Thirteen-year-old Gabe Flynn of Labrador City is dedicated to his cause: helping sick children and their families.
Over the past seven years, Gabe has raised over $4,000 for Ronald McDonald House through his annual fundraising initiative.
Last year, he made handcrafted ornaments from birch wood, sold them in his community and raised $800.
“Me and my dad (Trevor Flynn) cut down the wood and my neighbour (Dennis Jordan) gave some to us,” Gabe said about his latest project.
He used a Sharpie marker, he said, to create his artwork.
“I drew animals on them. I put trees on some of them, and the Labrador flag. I did sports - like karate, hockey and gymnastics,” he said.
Every year, Gabe comes up with a different way to raise money. He’s even accepted cash donations for Ronald McDonald House rather than birthday gifts.
“I made (and sold) a book, I knit scarves and hats, I washed dishes one year at a banquet, with the help of my best friend (Jackson Ayles Hancock) and his family.”
Officially opened on Sept. 27, 2012, Ronald McDonald House NL provides a home for families that must travel to St. John’s in order for their child to receive treatment at the Janeway Children’s Hospital and Rehabilitation Centre.
Gabe’s latest donation saw him receiving his seventh Young Hero Ribbon. The program recognizes the generosity of youth who raise money for Ronald McDonald House.
In addition to the annual project, Gabe also raises money for Ronald McDonald House by participating in community events.
His mother, Beverly Flynn, is proud of her son’s fundraising initiatives.
Gabe comes up with his own idea every year, she said.
While he likes to hold a different fundraiser annually, Gabe plans on making more ornaments this year as those he made in 2018 sold out.
Raising money for Ronald McDonald House makes him feel good, Gabe said.
“I know that when I donate the money, it goes to a good cause,” he said.