Hunter-Michael Hutchins possesses an entrepreneurial spirit of rare proportions for a nine-year-old. From the roots of a scrap metal business, started in 2016, he recently set his sights on a new outlet for his earnings.
Hunter-Michael took notice of how the ongoing coronavirus crisis was impacting healthcare workers. With an awareness of the often thankless work the doctors, nurses, and others were putting in, the nine-year-old wanted to find a way to say “thank you.”
“I wanted to donate because people don’t thank the employees at any hospital enough,” said Hutchins. “I just wanted to thank them for everything they do.”
Instead of a party or gifts for his birthday this year, Hunter-Michael requested money and donations. With these funds, alongside earnings from his scrap metal business and contributions from others who were interested in his campaign, Hunter-Michael was recently able to donate more than $2,100 to Franciscan Health Indianapolis. The donation is designated for treats such as frozen yogurt and soft pretzels that the hospital staff can enjoy.
While Hunter-Michael has achieved success in his most recent campaign, the St. Francis SC player’s achievements do not stop there. The nine-year-old has developed an impressive self-sustaining business by way of recycling scrap metal for his friends and neighbors.
With humble beginnings at the age of just six, Hunter-Michael has quickly amassed skills and experiences while operating his business. Over the past three years, Hunter-Michael’s scrap business has recycled more than 15 tons of metal. With a little help from his parents, John-Michael and Kelly Hutchins, Hunter-Michael has continued to dig the roots of his business to deeper levels.
“Everything he does for his business, he pays for himself,” said John-Michael.
Recently, Hunter-Michael expanded his pursuits with the purchase of a pickup truck. While paying off the loan for the old Dodge Ram 1500, Hunter-Michael also covers the costs associated with maintaining and operating the vehicle, the purchasing of supplies, and other expenses.
Evident from his recent donation to Franciscan Health, many of Hunter-Michael’s ambitions for the business are grounded in philanthropy. From purchasing gifts for his parents to donating to school fundraisers, Hunter-Michael spends a large portion of his earnings on others.
“He’s certainly a giver,” added John-Michael. “On top of what he is doing now, in the future, he wants to donate five to ten percent of his earnings to a charity of choice.”
People call the Hutchins family when they have recyclable items. Not only will Hunter-Michael, with the help of his dad, go pick up the pieces, but he will also split the profits 50/50 with the donators who are often children or fundraising partners.
In addition to the scrap metal and unwanted machinery and tools lining their garage, Hunter-Michael has amassed quite the collection of aluminum pull-tabs. With almost two, five-gallon buckets worth currently, he regularly donates to the Ronald McDonald House Charities.
Hunter-Michael is already looking toward the future for his business and philanthropic endeavors. He hopes to continue his scrap metal business while possibly expanding his partnerships in the area. When we see a safe return to athletic competition, the south side of Indianapolis resident has his sights set on partnering with local schools or teams for fundraising opportunities.
“The comprehensive, wholistic development of Hunter-Michael as a person is impressive,” stated Dave Guthrie, Indiana Soccer’s Executive Director. “The entire Indiana Soccer family is humbled to be a small part in this young man’s remarkable development. I look forward to watching as he continues to live a servant-style life.”
When Hunter-Michael is not busy with his recycling business, he is playing soccer. The nine-year-old plays for St. Francis Soccer Club, an Indiana Soccer member club, while John-Michael also coaches for the Indianapolis based program.
“I’ve been around soccer since I could walk,” said Hunter-Michael. “Through the years, I’ve built friendships with other kids, so I just want to stay with them [St. Francis SC].”
Hunter-Michael’s business will continue to accept donations to show thanks to health care workers. If you would like to contribute, you can do so by contacting John-Michael Hutchins at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Author: Ethan Foster - Indiana Soccer - Social Media Producer.