Look at the 7mm08 cartridge. My grandson shoots one with the Hornady Custom Lite Recoil ammo. The bullet is designed to be effective at the lower velocity. He is only 10 years old, and shot a doe with it on his first hunting trip. Very low recoil, but quite effective on deer. The rifle is a Savage Youth model, so I couldn't recommend that for your friend. Others here have a better idea as far as the rifle.