Tina's blog

World Give Day - May 4, 2012

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Last year I became a fan of GiveForward and their personal fundraising website that helps people pay for medical emergencies. Yesterday, I received a Facebook notice to participate in World Give Day created by GiveForward. This is another grassroots effort to help mobilize philanthropy and confirm the understanding that each of us can make an impact. The organizers are looking for bloggers, Twitter and Facebook users, or anyone interested in using their communication platform to spread the word and help encourage participation in the third annual World Give Day.

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Fourth Anniversary Giveaway Winners

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Congratulations to our four winners!

#9 - Alice Gore Fraley
#26 - Amanda Correa
#86 - Ngoc Tran
#98 - Melody Duval

I'll be contacting each of you today to get ring sizes and shipping addresses.

RAK Club

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Seeing kindness practiced in a school setting offers a diversion from the wake of violence and bullying issues we've heard so much about in the past decade. The kids at Towne Meadows Elementary School in Gilbert, Arizona, are learning early about the potential they have to make a difference in the lives of others by getting involved in the school's Random Acts of Kindness Club.

The kids along with the club sponsor, Jeanie Owens, created Project Sleep Tight. After collecting donated items, the students stuffed more than 100 tote bags with items needed to ensure a good night's sleep for the homeless children in their city. Books, blanket, a teddy bear and a toothbrush gathered in a tote bag are not just basic necessities, but can help ease the trauma of falling asleep with no place to call home.

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Storytellers For Good

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Storytellers for Good is a platform for telling and promoting stories about people who are making a positive difference. Founder, Cara Jones, frustrated by the tragedy and negative nature of local news, decided to use her video making and writing experience to tell human-interest stories that inspire. I stumbled across this video about Peach's Neat Feet on Cara's site, one of many Storytellers for Good pieces. The simplicity of this particular story added with the young age of the founder is a poignant reminder that we can all do something, anything, to help someone in need.

Moving Towards A Kinder World in 2012

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Just about everyone living under this sun has an interest in the 2012 Mayan calendar. Last week I was reading another analysis of the ancient prediction I found comforting and sincerely accurate. Inquire Within posted an article sans the hype, fear, violence and destruction angle that left me feeling hopeful.

Jim Papp, the author, explains that the Mayan people state the fact — their calendar does not end on December 21, 2012. This is a transitional period from what they call the Fourth Sun into the next cycle, the Fifth Sun. Not the Hollywood doomsday plot of the earth's demise.

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Kindness Scholarship

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With a kid getting ready to go into high school next year, exploring financial aid options for college is not far from my mind. In order to help with the rising cost of a higher education, students are often awarded for academic achievement, athletic superiority, involvement in student government and extracurricular activities. But I had never heard of a scholarship based solely on kindness until I read about the Natasha Domeshek Kindness Scholarship. Though we are not from this community and my son is too young to qualify for the $50,000 award granted to a 2012 graduate of the Medfield High School in Massachusetts, the guidelines still intrigued me!

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Craft a Random Act of Kindness Today

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One of my favorite stores, Michaels, is celebrating Random Acts of Kindness Day today by giving away more than $100,000 in gift cards in its stores and on Facebook. This is the craft store's way of saying thank you to its customers and encouraging them to get into the pay it forward spirit with DIY gifts. Gift suggestions and step by step project instructions are given on their Share the Love page. And don't worry if you're not the artsy-craftsy type. Michael's makes it easy!

Post a comment on Facebook or visit one of their stores to enter.

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All This Talk of Love - Johnny Barnes

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On this special day we celebrate LOVE, I wanted to share with you the story of Johnny Barnes, Bermuda's friendliest man. Johnny has made it his mission to tell everyone that passes by the Foot of the Lane roundabout in Hamilton, Bermuda, "I Love You." Why? Nobody can really answer that question. But there is no doubt he is an island living legend. The islanders spent $70,000 on a life-size bronze statue of him blowing his kisses in the air just to honor their beloved brother. You can catch him just about every day from 4 am to 10 am spreading love from his happy place smack dab in the middle of the morning traffic commute. He's the guy greeting the world with a wide smile, often giggling, and blowing kisses.

Matt Morris made a short film called Mr. Happy Man, about Johnny. I promise this will make your heart sing on this Valentines Day!

"We human beings gotta learn to love one another." Johnny Barnes

Mixing Humor with Humanity

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What a hero! Texas radio personality, Hector Lepe, uses his morning show as a platform for paying it forward. Last week, he got to feel what it is like to be on the receiving end of kindness paid forward.

Feeling the Love

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There was an article in my local newspaper today, The Kingwood Tribune, about an 89-year-old high school substitute teacher in our town. Being a substitute is an underrated profession (I tried it b.r.i.e.f.l.y), I can't imagine doing it at the fragile age of 89! ! Pretty much a lion's den if you ask me. I knew this man had to be special.

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