock. However, he hopes to fill as many orders as possible in the future.