Ordinary People Do Extraordinary Things

By Ashley Benavidez

AshleyMany of us empathize with the homeless man collecting cans from dumpsters, or the mother with her young children migrating from shelter to shelter. We often tune in to our favorite television network and see commercials funding starving children in third-world countries. It can be overwhelming to subconsciously place ourselves in all those situations, so even though we empathize, we immediately want to change the channel or look the other way.

Perhaps it isn’t that we don’t want to offer our help to these people, but that we don’t think we have anything to offer. It is true that we may not be able to do as much as we’d like, but don’t use that as an excuse to do nothing at all. If a lot of people all do a little bit, much would be accomplished.

Here are some examples of ordinary people, with no extensive funds nor enormous talents, but only the generosity of their hearts who founded their own charities:

8-year-old, Madison Beckmann, of St. Louis began “Coat-A-Kid” when she saw a little girl in her grade shivering without a winter coat. The non-profit organization has coated over 10,000 kids since November of 2001.

Garrett and Kyle Weiss grew up in a soccer-loving family. The brothers played on organized sports teams throughout their childhood and in 2006, they received the opportunity to attend the World Cup Games in Germany. It was here that they came to the realization that organized sports are a luxury and not every child in the world had the same opportunities they’d had to play. So, the Weiss Brothers started Fund-A-Field, in order to give kids in Africa the same enjoyment they experienced growing up on a soccer field.

These individuals performed acts of gold, but you don’t necessarily need to start your own organization to lend your own helping hand. If you need to, start small. With the convenience of modern technology, you don’t even have to leave your computer chair to show some generosity to your fellow mankind. The best part is, it doesn’t have to cost you an arm nor pinky to get something started. allows users to answer a series of trivia questions in any subject they should choose and with every correct answer, 10 grains of rice is donated through the United Nations World Food Programme to help end world hunger. You may also create a free account to keep track of your total donations.

Play at (

Give a Donation to Coat-A-Kid here: (

Donate $1 to Fund-A-Field here: (

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” –Margaret Mead

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