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Tampa boy to hold public birthday party to teach kindness, raise medical funds

An inspiring Tampa boy has been in and out of the hospital his entire life, and still makes time to bring kindness to all. He wants to spread his message by throwing a birthday party, open to everyone and anyone.

Eric Piburn is on a mission to teach the art of kindness to others. He has been doing this for a while, and sometimes from his hospital room.

He has brought cookies to officers, and flowers to nurses. The 12-year-old has had four heart surgeries, but still needs more work to his lungs and heart.

But there is still time for presents, he said during his visit to Good Day Tampa Bay.

His party will be held on February 3 from 11 am. to 3 p.m. at Old McMickey’s Farm in Odessa. Piburn said there will be cake, superheroes, fun, and most importantly, activities to teach kindness.

“It’s going to be one of the best birthdays in the world,” he said. “I rest my case.”

Old McMickey’s Farm is offering discounted tickets for the public party. The money will go toward Eric’s medical fund.

Guests will be treated to cupcakes, pizza, and visits from members of the 501st Legion dressed as Star Wars characters. There will also be superheroes and princesses from the organization, Costumers with a Cause.

Eric said he cannot wait to see Spiderman and Captain America. His birthday was actually in December, but he didn’t get a chance to celebrate it because he was in the hospital.

“Last year was really tough,” his mother, Randi, explained. “So, we’re just going to celebrate this year. We’re going to have a good time and have a great time and have a great party.”

“Let’s give mom a round of applause,” Eric said while clapping.

In 2018 Eric was named “Kindness Warrior of the Year” by Julie Weintraub’s Hands Across the Bay.

“We just intend to make 2019 his year of kindness,” said Amanda Romero, who is organizing the party, “and hopefully get Ellen’s attention.”

During Eric’s time in the hospital, he also watches TV, and one show caught his attention: The Ellen DeGeneres Show. The message from the show is one that has stuck with him: Be kind to one another.

And Eric hopes it’s a habit that he can teach others, and, maybe, get the attention of Ellen DeGeneres, herself. One day, he hopes to meet her.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Volunteer firefighters receive heart-warming act of kindness at Auckland café

The crew at the Silverdale Volunteer Fire Brigade in north Auckland have thanked an anonymous woman for an amazing act of kindness on Sunday.

A group of four volunteer firefighters were sitting for lunch at an Orewa café when a woman walked in, paid for their food and drinks, wished them a happy New Year, and promptly left.

The Brigade posted to their Facebook page on Monday thanking the “Lady in Pink”.

It said the four firefighters were on a 24 hour shift and were “unaware of the kindness that was to be bestowed upon them by a total stranger”.

The post said the meal helped the team to keep up energy at a callout later in the day.

“You paid for four meals and four drinks, which well sustained the team a couple of hours later at a vegetation fire in Dairy Flat.”

The volunteer service said the four were “absolutely stunned mullets at the time” and apologised for not thanking her before she left the café.

“So, Lady in Pink – a very heartfelt THANK YOU from Sunday’s Red Watch crew at the Silverdale Volunteer Fire Brigade.

“You are a beautiful human being.”

They followed up the post with a list of ways to “pay it forward every day” including picking up litter and leaving a good review for a local business.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Richmond woman spreads kindness across the world with special signs

For Gini Bonnell, it all started with a whiteboard, a marker and a message that focused on two words, “Be kind.”

“I believe kindness is a choice,” said creator of “Be Kind,” Gini Bonnell.

The signs are a way for Bonnell to get her message out to the world on how to cope with any negativity the world has to offer.

“I was just getting very concerned with all the negativity that was surrounding us,” said Bonnell.

So, Bonnell decided to plant a sign in her front yard with a message saying, “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”

Little did she know, that seed would blossom into something much bigger down the road.

“I started noticing as people were going by they were honking their horns and waving and I thought, ‘hmmmm,’” said Bonnell.

From there, the “Be kind” movement was started.

“It’s all word of mouth, friends telling friends, strangers telling strangers,” said Bonnell.

She calls her friends who help her pass them out, angels.

The best part, she does this all out the kindness of her heart – everything is totally free. Each sign is made with love, as she believes kind words or gestures have the power to change someone’s day.

“It’s the golden rule, it’s so simple and so powerful,” said Bonnell.

The “Be Kind” signs hanging in schools, businesses and people’s yards serve as a daily reminder to do the right thing.

“Everybody has a story to tell. Everybody has something going on,” said Bonnell. “Forget about yourself, and think about the other person and be kind.”

Bonnell said if the sign can touch just one heart, then its purpose has been served.

I’m not an artist, I can barely draw a straight line,” said Bonnell. “But I knew in my heart that I wanted to do something.”

Even though you can find hundreds of signs hanging up across the country. Bonnell wants you to make your sign of kindness to continue the movement.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Students’ acts of kindness set good example

Understanding the importance of lending a hand, of helping others in need, is something everyone should know. But, it’s a particularly good lesson for children to learn early — to set a foundation of kindness and generosity.

Some elementary school students recently demonstrated why that is, and how the positive impact of helping has no age parameters.

ABC-Stewart school students in Grades 1-6 recently raised nearly $1,000 through a community service project to help children who are less fortunate have a brighter holiday season. They used the money to buy gifts for nine children served by the United Way of Bartholomew County.

The students brought the gifts back to school, where they wrapped them prior to the gifts being taken to the United Way. The students also made holiday cards.

The project resonated with the students.

“It feels good to give a gift than to receive one,” sixth-grader Sam Gupta said.

That sentiment was also expressed by the actions of 10-year-old Teddy Littrell, a fifth-grader at Southside Elementary. He came up with the idea to spread holiday cheer for nursing home residents by creating homemade Christmas cards and pairing them with warm socks. Littrell called the project Santa’s Socks and Sweets.

The gifts were delivered recently by Littrell and willing family and friends. Not only did the gifts warm the hearts of the nursing home residents, but helped heal the hearts of family members who have been saddened by the loss of an uncle a little more than four years ago.

What the students did was put a smile on the recipients of the gifts and lift their hearts during the holiday season, and show that it can be better to give than to receive.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Shovel-wielding strangers approach cars and houses in St. John’s – with kindness

The kindness of strangers may not be able to melt away the snow, but it can certainly clear it away. Some of it, anyway.

A group of about ten people gathered in downtown St. John’s Saturday morning to help clear away some of the snow for folks who may not be able to clear it themselves after a two-day blizzard buried the city in 46 cm of snow earlier this week and a new storm set to bring 40 mm of rain and high winds moves in.

Mark White was out on Saturday morning with a shovel, trying to clear out cars and driveways for people who might need a hand.

“Some people just can’t get out to do it, some people are probably away and when they come back, hopefully now they’ll see that their car is shoveled out, or their driveway. Anything to do to help,” said volunteer Mark White.

The event was organized by project Kindness but White said he and his fellow snow-shovelling Samaritans were joined by a few people who just happened to be passing by.

“We had an extra shovel so we passed off the shovel to them and even they jumped in to help us.”

And that’s exactly what Hasan Hai, the founder of Project Kindness, hopes will happen with every good deed the groups organize.

“I started doing very small things because I didn’t know what impact it could have, I’m just one person. So I did a small thing and then I did a slightly bigger thing and then it grew and grew. And I realized how much potential and how much power I had as just one individual doing things. And then I wanted to help other people realize that as well,” he said.

 Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Family grateful for kindness to mum after fall in Fleetwood

A Cleveleys pensioner was helped by the kindness of strangers after a day out shopping took a nasty turn for the worse.

Ida Ashworth, 87, had travelled into Fleetwood town centre when she had a serious fall and suffered a broken wrist and fractured pelvis.

Suddenly a van driver stopped and helped her into the nearest shop, Mike Sanderson Electricals on Lord Street, and then called an ambulance.

While waiting for it to arrive the shop assistant wrapped her in blankets, found a hot water bottle and made her a cup of tea.

Then the van driver drove three miles up the road to Ida’s street to inform her neighbour about what had happened, so they could tell Ida’s family over in Yorkshire.

Frail Ida, who has two grown-up children, was taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital and is now convalescing in Clifton Hospital, St Annes, after the accident.

Now her daughter wants to thank those who helped her and say it has affirmed her faith in human nature.

Jan Burg, of Tadcaster, Yorkshire, said: “These days we hear such terrible things we forget that most people are actually kind and thoughtful.

“Our family would like to offer our thanks to the staff of the shop who really went out of their way to help our mum.

“It would also be nice to know who the man was who stopped to help my mum.

“He also rang for his wife and she came and stayed with mum until the ambulance turned up.

“He didn’t have to do that but he thought nothing of it.

“What lovely people there are in Fleetwood.”

Ida spent much of her life in Rochdale but moved with her late husband to Cleveleys around 20 years ago.

Jan said her mum was still at Clifton Hospital but was in good spirits while she recovered from her injuries.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Tauranga Community Foodbank volunteer Sue Wiseman’s mission to create happiness for others

Sue Wiseman knows a thing or two about putting together a parcel.

And, through 14 years volunteering at Tauranga Community Foodbank, Wiseman also knows plenty about human kindness.

The retired Tauranga woman is well known on the city’s volunteer scene, having also helped with New Zealand Red Cross and Rape Crisis Centre.

“I’ve always done volunteering, for as long as I can remember,” Wiseman said.

But it was the Tauranga foodbank service where Wiseman has held the longest tenure.

There was something “totally different” at the foodbank, she said.

“You are kept busy the whole time and you meet some amazing people. Our volunteers here are all really lovely, most of us are quite old.”

Wiseman said her children had left home and had their own families so she had plenty of time to offer, and no day was the same.

“There is lots of variety which I really enjoy,” she said.

“It’s just a good feeling to be helping people. It gets quite emotional sometimes. Some people are embarrassed and don’t want to be here. You have to make the effort to make them feel welcome, knowing they’re no different from anyone else.”

Wiseman said she did not know how many of the foodbank’s clients would manage without the service.

“We’ve had people living in their cars. One woman went to put her food parcel in her car but she had all [her possessions] in there too.

“I just can’t imagine how tough it must be for some people.

“I feel really sad for them I wish we could do more.”

Like all foodbank volunteers, Wiseman works one day a week. However, she has her name down for extra days to help when needed. Now retired, Wiseman spends what time she doesn’t give to volunteer work to gardening and walking.

For Wiseman, helping others is her own personal – and very rewarding – mission.

“I’m lucky myself, in my own life. I have a lovely husband, lovely grandchildren. If I can make someone else’s day happier, it’s the least I can do.”

Foodbank manager Nicki Goodwin said Wiseman was “an absolute treasure”.

“[She is] so kind to our customers and always putting her hand up to do extra shifts at foodbank,” she said.

“Sue has the best sense of humour and surprises me often with some sassy joke or comment.”

Christmas Appeal

So far the Bay of Plenty Times Christmas Appeal has helped raise $61,918.35 for the Tauranga Community Foodbank, and a total of 22,586 food items, as of 9am Tuesday.

The last day people can make Christmas donations to the foodbank is Friday. If you would like to help the foodbank in any way please get in contact with the foodbank on Brook St or the Bay of Plenty Times on Cameron Rd, Tauranga.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

You can also subscribe to us on iTunes, Spotify blubrry, TuneIn, Stitcher and IHeartRadio

Russian biathletes get a taste of Canadian kindness after locals lend rifles

Hay River and Fort Smith locals scrambled together 16 rifles to lend to Russian biathletes

Milena Tsaranenko, a Russian biathlete, says she’s grateful for the rifles that were lent to her team.

A group of Russian athletes risked being scratched from the Arctic Winter Games, but ended up winning several gold and silver medals thanks to the kindness of Canadian strangers.

Russian biathletes, en route to the Northwest Territories for the games, were stripped of their rifles at the Russian border last week due to confusion over documents.

That hold up risked their chances to compete, but locals in Hay River and Fort Smith, N.W.T., didn’t let that happen — jumping at the chance to help their international guests.

“Late [at] night, I got a call … informing me that the Russian teams were stuck at an airport, without guns,” said Robert Plamondon, an AWG official for the snowshoe biathlon.

“Basically got dressed, ran outside, and started going through all the guns right away.”
Russia’s Yamal biathletes, en route to the N.W.T. last week, were stripped of their rifles at the Russian border, risking their chances of competing at the Arctic Winter Games.

Thanks to locals, they ended up winning gold and silver Ulus with their borrowed rifles.

Plamondon said he rummaged through the Hay River Ski Club’s inventory and found some rifles. He said a group of locals made several phone calls to eventually secure 16 rifles for the Russian teams — borrowed from former athletes and other residents.

The Russians ended up winning three gold Ulus and four silvers in Monday’s biathlon events, thanks to their borrowed rifles.

‘Thank you,’ says Russian athlete

The kindness was met with gratitude from the athletes, who are from the Yamal Peninsula in Russia’s Far North.

“On behalf of Yamal, I just want to say thank you to the organizers here, actually being able to get together that many guns in a very short period of time. And helping us to keep the games going. It’s a very big deal for us,” said Milena Tsaranenko, one of the Yamal athletes, through a translator.

Tsaranenko noted how awkward it was to adjust to the new rifles — the one she borrowed was shorter, lighter and has a different stock, she said.

“It’s actually quite different,” said Tsaranenko. “It’s not my gun.”

Biathlon coach for Team N.W.T., Chuck Lirette, said it’s difficult for athletes to adjust to different gear.

“It would be really devastating for the kids, because you get a feel for your rifle,” said Lirette, who’s also an AWG biathlon official.

“[Like] golf clubs. You have a feel for your golf clubs, and if you use somebody else’s set … they have a different feel.”

On Tuesday, Lirette said he joked with one athlete from Yamal about giving Lirette one of his two gold Ulus.

“I said one for you and one for me — one for athlete, one for [our] rifle,” Lirette said. “He actually undid his coat and he was actually going to take one off and give it to me.”

Lirette said the athletes were very appreciative of the gesture.

 Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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School’s thanks for kindness

A festive collection at a West Yorkshire school saw hundreds of donations flood in in the run up to Christmas.

Parents, students and staff at Woodkirk Academy in Tingley, Wakefield, collected hundreds of presents throughout December which were then divided up and distributed as gifts to local families, the Radio Aire ‘Mission Christmas’ appeal, and Morley Salvation Army.

The school has now issued a huge thanks to all those who got involved in the campaign, to help bring a little festive joy to somebody else’s Christmas.

In 2016, Mission Christmas generated over £15million worth of gifts and donations which were distributed to more than 350,000 disadvantaged kids across the UK – with 23,396 of recipients in West Yorkshire.

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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Hong Kong Woman Rollerblades Across America With No Money Relying on People’s Kindness

A 23-year-old woman has been rollerblading across the United States without money, food, and water for a noble cause.

Yanise Ho, who is originally from Hong Kong, attributes her love of adventure to her family. She has been interested in traveling after her visit to New Zealand when she was 15.

The rest makes history. She studied in Rome at 16, headed to Washington for college at 17, moved to California at 18, and backpacked across Central America and Europe at 20.

In 2016, Ho rollerbladed from Savannah, Georgia to Miami, Florida and founded “The Bladress Scholarship” project through One Girl Can.

Now, she is en route from Miami to Los Angeles — a 6,000-mile journey — to raise funds for girls’ education in Kenya.

“My journey is inspired by a desire to empower girls worldwide. All funds raised will be donated to One Girl Can, to provide bright and deserving girls living in poverty in Kenya with secondary school scholarships,” Ho wrote in her fundraising campaign.

“Education is crucial to ending the vicious cycle of poverty, child marriage, and gender inequality. More importantly, it provides an opportunity for girls to reach their full potential and pursue a life of their choosing.”

Without basic needs at her disposal, Ho’s journey is far from comfortable for most people. She travels approximately 30 miles a day.

However, Ho said that her rollerblades have become a part of her body.

“Rollerblades become a part of my body, it’s not a bicycle, I have to figure out how to lock it up, it’s a part of me,” she told ABC Action News.

She also makes a bet on people’s kindness, believing that there is more good than bad in today’s world.

“My mission is to show that there are amazing people in the world, every day I have no plans, just faith and the goodness of people. Somehow, I always stumble upon the best people in the world.

“Every day I feel like everyone is my family, and this is how the world should be.”

The fact that Ho is Asian has somehow given her attention, but she believes that it has little to do with the hospitality she receives.

“People would come up and assume that I’m a foreigner. They would just come up and ask if I was from China or Japan without me even speaking,” she told AsAm News. “I just know that they just don’t know. It’s not that they’re trying to be mean.”

“If I were a huge black male, [the strangers who have hosted her] would be frightened to talk to me at first because racial prejudice has been a deep-rooted issue. It might take them a lot longer to win someone’s heart but if they have the sweetest personality, most people would offer a hand.”

She also cited another rollerblader, Mike on Blades, a White man on a similar journey.

“A lot of people think that the only reason why a lot of people are nice to me is because I’m a young Asian female. He’s pretty much doing a similar thing as me. He’s a big bearded guy, 6’2”, 200 pounds. He also has this cheerful, bubbly personality and that’s why he’s been receiving a similar kind of kindness.”

So far, Ho has raised $12,000 for her campaign through Fundrazr. She hopes to raise $60,000.

Donors commended her efforts:

“You are amazing, Yanise. May you reach your goals, and may your journey continue to be safe. Thank you for being you.”

“[May] God bless you and keep you safe during your journey!”

“You are the best!”

Read the full story here

You can also find us on Twitter @holakindness and Facebook The Kindness Project, we would love to hear your kindness story’s so please get in touch!

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