Today I have a whole batch of good people for you, from a large company that went the extra mile for an ailing employee, to a group of doctors giving free care, to a community with a big heart, to a music star giving to good causes. I figured we needed some ‘extra goodness’ today, plus I felt I should make up for skipping Jolly Monday this week, so let’s get started.
A company with heart …Sainsbury’s is the second largest chain of supermarkets in the United Kingdom, but unlike most big corporations, they take care of their people, or at least the store in Kenton, north London does.
Ms. Salomon was only in her 50s when she was let go from her job as a bookkeeper because she had become disorganized. Too young to retire, she applied for a job as a picker, putting together orders for online customers to pick up, at her local Sainsbury’s store. At first, all was well, everybody loved Ms. Salomon, but after about a year, she started becoming more confused, and was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. But Sainsbury’s did not let Ms. Salomon go … instead they did everything in their power to make her feel useful and needed, valued. For the next four years, Sainsbury’s did everything to keep Ms. Salomon on the team. They changed her hours; they stayed in constant contact with her family so they could provide updates on her condition at work; they regularly retrained her; and they kept her co-workers informed on her condition.
When the disease progressed to a more debilitating stage, Sainsbury’s even created an entirely new job for her as a “tote box cleaner”. According to her son, Doron …
“To my mum, cleaning the tote boxes became the most important job in the world. If she didn’t do it the store would fall apart. The sense of self-worth and pride undeniably helped with aspects of her Alzheimer’s, such as giving her something to talk about in social situations. There have been so many times Sainsbury’s could have let her go. Instead, every time my dad was called in for a meeting, fearing the worst, it was because they had noticed a decline, were concerned about her, and wanted to know what more they could do to help.”
How many companies would go that extra mile?
Eventually Ms. Salomon’s disease became so bad that she was forced to leave Sainsbury’s, but her son reports that dozens of UK Sainsbury’s stores have held weekend fundraisers for Alzheimer’s awareness and research in Ms. Salomon’s honor. What an amazing thing this company gave to Ms. Salomon. A big company with a big heart.
Giving a little bit of their time …
The Islamic Center of Cleveland in Parma, a suburb just south of Cleveland, Ohio, serves the traditional function of a mosque, but it goes a step further. A group of 20 Muslim doctors have founded the Cleveland Ibn Sina Clinic, using the spare, unused rooms in the mosque to see patients. There is something else unique about this clinic, besides its location … its doors will be open to uninsured patients from all religions and walks of life, and all of the clinic’s services will be free of charge – the only thing that patients will have to worry about is the cost of prescriptions.The doctors will travel from across Akron and Cleveland in order to volunteer at the facility on a rotating basis. Other costs will be covered by fundraisers and donations from the Muslim community. According to Dr. Mansoor Ahmed, one of the doctors volunteering his time, as well as the Medical Director of the CISC …
“’Healthcare is not a privilege for some, it is a fundamental human right,’ is not just a slogan but the very foundation of our mission. There are far too many people in our communities who do not have the medical coverage they need and are reluctant to seek the medical care that they need. We have the ability, we have the potential, we have the resources. Giving a little bit of your time, I think, goes a long way in making a difference in people’s lives.”
Indeed, it does. Two thumbs up to this wonderfully caring group of doctors and to the larger Muslim community of the Greater Cleveland area for doing such a wonderful thing!
Lee Hamilton is the head custodian for Puster Elementary School in Fairview, Texas. He has been with the school ever since it started in 2010. Everybody loves Lee’s warm smile, his can-do attitude. Recently, though, Lee found that he must have extensive (read expensive) back surgery, otherwise he will soon be confined to a wheelchair.
Now, in addition to his custodial duties at the school, Mr. Hamilton takes care of his wife who suffers with multiple sclerosis (MS). Lee was uncertain how to pay for the surgery and pay the other bills while he was off work, but the Fairview community came to the rescue, starting a GoFundMe account to help Lee with his medical and other bills. Thus far, the community has raised $24,000 … $7,000 more than their initial goal of $17,000. See what a community can do when they pull together? Heart-warming, isn’t it?
Hello Dolly!Now I know a lot of people don’t think much about hearing that a celebrity donated to some cause or another, and often I don’t give it much thought either. It is true that sometimes it is done as a publicity stunt, or for name recognition. But here’s a lady who has been a philanthropist all her life. I could actually do an entire post about Dolly’s good works, from literacy to environmental projects.
This week Dolly met with all of the fire chiefs from the eight volunteer fire departments in Sevier Country Tennessee to thank them for their role in fighting the 2016 wildfires that killed 14 people and destroyed more than 2,500 homes.Through her Dollywood Foundation’s My People Fund, she donated $20,000 to each volunteer fire station and gave $40,000 to their area training center. Dolly’s My People Fund also provided $5,000 each to more than 800 families who lost their homes in the wildfires.
For the love of a teddy bear …
Ryan Paul is 12-years-old, lives with his parents in Woodbridge, New Jersey, and Ryan has autism. Ryan was playing in his room one day, when suddenly he couldn’t find his teddy bear named Freddy. This might not be a big deal to most kids, but to Ryan it was, and he panicked, then calmed enough to call 9-1-1- to report his missing bear. His message, however, was rather cryptic …
“The teddy bear fell down again. Don’t worry, I’ll rescue you. Goodbye again, see you again.”
Since the dispatcher could make neither heads nor tails of the situation, per department protocol, Officer Khari Manzini was sent to check out the situation. As luck would have it, sending officer Manzini was fortuitous because he had prior training from POAC (Parents of Autistic Children) and was able to figure out what Ryan wanted almost immediately.
Officer Manzini rolled up his sleeves, got down to business and helped young Ryan find his tiny teddy named Freddy. It’s a small thing, and yet … sometimes those mean so much. How many police officers would simply be annoyed at having been called out for such a thing, would have sternly admonished the parents, then turned on their heel and left? But not Officer Manzini, and for that, he gets my thumbs up!
Well, folks, I hope today’s stories have helped you to remember that there is still a lot of good in our world, and I hope you leave this post with a bit of a lighter heart than when you came to visit. Have a happy Wednesday, and remember to be a ‘good people’.