All year long, Care2 Cause bloggers fearlessly speak out for social justice. They punch holes in pomposity. They question the status quo.
They also report on stories that are cause for celebration. So in the last days of 2011, here are 13 of the year’s stories that inspire hope. With so many to choose from, I decided to limit myself to one from each of the Care2 Cause topics. That’s why there are 13, which will feel like a lucky number when you read these stories.
Every day until New Yearís Eve, I will share more stories that have inspired me in 2011.
It’s no wonder this video went viral. Andrew Grantham is a Canadian entertainer. He is also a friend of animals. His Talking Animals YouTube channel receives millions of hits because of the way he seems to crawl inside the minds of animals and give them voice.
To date, more than 79 million people have viewed this conversation between the filmmaker and the dog he is teasing. Any profit Grantham generates from his Talking Animal videos supports the Nova Scotia SPCA.
In spite of the difficulties they have experienced in the wake of 9/11, a Gallup poll found that Muslim Americans are more optimistic about their future than any other religious group in the United States. They are also overwhelmingly loyal to their country, even though they were far more likely to say that they had recently experienced discrimination.
“The prejudice and discrimination are definitely there, and that’s something we have consistently seen in the data,” said Mohamed Younis, a senior analyst at the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies. “But at the same time many of the people in the Muslim-American community seem to be doing relatively well, and part of their doing well is being able to be full-fledged Americans, to participate in the American experience.”
When she learned her Arcadia, California, school district was planning to lay off 65 teachers, 5th-grader Jocelyn Lam tucked all of her savings, some $300, into an envelope and handed them to her teacher. He was deeply touched and took the envelope to the principal. There was not a dry eye in the office when the staff read Jocelyn’s hand-written letter:
Dear Super Indendant (sic) and Board Members,
Hi. My name is Jocelyn Lam. Iíve heard that 65 positions will be laid off and ten of them are from my school! This really breaks my heart. Those teachers had taught me a lot. They guided me to fifth grade. If it werenít for them, I wouldnít be here right now writing this letter. They changed my life.
I save all this money I earned from chores and high grades. Now I want to donate all this money to save the teachers. I really hope this $300 will help save the teachers who are about to be laid off. I also hope that this is enough to save more than one teacher. PLEASE put this money to good use. I beg you! SAVE THE TEACHERS!
News of Jocelynís gift spread like wildfire and inspired fundraising efforts. Maybe it even inspired some of the people whose constant calls for tax cuts keep education on the chopping block.