After losing her 15-year-old daughter Lili to a genetic condition, Laura Talmus turned her grief into an effort for other children. Lili was born with Alpert syndrome, which made her look different, and became a trigger that caused her to be bullied and eat lunch by herself in the library or bathroom stalls in middle school. After Lili passed, Laura put together a video honoring her and celebrating her life. When she showed it, she realized Lili's classmates were shocked to learn about Lili's isolation, and that many other children felt disconnected like her daughter. “I was absolutely blown away when I saw how many kids raised their hands and wanted to talk about how they felt isolated," Laura told "Reasons to Be Cheerful." In 2003, teens spent 150 minutes a day hanging out in person with friends.In 2020, that number went down nearly 70 percent, to 40 minutes a day. In response, Laura and her husband channeled their grief into a nonprofit focused on raising awareness around youth social isolation. Their flagship, No One Eats Alone Day, encourages students to mingle and learn about social isolation, an issue that is rising among young adults. Today, February 16th, 2,500 schools across 50 US states will participate. The day is filled with games, art projects, and conversation starters, all housed in a 'Belonging Box' that schools receive for free. "This is about making inclusion a little bit more cool and acceptable. All tides lift boats," Laura poignantly captures. Every student has a place at the lunch table.

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