Like many Americans, Brian Schwartz of Wayne, New Jersey lost his job due to the pandemic. However, Schwartz is staying positive and using his free time to mow the lawns of senior citizens and veterans for free.
The 39-year-old worked in New York City as a digital advertising executive before the economy crashed, and he was laid off. Although his life was upended, Schwartz decided not to let the pandemic get the best of him.
With his late grandfather in mind, Schwartz realized that senior citizens and veterans in his community were at higher risk fighting against COVID-19, so he decided to help. Schwartz thought lawn mowing was a socially distanced service he could provide – at no charge – to people in his community over the age of 65. And so his free lawn business, I Want To Mow Your Lawn, was created.
“I just love grandparents.” said Schwartz. “And can only imagine the stress they’re all going through. I realized a lot of them (senior citizens) are on fixed incomes, so I figured there’s a creative way to help them out. Not just physically, but also mentally.”
Schwartz Follows His Heart, Helps New Jersey Community
The former advertising executive used his marketing skills to create a website and Facebook page for the business.
“With all going on in the world, it’s the least I could do for our elderly neighbors,” he writes on his website, IWantToMowYourLawn.com. “I love grandparents. I miss mine. Feels good to help out. … Also looking to help disabled veterans! I believe that putting some good out into the universe, it all comes back.”
Schwartz sent a press release to the local news to spread the word of his free lawn service. Afterwards, the business took off. He got his first customer in late June, and has since provided the service for more than a dozen seniors.
He makes sure to maintain a social distance by calling customers by phone when he arrives. Schwartz even sends air hugs to thankful customers.
Schwartz does not accept tips. However, many have donated to help with the cost of gas, or donated toward non-profit organizations that are listed on his website. He now offers his service in four New Jersey counties: Passaic County, Morris County, Bergen County & Essex County.
The New Jersey resident has even influenced two of his neighbors. The neighbors also lost their jobs during the pandemic and each decided to join the amateur landscaper on his mission.
Schwartz said he plans to continue expanding his free lawn mowing service as he figures out his next career move. He encourages others who are facing unemployment during these tough times to continue networking and to stay positive.