Santa Cruz Co. boy searches for loose change, helps families in need

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (KTVU) - A 9-year-old boy is proving a simple act of kindness can go a long way. He’s using his luck at finding loose change and giving back to those who need it most.

Landon Fernald has an uncanny way of finding loose change. The 4th grader started his collection one year ago after he accidentally slipped on a penny.

He then found money in random places including a $20 bill while playing at the pond. He kept it all in a jar labeled "Money Found.” He was unsure of what to do with it until a manager at a Quik Stop gave him an idea.

“He said he thinks I should donate some to people and he got that going through my mind,” said Fernald.

The next day he decided to give half the money to the Second Harvest Food Bank and the other half to Habitat for Humanity.

“I wanted to give it to people who don't have homes and food,” said Fernald. “I want them to have a good life.”

“It touched our hearts to think he really wants to make a difference in the world,” said Patrice Fernald who is Landon’s mother.

All in all, he collected $60. While that may seem like a drop in the bucket, the Second Harvest Food Bank said the money will help provide 124 meals to hungry families.

“Our reaction was just so grateful,” said Suzanne Willis of Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Cruz County. “We just think anything like that was a wonderful thing.”

In return, the nonprofit gave him a "golden ticket" to visit anytime and a piggy bank, thankful for his philanthropy and care.