The world we live in is an amazing place filled with good people. In these days, when numerous headlines are flooded with negative news, there is some good news which can bring a smile to our faces. These individuals and the communities as a whole have gone that extra mile to put a smile on a person’s face. Gestures like these keep humanity alive and ensure that good deeds are passed forward. Here is a list of 15 random acts of kindness by strangers that is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
1. The Ice Bucket Challenge helped the research community by funding the project that led to the discovery of a gene linked to A.L.S.
The Ice Bucket Challenge, also known as the A.L.S. Ice Bucket Challenge, was a viral hit on social media in 2014. The activity involved a person having a bucket of ice and water dumped over their head by another person or by themselves. The activity was undertaken to promote awareness of the disease trophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The participants also donated money to the A.L.S. association to help fund their research. The challenge took the Internet by storm, and supporters were able to raise a whopping $115 million for the A.L.S. Association.
The money was instrumental in funding research and development of new drugs to help people affected by the disease. The people affected by this disease undergo a rapid breakdown in their ability to control their muscle movement. The scientists have discovered NEK1, the gene responsible for causing this disease. The discovery was a result of a global, gene-sequencing effort involving 11 countries and 80 researchers called “Project MinE.” The challenge allowed the researchers to invest around $1 million in Project MinE. (1, 2)
2. A nearly defunct train station in Japan had plans to close but noticed a student was the only one using it. They decided to close once the student graduated from high school.
The Hokkaido Railway Co. decided to keep a defunct railway station open for a lone passenger, a teenage girl. The train would stop two times at Kyu-shirataki Station to help the teenage girl commute to her school located about 35 minutes away from the station. It would stop each morning to pick her up and drop her off at home in the evening. The Japanese train firm had decided to shut down its operation in the city owing to low ridership.
However, the company decided to keep this station open until the teenage girl graduated from school. The dedication of the company was immensely appreciated by the general public and netizens. Finally, on March 25, 2016, this journey came to a bittersweet end when the teenage girl graduated from school. The local residents and reporters gathered around the station to watch the train pull in for the last time. It received a warm adieu, and the staff members were thanked for their service. (1, 2)
3. NASA happily reported that the Earth is much greener with more trees than 20 years ago. The change was attributed to extensive tree plantation drives thanks to China and India.
NASA had recently reported that the Earth is much greener than it used to be 20 years ago. The green change has been attributed to India and China, the two emerging economies with a large population. The two nations have increasingly stressed the importance of tree planting that has led to this effect. China has garnered much attention with its ambitious tree-planting program to curb air pollution. In 2017, India broke its own record after volunteers planted a staggering 66 million saplings in just 12 hours.
The greenling phenomenon was first observed by researchers using satellite data. The satellite images that were taken 20 years ago were compared with recent images. NASA researchers observed that China and India account for one-third of the greening with only 9% of the planet’s land area covered in vegetation. Furthermore, the greening in both nations has also been attributed to intensive crop cultivation as well. (1, 2)
4. The automobile giant Volvo created a three-point seatbelt but specifically gave away the patent and information so that it could be used to save as many lives as possible.
Car manufacturing giant Volvo is considered to be a pioneer in creating safe cars. The company has built its reputation by selling safer cars, and they are credited with giving away their most important safety device. The three-point safety belt was a universal modern seat belt designed by Volvo engineer Nils Bohlin in 1959. The company’s engineer invented a seat belt that fit over a driver’s torso as well as their lap. Prior to its discovery, many companies used a simple, two-point waist restraint that did more harm than good in the event of a collision.
This safe invention could have fetched the company a fortune if it had been patented. However, as a noble gesture, the company refrained from patenting the essential discovery as it was considered to be a free life-saving tool rather than a profit device. Nils Bohlin continued to redefine safety in cars by working on side-impact protection and rear seat belts. For his outstanding contribution, he was awarded a gold medal from the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Science and inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame. (source)
5. A grocery store in Canada was unintentionally left unlocked and unattended on a national holiday. The only things taken were two packages of cherry tomatoes for which the person left $5 at the checkout, and the person had actually overpaid.
An unmanned store can be a looter’s paradise, however, a Canadian grocery store begs to differ. The Food Basics, a grocery store in Kingston, Ontario, was left unlocked on a Family Day. Family Day is a Canadian national holiday celebrated in February each year. Many customers who walked into the store were surprised to find the store open but without any employees.
A customer had shopped for two packages of cherry tomatoes and left $5 cash on the counter. A few customers alerted the local police who arrived at the spot. The cops contacted the store manager who found nothing was missing from the store. The store manager was astonished to find the products intact. They also found cash and an IOU note. It was later found that the customer had, in fact, paid extra for his packages of tomatoes. (1, 2)
6. An Iranian weightlifting champion auctioned off his Olympic gold medal to help raise money for earthquake victims. He specified that the medal belonged to his people.
In a heart-moving gesture, an Olympic gold medallist auctioned his medal to raise funds for earthquake victims. Kianoush Rostami, an Iranian Olympic weightlifter, bagged the gold medal by setting a new world record at the 2016 Rio Olympic games. In 2017, Iran was hit by a 7.3 magnitude earthquake that caused widespread damage and loss of lives.
The Iranian weightlifter came forward and auctioned off his Rio 2016 Olympics gold medal. He also announced that the proceeds from the auction will be used to help people affected by the earthquake. The weightlifter further announced that the medal belonged to his people. The announcement from the weightlifter received a lot of praise from the country’s citizens and from the global community as well. (1, 2)
7. A Cleveland fine-dining restaurant that hires ex-convicts has given over 165 former criminals a second chance in life. So far, 90% of them are employed, and none have re-offended.
A spark of a good deed can bring about a major transformation in the world has been proved true by a fine dining restaurant. The Edwins Restaurant located in Cleveland Shaker Square is well-known for its fine French cuisine. The most important and fascinating fact about this restaurant is that it is entirely run by ex-offenders. The trainees are part of the restaurant’s six-month “Restaurant and Leadership Training Program.”
The program was conceived by Brandon Chrostowski, a chef, and veteran of elite restaurants in Chicago in 2004. He spent nearly six years perfecting the pedagogy since its opening in 2013. The ex-offenders are provided training on cooking, knife skills, and white-tablecloth service. The program has been crafted to equip them with the skills and confidence to rediscover their life. To this date, over 165 ex-offenders have graduated from this program since its conception. Chrostowski proudly states that more than 90% of them are employed, and none of them have returned to prison. (1, 2)