Jeremiah Maniyogina is only nine, but he’s already learning the value of money and figuring out ways to make it.
During a snowstorm in Cambridge Bay earlier this winter, Jeremiah turned to his mom, Suzanne, and shared a lucrative idea.
“He said, ‘Mom, why don’t you post on Facebook that I could shovel for people,'” she recalled. “I said, ‘Oh wow, really?’ and he said, ‘Yeah.’ So I did that and he did some shovelling for the daycare that same day. I was really surprised he brought that forward to me.”
Jeremiah, the second oldest of four children, returned from the the daycare about an hour and a half later, having cleared the ramps, stairs and walkways of snow.
“He did that all by himself,” Suzanne said. “I was home that day so I could see him through the window and he was running home really fast. He’s all sweaty and panting, and he took his gloves off right away and he said, ‘Look Mom!’ and he showed me his money and he was so happy. He was really excited that he was able to make his own money.”
In one way, it made Jeremiah identical to his father. When his dad was a boy growing up in Yellowknife, Suzanne said Jeremiah’s dad and his dad’s sister would go out and clear snow.
“And they actually made the paper,” she exclaimed. “And they still have the (newspaper) clip of his sister and himself shovelling around Yellowknife.”
While it was the first time Jeremiah went out shovelling to make a buck, he regularly does chores around the house to earn an allowance. He also came up with another money-making plan years ago.
“He used to tell me to sell his toys when he was younger,” Suzanne said, laughing.
It’s not that Jeremiah is hankering to spend the money right away on a whole bunch of new toys either.
“He’ll save his money and then forget about it,” said Suzanne. “There’s nothing in particular (he collects, but) when those fidget spinners came out he was very eager to buy those.”
Jeremiah wasn’t available to speak to Nunavut News, but his mom’s pride was evident in her voice.
“It made my heart very happy that he asked me to do something like that, to post (online) saying that he wants to shovel,” Suzanne said.