NOVATO, Calif., (KRON) — A young boy is spreading messages of hope to uplift his community amid the coronavirus pandemic — one rock at a time.

6-year-old Tristan Fletcher-McBride is gifting his neighbors with special painted rocks and messages of hope as people continue to shelter-in-place.

The family tells KRON4 the idea came to Fletcher-McBride while walking the neighborhood with his mother and noticed other kids staying indoors.

“My son said mommy I just want everyone to smile because we can’t play together,” the boys mother Nicole Fletcher said.

Each rock was hand painted with a smiley face and came with a card reminding people to smile.

The idea was inspired by a similar project Fletcher-McBride had done at school. He quickly painted over 50 rocks as a way to make people smile despite current circumstances.

The shelter-in-place orders left Fletcher-McBride having to say goodbye to his fellow classmates as a result of the school year ending unexpectedly.

“He misses his teacher Ms. Palmer and he misses his friends … He feels a little isolated,” Fletcher said.

On Tuesday, Fletcher-McBride handed out the special painted rocks while practicing social distancing by placing them on each neighbors doorstep.

“I was inspired by my 6-year-old … we’re still connecting with our neighbors who we love and care for but we’re doing it in a safe way.”

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