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Jul 20, 2022 Read in Browser

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“We heart you, Alex!” his note read. Trebek was touched. "That's very kind of you, thank you. It cost you $1,995. You're left with five bucks," Trebek said, his voice cracking from emotion.

Hello everyone! There is something remarkable about generosity. When we experience it, or see it being shown to another, it fills and uplifts us. But why? Psychologists call it moral elevation. When we witness a kindness, we inherently draw on an experience of kindness we have felt in the past and it is brought to life. May you enjoy this week’s stories, reconnect with generosity and kindness, and be uplifted … and then pass it on!  

EVERYDAY HEROES

He Shares His Mother's Last Words - And Cash - With Strangers

He Shares His Mother's Last Words - And Cash - With Strangers

Kevin Cate

The story of a man who's given away more than $13,000 since 2014 to honor his mother's last message has inspired an outpouring of stories about the kindness of strangers. Kevin Cate was having breakfast at a Waffle House when a man sat at a booth with a pile of cash and pinned notes to the bills. "She didn't say 'I love you,'" he told Cate. "She said, 'love everybody.' So that's what I'm doing. Loving everybody." Cate's tweet, shared over 10,000 times, has inspired thousands to share stories, from a hungry single mother whose homeless coworker brought her sandwiches, to a man who gave $5 to a man just out of prison who needed bus fare but only had a prison check. "He went to the counter, … bought a sandwich and drink to get the change he needed, gave the food to a homeless guy outside, and got on the bus." Cate said he's reminded of the power of the example set when parents or a friend quietly helps someone else. "It was just something that had happened. And they always remembered it." Read Full Story.

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PLANET

European Nation Tries A Big Idea: Free Public Transit

European Nation Tries A Big Idea: Free Public Transit

Olivier Matthys | Bloomberg

Luxembourg's roughly 640,000 citizens enjoy the world's highest per capita income of any independent state. But even this privileged pocket of Europe faces a several challenges -- one of them is cars. Nearly nine out of ten Luxembourgish households have a car and one in ten families have three or more. To curb its driving addiction, this small country is trying an ambitious idea. In February of 2020, it became the first nation in the world to make all public transit entirely free at point of use. With the exception of first-class tickets, no one has paid a cent to ride a bus, tram, or train within Luxembourg's borders since. While the idea seems like something only a tiny, rich country like Luxembourg could make feasible, in reality lots of free transit programs are springing up in cities around the world. While free transit doesn't necessarily get everyone out of cars, they remove barriers for poorer citizens and create "frictionless" systems for everyone. Read Full Story.

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COMMUNITY

Indigenous Languages Being Taught To 10,000 West Australian School Kids

Indigenous Languages Being Taught To 10,000 West Australian School Kids

Sigmund | Unsplash

Students in Western Australia's public schools are now learning Indigenous languages at a record rate, with numbers growing across the state. The 24 Aboriginal languages taught across Western Australia (WA) now have around 10,000 students, up significantly from 6,000 just two years ago. Education Minister Sue Ellery said there is still a long way to go. "To understand it properly, we need to understand their language…That's an important contribution that education can make to maintaining the Indigenous culture," she said. Ellery says the expansion of Indigenous language lessons is an important part of how schools teach about the oldest living culture in the world. Read Full Story.

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COMMUNITY

Giving Away Her Dream Wedding Dress Sparked A Movement

Giving Away Her Dream Wedding Dress Sparked A Movement

Gwendolyn Stulgis

Gwendolyn Stulgis wanted a long-sleeve lace wedding dress with a beaded train, but her dream dress was far beyond her budget at $3,000. She decided to splurge. Yet, she also decided that, after her wedding, she would gift it to a bride-to-be who otherwise couldn't afford a gown. On social media, she specified the recipient should have a wedding date within a few months and must agree to dry-clean and pass on the dress to another bride, creating an ongoing chain. She passed along the dress in person to the lucky winner, Margaret Hyde of Portage County, Ohio, who is getting married in October. Stulgis created a Facebook group called Shared Dream Dresses. In the four weeks since the group launched, more than 2,100 members have joined and roughly 100 brides have received a dress. Read Full Story.

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INSPIRATION

Reaching Out Unexpectedly To A Friend Is More Appreciated Than We Think

Reaching Out Unexpectedly To A Friend Is More Appreciated Than We Think

Toa Heftiba | Unsplash

People consistently underestimate how much others are filled with appreciation when someone in their social circle unexpectedly reaches out—even if it has been a while, a new study has found. In fact, the more surprising the "reaching out" is, the more people tend to appreciate. Experiments involving more than 5,900 participants explored how accurately people think others might appreciate an attempt to connect. Half of the participants were asked to recall the last time they reached out to someone in their circle after a long time, while the other half were asked to recall when someone reached out to them. Participants asked to recall reaching out thought their gesture was significantly less appreciated than those who recalled receiving a communication. The researchers also found that people receiving the communication placed greater emphasis on the element of surprise, and this was associated with higher appreciation. Read Full Story.

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