Manager – Teacher Leadership
Katie joined TELLAL from her position as Vice Principal at GEMS Wellington Academy, Silicon Oasis, and in 2013, was awarded the prestigious GEMS Core Values Award.
No matter where you are from it does seem to be getting harder and harder to watch the news without getting a little down trodden. Lately all the headlines appear to be detailing sad shifts in social change, threats of combat or planetary doom. We might be surrounded by (almost) perpetual sunshine here in Dubai, but for those of us who have emigrated here, the news from home or aboard can be a tough pill to swallow. Lately stories about Brexit, Climate Change, Trump, Kashmir and Iran have left people worried about families and finances, especially when you feel so distant. While some of these stories can spur us to take action to help situations or spark positive changes in our own lives, many are very much beyond our control. But it isn’t all bad. In an effort to end the week on a more inspiring note, we thought we would do a round-up of the ten news stories from around the world that actually will put a smile on your face. The fact is that the human condition is complicated and so there is plenty of good that goes alongside the bad. Here we are celebrating those individuals and groups who have gone out of their way to aid, inspire, engage and cheer up others in meaningful ways. What better way is there to start the weekend than by reading about the goodness in the world!
You may well have caught the recent story about one of the best commencement addresses ever in which US multi-billionaire Robert F. Smith promised to pay off the student loan debt of an entire graduating class of Morehouse College. Well, now he has gone a step further and has pledged to cover the debt of their parents as well. He will donate $34 million to a dedicated Morehouse College Student Success Program that will cover all the debt accumulated to fund the student’s education, whether it is theirs or their parents.
Sometimes we are lucky enough to capture the smallest of moments that have the biggest amount of heart. That happened recently for Jill Metiva Schafer when she snapped a Detroit policeman lending a kind hand. Officer Thomas spotted a homeless man trying to shave without a mirror and immediately dashed over to offer to help.
When it comes to fighting the effects of climate change, there are few solutions more effective than the planting of trees. The establishment, growth and protection of natural habitats and forests creates huge areas that actively suck carbon out of the air and prevent the damaging build up. Any pioneer who sets out to increase the foliage count in the world, is certainly a planetary hero. One such individual is intrepid farmer Anand Dhawaj Negi, who retired from his government position to plant trees in the mountainous north regions of India. In land once considered “uncultivable” Negi now cares for more than 160 acres of forest as well as food and fauna.
Many of us will have flown several times during our stint in Dubai and you may well have encountered your fair share of good flight attendants, but even you might be surprised at the kindness of a recent Delta attendant in the United States. Sixteen year old Ashley was born deaf and was taking her first ever solo flight from Baltimore to Rochester. Upon taking her seat, flight attendant approached and shared a detailed note that explained how everything worked on the plane and all the safety information she would need. After landing Ashley shared how important the note had been to hear and its viral circulation has promoted Delta to commit to improving conditions on board for those who are hard of hearing. If you are interesting in learning sign language in Dubai you can visit The Pomegranate Institute.
A viral video that attracted super fans in both Ellen and Will Smith recently showed the kindness of kids in school after being filmed by a classmate. Football players Antwann Garrett and Kristopher Graham noticed Michael Todd being bullied for wearing the same clothes to school every day and decided to step in. They approached him with a donation of brand new clothes so he could mix up his wardrobe and know that someone had his back.
Sadly there are lots of people who don’t mind mistreating animals, but sometimes there are people who will go out of their way to help them, every single time. Recently two mother dolphins and their calves became stranded in a Florida waterway having mistaken bridges to be barriers to their exit. With the water being so low in salinity, there was huge concern that the trapped animals would be in real danger. To help them escape to freedom and fresher waters, a team of marine experts rushed to the scene and entered the river to form a human chain which was used to shepherd the cetaceans back to safety.
Have you come across any heart-warming stories lately? Have you caught some news that made you happy? Let us know and help us spread the joy! Join the conversation via our social media platforms Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Linkedin or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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