by Jillian Kornsweig | February 12, 2013 | 0 comments
Love comes in many forms. Whether it’s for a person, an accomplishment, a memory, a pet, we’re excited for the famous upcoming day dedicated to celebrating love in all forms!
Today we’ve created a compilation of stories by Repair the World’s staff that reflect on the things, moments, people, and places from this past year that really made us stop and feel the love! Get to know the people behind Repair, and be sure to share with us what YOU love this Valentine’s Day.
"During the Hurricane, I went against city orders and walked a block outside of my apartment. I saw police officers wading up to their knees in water on First Avenue, working to keep the community safe. The reality facing me, away from the TV sets and radios, struck a chord. It's about a moment when you understand that what you see can be powerful enough to move you to act." - Marci
"This year, my new family through marriage (who don't speak English) made a concerted effort to communicate with me via email despite several failed attempts with online translation services. It truly brought to life the concept that communication isn't only about the written & spoken word…love breaks all barriers, even when you don't speak the same language." - Jacqueline
"I <3 NY! Having lived here my whole life, it can seem like nothing can shock you. However, I honestly continue to find new activities, people, and places every day that surprise me, and inspire me to continue to explore. A great example of this inspiration is the blog "Humans of New York" which captures a handful of the interesting stories this city is made up of, and provides my daily dose of inspiration and encouragement to stand out in a crowd." -Danielle
"Earlier this winter I accompanied three thirteen-year-olds for the afternoon, as they delivered packaged food to an elderly woman. Desperately, they searched for common conversation topics, as one ordinarily rambunctious teen yelled out the names of sports she MUST have played… "Basketball? Soccer? How 'bout shuffleboard?" "Well I did used to play golf," she said as his face lit up. "GOLF! Now that's a great sport! Putt-putt or regular?" There's no age limit on true friendship." - Amy
In September, my boyfriend told me that his favorite part of Thanksgiving is having everyone he loves in one place, and he wanted me to have that, too – so he was inviting my whole family to his parents house. After I put aside my fears of our parents meeting each other (was this the right time?!), my mom, my dad, and my step mom flew 3,000 miles to New York so we could all be together. It was amazing to be surrounded by so many people whose common denominator is their love for you, and for both of us! - Sophia
I have always aspired to help people reach for the stars and jump for joy. This took on an unprecedentedly literal meaning when I was tasked with making the most important legislative decision of my life. (Yes, more important than the theme of the 2000 High School Prom. Yes, it was Under the Sea.) Trampolines were at risk of extinction. At least of being zoned out of existence. At least in front and side yards in Huntington Woods, Michigan. In my capacity as a member of the Huntington Woods zoning board of appeals, I deliberated with my fellow board members and considered the deep philosophical implications of the code interpretation. Is a trampoline more like an ice rink or an adirondack chair? After what felt like hours of heated discussion, replete with doe-eyed children and curmudgeonly old people, I was honored and humbled to cast the deciding vote in a 4-3 decision to let the children (and adults who still act like children) jump another day. - Ben
"My cousin co-founded a non-profit that donates bikes to kids in low-income communities for the holidays. Seeing him in action not only made me proud of him, but also reminded me that my dedication to service and volunteering is something that was passed along through my grandparents who have modeled the spirit of giving to my entire family." - Aaron
"This year, a few things I loved: 1 - being reminded that while it's awesome that art and design sometimes try to re-create nature, nature still kinda rocks it out 2 that New Yorkers learned about communities outside their own zip code as they came together over Hurricane Sandy (that shook my hometown) 3-remembering that biking beats a taxi any day, and 4-that I avoided another year using the term "totes" when not referring to a bag." - Dara
"Over the summer, I traveled to Turkey with an incredible group of strangers from various background and had the unique opportunity to learn about the Turkish culture from an insider point of view. Through it all, I developed a new found appreciation of meeting new people, sharing proud experiences and walking away with a new understanding of cultural diversity!" - Aria
"This summer I was at Euro 2012 in Wroclaw, Poland with my brother. The fan zone for the Russia – Poland match was so full that you could not see the massive screens setup throughout. The whole city shut down to watch and the celebrations when Poland scored are something I will never forget." - Siobhan
"This year, I joined the rest of my fellow New Yorkers to celebrate the acceptance of love between all humans on that monumental summer day in July."
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by Jillian Kornsweig | December 3, 2012 | 1 comment
Giving is to Winter like sour cream & applesauce are to latkes: we hope you spread ‘em generously! Whether it’s serving meals to the hungry, supporting Sandy recovery efforts or igniting a child’s passion for reading, the festival of lights offers many ways to give. How can YOU spread good this holiday season?
In Repair the World’s hometown, thousands of people still need heat and light in their homes following hurricane Sandy. We hope you’ll help spread some good, and share some light in these darker times by giving a gift that no one – and no hurricane – should take away: education.
What can YOU give to promote literacy across the country?
||TIME: The Repair the World team is hosting a HoliDay of Service on 12/9 in New York City to create educational gifts for the students of PS 253 in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn! Packed with school supplies, a new book, and a battery-operated reading lamp, these literacy kits that will be donated to the students whose school was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. Older students will use these kits over winter break to read aloud to younger students, which means each book will have a double impact! Sign up to join us (space is limited so chime in quickly!). Can’t make it to the event? Organize one of your own with this tipsheet. You can also donate books through our registry here.
||BOOKS: Reach Out and Read is an incredible national organization that reaches almost 4 million (!) students each year. By “prescribing” books to their patients, pediatricians and medical professionals become education allies. You can join them by participating in our online book drive, which lets you virtually pick books to donate to local communities. Your efforts will help children build early literacy skills, making them more ready (and excited!) to read when they enter school.
||GELT (MOOLAH): With low-income, public schools facing a dearth of resources, the innovators at Donors Choose have created a way to create micro-change out of pocket change. Donors Choose gives public school teachers a platform to fundraise for the specific needs of their students. Donors Choose has thousands of pages posted by teachers in all 50 states. Requests range from laptops and microscopes to basic markers and crayons, and each dollar donated goes directly to fund teacher’s projects. Search by zip code to help a teacher in your neighborhood, or donate to classrooms that have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
||e-NSPIRATION: Share this post with your friends so they can get in-depth updates about how to hit the ground volunteering. If 8 (as in nights in Chanukah!) people list you as a reference when they sign up for our newsletter, you’ll get an awesome Repair the World tee – now available through our online store!
And don’t forget to check out our 8 nights of Sandy Service for tips on how your small differences can add a whole lot of light.
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by Jillian Kornsweig | June 14, 2012 | 0 comments
June is LGBT Pride Month, – a month that remembers the Stonewall Riots of 1969, while honoring the impact that LGBT community has had – and are having – around the world!
Repair the World wishes to honor this special month by offering some exciting ways you can get involved to advocate for a life of equality. We’re also highlighting some amazing LGBTQ heroes who are working to end hate across the world.
Inspiring People from the LGBTQ Community
Faygele Ben Miriam, Same-Sex Marriage’s Jewish Pioneer
Tablet Magazine profiles the incredible activist career of Faygele ben Miriam – a man who started Washington state’s battle over marriage more than 40 years ago. Written by Pulitzer Prizer winner Eli Sanders. This is a MUST read. Read more »
Brittany McMillan, Founder of #SpiritDay
At just 15, Brittany ignited a national movement in support of LGBTQ youth when she started Spirit Day. What began in 2010 as a Tumblr page devoted to the memory of LGBTQ or LGBTQ-perceived teens who lost their lives to suicide, turned into a global event that inspires millions of people to wear purple each year in a stand against bullying. Learn more »
Noam Parness, LGBTQ community organizer, activist, volunteer & all-around rock star
Noam Parness is a 22-year old rising senior at Queens College (and all around inspiring guy), who organizes for the LGBTQ community – both on campus and off. Noam took some time out of his schedule to talk about speaking on National Coming Out Day, the importance of building coalitions within a movement, and how Jewish tradition fuels his work. Learn more »
Upcoming LGBTQ events and opportunities
Kate Bornstein at Beit Simchat Torah Congregation
On June 22, meet the inspiring Kate Bornstein, Jewish transgender activist, theorist, playwright & performer. Her book, “Hello, Cruel World: 101 Alternatives to Suicide for Teens, Freaks and Other Outlaws” is an underground best seller, propelling Kate into an international position of advocacy for marginalized youth. She’s been honored by the NYC Council, received Keshet’s Hachamat Lev award, and garnered praise from civil rights groups around the globe. Learn more »
Celebrate being yourself! Jewish LGBTQ Teen Shabbaton
This August, join Jewish LGBTQ and allied teens for a weekend of fun, social activities and supportive learning sessions at the Isabella Freedman. Presented in partnership with Keshet and UJA-Federation of New York. Learn more »
CAMP PRIDE Summer Leadership Camp
Let’s go camp! Now you can develop friendships for a lifetime with other LGBTQ and ally college students, build your leadership skills and take action as a social justice advocate for a safer and more inclusive campus. Learn more »
Ways to Get Involved
Start a GSA at your school!
Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) are student clubs that work to improve school climate for all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. Did you know that the first GSA was the idea of a straight student? Find out how to start your own GSA or join an existing network. Learn more »
Volunteer with The Trevor Project!
Every day, The Trevor Project saves young lives through its free and confidential lifeline, in-school workshops, educational materials, online resources and advocacy. Trevor recognizes that volunteers are the backbone of the organization, and offers ways to get involved at all ages. Are you interested in volunteering? Learn more »
Volunteer with Human Rights Campaign!
Volunteering with HRC empowers you to be an important part in creating change for our country. Work with HRC to educate the public about critical issues in the LGBTQ community, mobilize your community to take action, expand the voice and visibility of the LGBTQ community, and bolster a a nationwide effort to end hate and discrimation. Learn more »
Pledge to Speak out against intolerance!
It Gets Better Project
Everyone deserves to be respected for who they are, and growing up isn’t easy. The It Gets Better Project was created to show young LGBTQ people the leavels of happiness, potential and positivity their lives will reach – if they can just get through their teen years.. Pledge to speak up against hate and intolerance. Learn more »
The Bully Project
A year ago, BBYO teens launched Stand UP for Each Other: A Campaign for Respect and Inclusion, a grassroots effort focused on creating safe and welcome communities for all Jewish teens. Show your support for the Stand UP Campaign by helping BBYO and The Bully Project raise awareness around this very serious issue and put an end to bullying. Learn more »
Do Not Stand Idly By, a Jewish Community Pledge to Save Lives
Do Not Stand Idly By asks the Jewish community to pledge to end homophobic bullying and harrassment of any kind in our synagogues, schools, organizations, and communities. As a signatory, you are supporting an fully inclusive Jewish community, and pledging to speak out when witnessing intolerance. Learn more »
Check out these additional resources on how to help make this world a more inclusive society for all.
So, how will you make this world a better place? Let us know @repairtheworld.
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by Jillian Kornsweig | May 7, 2012 | 0 comments
What words of wisdom do you have for this year’s graduating seniors? See for yourself below! (and stay tuned, as this will be updated frequently!)
In need of some inspiration for your own? Check out Repair’s Will Berkovitz’s Washington Post article, “The graduation speech I wish I could give.” and Aria Auebach’s “A Recycled Status: Reflections from a Recent College Graduate.”
- Congratulations! New adventures ahead: change your sheets, not your values.
- Identify the “why” of your life, not just the “what” and the “how”. Ask yourself, why am I here and what can I contribute?
- Think of every opportunity as a new beginning.
- The secret to surviving the real world is passion for your work, a best friend, and lots of chocolate.
- Find the thing you care most about changing in the world, and get to work.
- Sempre amor.
- Do what you want. Want what you do. Do a lot. Do good. Do it now.
- Life is a long arduous journey. Pack a lot of snacks to eat along the way.
- Get a job! But make it a meaningful one. It won’t be your first – or your last.
- ‘If you don’t know where you’re going (ethically, spiritually, physically etc.), you’ll end up somewhere else.’ Y. Berra
- Smile. People notice.
- Strive to learn something new every day and to laugh as often as you can.
- Whatever you do will impact the world. Make sure to do it for the better, and without wasting paper.
- Worry more about what you’re doing now than about where you’ll be in five years.
- All things are temporary.
- Care about what’s close to you and the rest will follow
- GO FORTH AND REPAIR!
- Stay true to yourself: Never lose sight of your dreams and goals, even if they change along the way
- Spend time with people you admire. Listen to them. Learn.
- “My last piece of advice is this simple… Persevere. Because nothing worthwhile is easy.”—President Obama
- Break your habits and try something out of our comfort zone. To fail is to learn.
- May your horizons be ever-expanding, your dreams be ever-evolving & your fulfillment be never-ending!
- Worry more about what you’re doing now than about where you’ll be in five years!
- Dear grads: save for tomorrow but live for today
- Class of 2012, we wish for u to have the strength to want a better world & the eagerness to make it happen.
- Congrats 2012 grads! Stand up for what you believe in, even if you have to stand alone.
- Share ur energy, excitement & passion w/ the world, it will lead u to great places & bring on great partners
- Don’t worry too much. Things work out.
What do YOU wish for the Class of 2012? Send us your bits of wisdom for our latest grads in the form below or tweet us at #RepairGrads12. Most ReTweeted wishes are eligible to win some great prizes from Repair the World!
Need some inspiration? Check out these inspiring commencement speeches mentioned here.
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by Jillian Kornsweig | May 3, 2012 | 0 comments
In a few weeks, graduating seniors – of high school and college – will don their caps and gowns, walk down the aisle, shake some hands, get their diplomas, smile for the camera and sit patiently while someone of some import delivers a commencement speech. Good—and really memorable speeches tend to incorporate humor, personal stories, amazing insights and other anecdotes intended to motivate a newly minted college grad.
You needn’t be the president, a rock star, a billionaire or a comedian to inspire others, but Repair the World wants you to share your wisdom with this year’s grads in 140 characters or less. In fact, we’ve been working up our own wishes here, and we’d love to include yours.
What do YOU wish for the Class of 2012? Use #RepairGrads12 or the form below to send your wishes to this year’s grads. Most ReTweeted wishes are eligible to win amazing prizes from Repair the World!
Need some inspiration? Before twitter and “viral” videos, the 1997 Kurt Vonnegut commencement speech went viral. (ok, it may be an Urban myth that it was at MIT. And, yes, we know that many of you weren’t yet out of middle school – but it’s a great read). Just last year, Amy Poehler rocked it out at Harvard, while the late Steve Jobs percolated some new ideas at Stanford in 2005. (A few more round ups here: Repair the World’s “What They Said” and this “Celebrity Commencement speech advice that you should actually listen to.”
Send us your bits of wisdom for our latest grads in the form below or tweet us at #RepairGrads12. Most ReTweeted wishes are eligible to win awesome prizes from Repair the World!
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by Jillian Kornsweig | September 26, 2011 | 0 comments
As we enter a new year,
may we rededicate ourselves to compassion and loving-kindness,
to acts of service and charity,
and to our responsibility to Repair the World.
From the staff and board of Repair the World,
we wish you and yours a sweet and joyous New Year.
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