AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore”Parishioners at Fountain Baptist Church in a New York City suburb reached their goal this month: to raise $1 million for communities hit by Hurricane Katrina. It is one of the largest amounts ever raised by a single U.S. church.” (AP Wire) AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreOn the first day of April, which is “Autism Awareness Month”, an eleven year-old Salt Lake City area boy reacted to an emergency with mature awareness, despite his autism. He found help for his mom in the nick of time. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore Apple Inc. slashed the entry price for an iPhone in half ($99 for 8 gigabytes) and lowered some laptops by $300 Monday, the company’s first dramatic price cuts since the recession began a year and a half ago. According to Apple, the number of Mac computer users has tripled in the last two years, to 75 million. The company also unveiled its $299 32 gigabyte model, twice as fast with a longer battery life, with new features like built-in compass, video camera and satellite phone locator. Watch the video below, or read more in the Boston Herald… AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
The women at the Fuller Village retirement home in Milton, Massachusetts had been selling their knitted wares at the local holiday fair when Erica Max of the Mary M. B. Wakefield Charitable Trust noticed their stitching skills.LOOK: Romanian Shelter Gives Paraplegic Dogs Love, Care, and Wheelchairs She asked if the ladies would be interested in knitting “chicken jumpers” for the Malaysian birds struggling with the New England winter at the Wakefield Estate.The project has proved useful in keeping the chickens nice and warm, as well as giving the seniors a fun way to pass the time.It has also resulted in some pretty cute videos of fashionable foul strutting their stuff.(WATCH the video below) AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreThese handy older ladies definitely have more time on their hands now that they’re retired. That’s why they have hatched a plan to spend their time knitting sweaters for the chilly local chickens. Click To Share This Clucking Good Story With Your FriendsAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
Benavente is no stranger to humanitarian efforts – for 25 years, he’s worked for the Red Cross and witnessed the challenges faced by Syrian migrants. Micolon, who first met Benavente in 2006 when they were earning their pilots’ licenses, became interested in the cause after his friend described firsthand the refugee crisis.LOOK: 13 Truckers Use Their Vehicles to Prevent Suicide Attempt From Ending a LifeEvery year, thousands of refugees pile into boats as a means of reaching safety in Europe. Unfortunately, many of those vessels don’t make it to dry land.“It is very difficult to locate these small boats, sometimes carrying hundreds of people, and often the vessels ready to help them arrive too late,” says the pilots’ website. “We refuse to accept this fact as a fatality and we want to act to save more lives. Our mission is to provide air support, thanks to our aircraft adapted to search at sea.”WATCH: When Man Suddenly Collapses, People Line Up For 96-Minute CPR Marathon to Save HimAfter buying the plane in January, Benavente and Micolon launched their maiden flight over the Mediterranean to search for boats earlier this month. By partnering with several regional nonprofits and charities to coordinate rescue efforts, the dynamic duo is now able to spot lifeboats from the air and direct rescue ships towards their location.The industrious little plane is named “Hummingbird” after a Native American story about a hummingbird that attempts to stop a forest fire by scooping up drops of water with its beak and dropping it on the flames. When the other animals ask what the hummingbird is doing, it says: “I’m doing what I can.”If you would like to donate to the Pilotes Volontaires, you can visit their website.Fly This Inspiring Story To Your Friends And Share To Social Media – Photo by Pilotes VolontairesAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreTwo pilots have spent their combined life savings for the sole purpose of saving refugees from the perils of sailing across the Mediterranean Sea.José Benavente and Benoit Micolon are the French altruists behind the volunteer rescue group Pilotes Volontaires. The two men launched the effort after they pooled their hard-earned money to purchase a $150,000 plane to be used for rescuing migrants at sea.“José and I bought the plane with our own personal money because otherwise we would have wasted too much time searching for financing,” Micolon told NBC News.
The driver, Afolabi, somehow managed to steer the car onto a nearby street before he went off to find a mechanic. As soon as he left, at least 7 to 8 people (“area boys” in the native language) emerged from the deep dark of the night and surrounded our car, demanding me to hand over whatever money I had.MORE: When I Was Alone at the Hospital at 4AM, a Lyft Driver Restored My Faith in HumanityTo my relief, however, Afolabi returned to the car so he could intervene and scare them away. Though he was well-built, even in the darkness of the night, people will not generally fight to save their own possessions.The boys could have been carrying weapons with them, but this loyal driver did not think of any “ifs” or “buts”. His main objective was to save me from getting robbed. He was so concerned for my safety, he even rolled up the car windows so that the boys could not harm me.Initially, he tried to quietly reason with them to make them understand. When that didn’t work, he raised his voice and ultimately showed that he was ready for a fist fight.LOOK: Fearless Uber Driver Stops Mid-Trip to Scoop Up Injured Hawk and Save It From the HighwayHis bold gestures and muscular frame ultimately forced the boys to abandon their intentions and they finally ran away into the same darkness from where they came; but those few moments were enough to register the driver’s kindness into the deepest corner of my heart—and it was even more emotional to me since he was a native of Nigeria and I was a foreigner from India.So here he was, fighting with his countrymen just to save me, a “foreigner,” solely because of the one common bond that we all share: humanity!Hats off to Afolabi, the compassionate driver who helped me.Jitendra left his career as a sales manager to enjoy a calm life in Jaipur doing what he loves most—writing as a freelance creative and technical writer.Be Sure And Share The Inspiring Story Of Kindness With Your Friends On Social Media – File photo by Joy Agyepong, CCAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreThis blog was submitted to GNN by Jitendra Bhojwani. If you have any positive stories of your own that you would like to share with our audience, check out our submission page to learn more.Sometimes in life, a small event can make us realize that kindness still rules the world – and I had an opportunity to experience the kindness of people from a total stranger: a driver named Afolabi.In October 2007, I was working as a sales manager with a distributor in Lagos, Nigeria that provided me with a company driver to take me home at night. One night when he was returning me to my house, the car broke down on the highway.
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore13-year-old Kaitlyn Figueroa Lopez has never said a word in her entire life—until a Christmas lights display spurred her to speak.Since Kaitlyn was first diagnosed as autistic and nonverbal at 3 years old, doctors predicted that she would never speak.However, she and her mother Marisabel had been sitting outside their home in Mulberry, Florida so they could observe their neighbor’s holiday lights earlier this week when a “Christmas miracle” took place. Every year, Don Weaver puts on a stunning music display with more than 200,000 individual lights synchronized to Christmas music. This is not the first time that the mother-daughter duo has watched the elaborate light show, but this is the first time that it inspired Kaitlyn to speak.RELATED: After Teen With Autism Misses Train Ride, ‘Polar Express’ Crew Gives Him the ‘Gift of Human Kindness’As they were watching the lights, Kaitlyn suddenly stood up and started yelling “Santa! Santa is coming!”For Marisabel, it was the first time that she had ever heard her daughter speak—and now, she believes it will certainly not be the last.“To hear her speak, it just gives me hope,” she told the WFLA. “Today it’s 2 to 3 words, tomorrow it could be a sentence. A year from now it could be a whole conversation.”(WATCH the heartwarming news coverage below) – Photo by WFLABe Sure And Share The Sweet Holiday Story With Your Friends On Social Media…AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
Members of the South Bend Rwandan community gathered in McKenna Hall on Saturday afternoon to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the genocide against the Tutsi people as part of the worldwide commemoration called “kwibuka 20.”The kwibuka 20 commemoration movement focuses on the themes of remembrance, unification and renewal. Kwibuka translates from Kinyarwanda, the language of Rwanda, as “remember.”The keynote speaker for the event, Dr. James Waller, the Cohen Chair of the Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Keene State College in Keene, N.H., constructed his address around these three themes, both in Rwanda and in the world.Waller said he struggles to conceive of the pain felt by children who survived the genocide, the vast majority of whom witnessed the violence firsthand, and how they have been able to build a new generation on the foundation of peace.“One of the first times I went to Rwanda just a few years after the genocide, a good friend there … told me by his best estimate … 97 percent of the children who survived the genocide in 1994 saw murder,” he said. “They didn’t hear about, they didn’t read about it, they didn’t see it on television. Ninety-seven percent of children who survived the genocide saw someone killed in front of their eyes. The person they saw killed was most likely a family member, very probably a mother or father, very probably put to death by machete.”Waller said the world must remember the events of 1994 in Rwanda as a collective failure because the international community failed to intervene in the slaughter of nearly an entire people.“In the U.S. what we have to remember is that we watched while this happened,” Waller said. “It was a collective failure on the part of the international community as we all watched this unfold.“It wasn’t like the Holocaust where we couldn’t see it on television, and it took months to get estimates or data on number of lives lost, years to tell the story after it happened. We watched Rwanda unfold on our televisions, … and we did nothing. We stood by, and we watched it happen again. Our government in the U.S. even was afraid to refer to what happened in Rwanda as genocide because to call it genocide might mean that we have some obligation, as we did, to actually do something about it.”As a global community, Waller said the aim for unification should be to make the oft-quoted phrase “never again” a reality for atrocities such as genocide.“The world, when it thinks about unification, has to think about do we unite as a world to make sure that ‘never again’ actually has some meaning to it,” he said.Waller said the path to renewal, both for Rwanda and the world, must include reconciliation as well as reconstruction. He said this is something Rwandans have done in an admirable way.“Reconciliation has begun, but I think what’s important for us to understand is that reconciliation is a journey without end,” he said.“… I think what’s most striking today in this commemoration is how much loss is in this room, but how little you’ve talked about the other as the enemy, how much you understand that the other is a human being and the importance of facing that and recognizing that in terms of reconciliation.”Waller said the road to making “never again” a reality starts now and gains excellent insight and motivation from American tennis star and AIDS victim Arthur Ashe, who said, “Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.”“You start where you are,” Waller said. “You don’t have to have a certain degree. You don’t have to have certain experience. You don’t have to move somewhere else. You start where you are. You use what you have because each of you has some incredible gifts and points of leverage that can make a difference. And then finally, you do whatever you can.“When I think about remembrance, about unification and renewal, I can think of no better blace to start than to heed Arthur Ashe’s words. Start where we are, use what we have and do what we can.”Tags: Genocide, Reconciliation, Rwanda
John T. McGreevy, dean of the College of Arts and Letters and professor of history, presented the Cushwa Center Lecture as part of a yearlong celebration of the bicentennial of the birth of Fr. Edward Sorin, founder of the University.The lecture, titled “The Jesuits, Father Sorin, and the 19th-Century Catholic Revival,” focused on the Jesuit order, who McGreevy said are oddly contemporary in their focus on internationalism.McGreevy said one of the impressive aspects of the Jesuits is their development of a Catholic community more attuned to the reverberations of global Catholicism than seemed imaginable in 1816.Jesuits came from Europe to the United States for two reasons, McGreevy said. Jesuits followed the Catholic tide of emigrants who left Europe between 1820 and 1900, as more than half of the 60 million people were Catholics.Another reason McGreevy said Jesuits came to the United States was because they were kicked out of 22 European and Latin American countries between 1840 and 1900.When the Jesuits came to America, they carried the books, journals, devotional pamphlets, chalices, rosaries and holy water from a European Catholic world in crisis and translated them into an American idiom, McGreevy said.McGreevy used the example of Fr. John Bapst, a Jesuit priest in Maine, to describe the range of missionary work in the United States during the 19th century.“One way Bapst is part of the 19th century revival is [through his] devotional culture. A second way is education. A key component to the 19th century Catholic Revival is a focus on Catholic education and more broadly Catholic institutions,” McGreevy said.Bapst started his own Catholic school after he lost his case protesting the use of the King James Bible in public school, he said.“There are almost eerie similarities between Bapst’s story and that of Notre Dame’s founding president Reverend Edward Sorin,” McGreevy said. “Like Bapst, Sorin was marinated in Catholic devotional culture, [which was] just reaching full pitch.”McGreevy said Jesuit globalism has a history that peaked in the 19th century, declined and then re-emerged again in the Second Vatican Council.“Their orientation to the world, their linguistic curiosity, … now seems oddly contemporary,” McGreevy said.“While it is uncertain how this new era of Catholic globalization is going to work, the Catholic connections and communities now being forged by text messages and Skype necessarily follow the paths that were laid by Bapst and Sorin,” he said. Tags: Cushwa Center, Fr. Sorin, Jesuit
Students, faculty and staff from Saint Mary’s College, University of Notre Dame and Holy Cross College will break the silence surrounding sexual assault during the annual Take Back the Night event.“The goal of Take Back the Night is to re-establish that our campuses are safe places to be and that we don’t tolerate sexual assault on our campuses,” Abigail Spica, a junior student advisory committee member for the Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO) events and campaigns committee, said.“We break the silence to take back the night,” she said.The name of the movement is based on people associating night on a college campus as the space where sexual assault would occur, Spica said.Connie Adams, director of BAVO, said in an email that Take Back the Night is an international movement dating back to the 1970s, and is a unique way to generate awareness, stand in solidarity with victims and promote healing associated with sexual assault.Overt and subtle victim-blaming reinforce feelings of self-guilt and shift the blame from perpetrators to victims Adams said. She said this reinforces he silence surrounding sexual assault, which is a crime of silence.“Survivors deserve a space where they can share their stories, use their voice, and be heard,” she said. “Take Back the Night provides this opportunity for survivors.”During Take Back the Night, survivors will use their voices through the during a “speak out” event. Saint Mary’s students will meet at Lake Marion at 6:30 p.m. for a Kick Off Event, and join with Notre Dame and Holy Cross student en route to O’Shaughnessy Hall on Notre Dame’s campus for the speak out — an entirely confidential space where students are invited to share their stories of sexual assault, Spica said.Students will then take posters and march from O’Shaughnessy Hall to the Grotto to raise awareness about sexual assault. The march ends during a prayer vigil at the Grotto at 9:15 p.m.“The different components [of the event] are important for healing for sexual assault survivors and making a change within our community,” Spica said. “The march aspect promotes visual awareness about what is going on in our community, the speak out is an opportunity for community members to hear what is going on, and the vigil is a restorative action piece that show people we are a community and that we are here to support them.”Adams said she has been involved with planning Take Back the Night since 2010 and in that time the most noteworthy evolution is the growth of participation from students, faculty and staff, with this year unique because it is the first year Holy Cross College has been actively involved in the planning process.“Planning takes place over the course of months with leadership and dedication from students and staff at Saint Mary’s, Holy Cross and Notre Dame,” she said.“ … This collaboration echoes our mission of solidarity around violence, a primary purpose of the event.”Students from all three campuses are encouraged to attend, because the event is a strong way to show support towards survivors of sexual assault is to break the silence, Spica said.“Unfortunately, there is a lot of silence around sexual violence,” Spica said. “We don’t talk about it. Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross are supportive of people who have experienced violence, and this is a way to show survivors that we’re here to support them.”Adams said she encourages people to participate, because Take Back the Night is a way to hear those who are silenced and gain a greater awareness to the realities of sexual violence and its impact on survivors and communities.“By speaking out and addressing this prominent issue and need of our time, students become one with a long tradition of advocacy and compassion,” she said. “Hopefully Take Back the Night will offer more than a mere awareness, but strengthen that awareness to inspire action.” Tags: BAVO, sexual assault prevention, Take Back the Night