• Maddy Barnett takes time off from her business to draw on a window. (Facebook / The Love Exchange)Maddy Barnett takes time off from her business to draw on a window. (Facebook / The Love Exchange)

    When seven-year-old Maddy Barnett of Mississauga, Ont., grew out of one of her favourite shirts, she had an idea. 

    She told her father: “Let’s give it to kids who need it,“ The Loop reports.

    This small idea led to the creation of  The Love Exchange, a charity designed to help children in need.

    Barnett’s charity encourages other children to donate their clothes so that they can be shipped to kids in need, perhaps to those who have fled the civil war in Syria.

    Barnett has even managed to line up some corporate sponsors, and she’s raising money to ship the clothes by selling bracelets at $2.00 a piece.

    Maddy Barnett's bracelette sales allow her to pay for shipping. (Facebook / The Love Exchange)Maddy Barnett's bracelette sales allow her to pay for shipping. (Facebook / The Love Exchange)

    The Love Exchange has even received attention from Canadian pop singer Anastasia A, who wants to work with Barnett to write a song about the young girls project.

    Barnett’s charity has already inspired

    Read More »from “The Love Exchange”: A seven-year-old girl’s charity to help other kids in need
  • Anh Cao celebrates following graduation from the Univerity of Toronto. (Twitter / @UofTNews)Anh Cao celebrates following graduation from the Univerity of Toronto. (Twitter / @UofTNews)

    He was recognized as the top graduate from Canada’s largest university, received straight A-plus marks, won the prestigious John Black Aird award, and was honoured with a silver medal from the Governor-General.

    What Anh Cao, an eager 23-year-old international student from Vietnam, has been able to accomplish at the University of Toronto is incredible — he also happens to be a molecular biology prodigy and a teaching assistant so talented, he now trains other tutorial leaders. But what makes Cao’s story even more impressive are the myriad obstacles he had to overcome along the way.

    When Cao first arrived in Canada four years ago, he was studying on behalf of the Vietnam Government with a scholarship of $116,000. Unfortunately, Cao’s scholarship was no match for U of T’s steep international tuition as the costs for his schooling had reached $33,000 per year.

    To Cao’s disbelief, his money ran out at the start of third year and in order to make ends meet, the young man was forced to move

    Read More »from University of Toronto whiz kid goes from homelessness to top of his class
  • Figo the service dog hailed a hero after leaping in front of bus to protect blind owner

    “He’s a hero. He protected me through thick and thin.”

    An injured Figo is taken away after saving his owner from a potentially fatal accident. (The Journal News)An injured Figo is taken away after saving his owner from a potentially fatal accident. (The Journal News)

    A service dog becomes a local hero after jumping in front of a bus to protect his blind owner.

    The golden retriever named Figo and his owner, Aubrey Stone, who is visually impaired, were crossing a street in Brewster, N.Y. on Monday morning when a school bus carrying children rushed toward them.

    Figo resting after his leg wass placed in a cast. (Facebook / Middlebranch Veterinary)Figo resting after his leg wass placed in a cast. (Facebook / Middlebranch Veterinary)

    At the scene, witnesses said the dog jumped in front of the moving vehicle. 

    “The dog took a bit of a blow,” Brewster Police Chief John Del Gardo told Journal News. “And he did not want to leave her side. He stood right with her. He was there to save her.”

    Both the owner and the dog were injured. Stone suffered from a few broken bones to the ankle, ribs and elbow. She also sustained a head wound and is recovering in a hospital in Danbury, Connecticut. Figo had to have surgery for his broken leg at the Middlebranch Veterinary clinic. 

    “He’s a hero,” Stone said to ABC News. “He protected me through thick and thin.” 

    His heroic actions are getting a lot of media attention. He is now a viral

    Read More »from Figo the service dog hailed a hero after leaping in front of bus to protect blind owner
  • Melissa Powers. (Facebook/For the Love of Laundry)Melissa Powers. (Facebook/For the Love of Laundry)

    Laundry is a chore that some dread and others relish. And while waiting for clothes to dry may not be everyone’s ideal morning on the weekend, for some Canadians it’s an expensive ordeal to have clean sheets and fluffy, fresh towels.

    Enter For the Love of Laundry, a London, Ontario-based start up helping families in need complete this seemingly-mundane chore since 2014.

    Melissa Power knows how difficult it can be to scrape together the change, not to mention the time, to visit the local laundromat.

    Power's detergent products are now available in local grocery stores. (Facebook/For the Love of Laundry)Power's detergent products are now available in local grocery stores. (Facebook/For the Love of Laundry)“I had a hard time making ends meet, so certain luxuries often had to wait, and laundry fell into that luxury category,” the formerly single mom said to The Huffington Post.

    A few years ago, in an attempt to save her family some money, Power started making her own laundry soap. After donating extra soap to local social service agencies, Power realized that those who couldn’t afford laundry soap probably couldn’t afford the trip to the laundromat as well. Power then started selling her soap

    Read More »from Formerly single mom's new business helps the poor do their laundry for free
  • James Harrison sits with two babies. (Growing Your Baby)James Harrison sits with two babies. (Growing Your Baby)

    James Harrison hates the sight of blood. And while he’s not unique to this feeling, the 78-year-old Australian has given blood more than 1,000 times – and that’s a lot of time spent staring at the ceiling.

    “Never once have I watched the needle go in my arm,” Harrison told CNN. “And I can’t stand pain,” he adds.

    For someone with a fear of blood, Harrison’s own plasma has had quite the influence. Known as “The Man with the Golden Arm,” Harrison has donated blood a few times a month for the past 60 years, saving millions of young lives across Australia.

    After undergoing a chest operation in 1951, the then 14-year-old received 13 litres of blood from unknown donors and decided to become a donor himself.

    What followed was miraculous: Harrison’s blood was thought to be the answer to a national issue, containing a rare antibody that would eventually save lives.

    Up until 1967, thousands of babies were dying each year across Australia due to rhesus disease, a condition where the mother’s blood

    Read More »from (Not so) Bad blood: Australian man's blood saves millions
  • Meet Lillian Weber, the 99-year-old woman who creates and sews a new dress every day for a girl she will never meet.

    Weber gets to work on a new dress every morning at her home in the small town of Bettendorf, Iowa, to benefit Little Dresses for Africa, a Christian nonprofit agency that sends dresses overseas to impoverished girls in Africa. 

    Weber first began her project in 2011 and has since made over 800 unique and one of a kind dresses. She is slowly reaching her goal of sewing 1,000 dresses by the time she turns 100.

    Even though Weber is fast at her craft, she always takes the time to make each dress extra special, personalizing each design with a pattern, appliqué or stitching detail. All in an effort to ensure that each girl that receives a dress feels beautiful.

    And even though she is almost 100, Webber has no desire to stop or slowdown. 

    “It is just what I like to do,” Weber said in a interview with Quad-City Times.

    “If I’m still able to do it I’ll continue all the way

    Read More »from Sew generous: 99-year-old woman makes a dress a day for girls in Africa
  • Teen completes 57-mile Cerebral Palsy awareness walk with his brother on his back

    “We want to show people his struggles, what he has, and what we can do to make it better."

    Hunter Gandee and his brother, Braden.Hunter Gandee and his brother, Braden.

    Hunter and Braden Gandee bring a whole new meaning to the term brotherly love.

    “Way to go Gandee, way to go!” supporters chanted as 15-year-old Hunter Gandee neared the end of the second-ever Cerebral Palsy Swagger walk in Michigan with his eight-year-old brother on his back.

    Hunter and his brother, Braden, who was born with the neurological disorder, were met with a modest crowd of supporters as they crossed the finish line and marked the end to the three-day awareness walk.

    After the 57-mile walk, Hunter thanked anyone who has taken an interest in his story because he just wants to “raise awareness for a condition that [his] brother has to suffer and go through each day.”

    “We want to show people his struggles, what he has, and what we can do to make it better,” he told a group of reporters.

    In the first Cerebral Palsy Swagger walk, Hunter carried Braden 40 miles, reports MLive. But this year, he decided to add an extra day to visit more communities along the way.

    “It was great to

    Read More »from Teen completes 57-mile Cerebral Palsy awareness walk with his brother on his back
  • Man beaten up for trying to build community centre gains support online

    “I am in good health and my wounds will heal in time."

    Ronald Moon Jr. wanted to do something constructive for his Cincinnati neighbourhood by turning an old home his father bought years ago into a community center. Instead, the project that he put months of effort towards kept getting broken into and burglarized.

    This week Moon came across the people who have been breaking in, and in a video he posted to YouTube, he said “this is what they did to me.”

    In the video, his face is shown to be bloody and bruised, with scratches and open cuts on his back and along his elbows.

    Left out of options, the deeply upset Moon took to the video sharing platform to vent his frustrations and share his dreams of doing something positive for his neighbourhood.

    “I’m tired of struggling,” he told the camera. “I’m just trying to do the best that I can for my people.”

    But instead of giving up, Moon created a GoFundMe page to help get the community centre built and running.

    The Internet felt his pain and his inspirational story went viral.

    “This is really hard

    Read More »from Man beaten up for trying to build community centre gains support online
  • Ed Sheeran exchanges charity donations with a young fan in Ottawa

    “That’s the coolest thing anyone’s ever done," said Sheeran. "Thank you."

    Ed Sheeran poses for a photo with his most philanthropic fan, Piper. (Twitter/@MaulerMauler)Ed Sheeran poses for a photo with his most philanthropic fan, Piper. (Twitter/@MaulerMauler)

    Ed Sheeran, who got his big break from writing a song about a woman who he met while he was volunteering for a shelter, proves once again how great of a guy he is.

    Before his sold out show at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, he partook in a question-and-answer media scrum.

    Co-host of The New Hot 89.9’s The Morning Hot Tub, Mauler, told his audience that his daughter, Piper, is a huge Ed Sheeran fan. So instead of having him ask Ed a question, he handed the mic over to her, the Ottawa Citizen reports

    “What’s your favourite charity?” she asked the singer-songwriter.

    After telling her about the East Anglia Children’s Hospice, where his mom works, Piper pulled out a fistful of money and said “here’s 25 pounds from my birthday money to donate to that charity.”

    Piper’s grandparents gave her 50 dollars for her birthday, explained Mauler, and she went to the bank to convert it to pounds so that she could donate it to Sheeran’s charity of choice.

    “That’s the coolest thing anyone’s ever

    Read More »from Ed Sheeran exchanges charity donations with a young fan in Ottawa
  • Christian, pre and post-haircut. (Deeanna Thomas/Facebook)Christian, pre and post-haircut. (Deeanna Thomas/Facebook)

    Eight-year-old Christian McPhilamy is the centre of attention for his selfless act today, but his last two years haven’t always been quite as easy.

    The boy from Melbourne, Florida saw a TV commercial about pediatric cancer two years ago, his mother Deeanna Thomas told Florida Today, where he heard about St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital and the challenges faced by kids dealing with cancer. It inspired Christian to grow his hair and, on May 20, he cut off one 12-inch and three 11-inch ponytails to be mailed to the Michigan-based charity Children with Hair Loss.

    Christian's hair in ponytails, ready to be chopped off. (Deeanna Thomas/Facebook)Christian's hair in ponytails, ready to be chopped off. (Deeanna Thomas/Facebook)

    While Christian’s intentions were entirely noble, his peers didn’t always see the good that he was doing and Thomas says Christian was bullied for having his long hair.

    “Some people tried to call me a girl,” Christian told Florida Today. He says he didn’t feel good about the comments, but wanted to keep working towards his goal.

    “I just wanted to give a wig away.”

    Scott Norris buzzing off the last of Christian's long hair. (Deeanna Thomas/Facebook)Scott Norris buzzing off the last of Christian's long hair. (Deeanna Thomas/Facebook)

    In a Facebook post, Thomas shared Christian’s story:

    He

    Read More »from Boy endures years of bullying to donate hair to children's charity

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