An 11-year-old boy created #ElPasoChallenge, a challenge that has gone viral. Ruben Martinez, a sixth-grade student, created an online challenge to help her Texas community heal after the shooting at a Walmart store that left multiple dead and wounded. So far, 22 dead and 26 injured are reported after Patrick Crusius, 21, a young man who advocated racism and white supremacy, opened fire inside the store last Saturday.
The boy is challenging each person in El Paso to do 22 good deeds for other people, one for each of the victims who died in the shooting. Rubén wrote a list of ways to help others: “You can mow someone's lawn, visit a nursing home, pay someone for lunch or dinner, donate to families in need, write someone a letter telling them how wonderful it is, open the door for someone, bring flowers to someone in the hospital.”
His mother, Rose Gandarilla, said the purpose of this challenge is "to be kind to others." Ruben's mother revealed how this idea was born. The boy told him that he no longer wanted to go shopping after the tragic incident at the Walmart store. "He was having a hard time dealing with what had happened," he told CNN. “I explained to him that we couldn't live in fear and that the people in our community are kind and loving. I asked him to think of something he could do to make El Paso a little better.”
It was then that the boy went to his room and began to think about this challenge. “Last night he decided to go out and do his first kind act. He decided to go out and bring dinners to the rescuers.” The boy and his mother have gone to different locations - such as a Walgreens store and a Barnes & Nobles bookstore - to spread his powerful message of healing. "He seems to feel better and says he hopes the world is a better place because of these acts of kindness towards others," the mother concluded.