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“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”

— Mark Twain

Dear  <<First Name>>,

Our newsletter is usually focused on a theme and with every edition I strive to highlight positive news. This time I am taking a different approach by dedicating this issue to spotlight Ukraine stories. Over the past month, we have seen the terrible tragedy of war unfold and the impact of the invasion on the Ukrainian people. Amongst this humanitarian crisis, we have also witnessed incredible bravery, courage, and acts of kindness.

In this issue, I share several positive stories of people, who have strived to help by doing incredible acts of kindness at this difficult time. In the monthly spotlight, I have chosen to share one of my favorite quotes by Amelia Earhart, an American aviation pioneer and author. She was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. Her words on kindness resonate today as they did decades ago.

By highlighting positive news stories on Ukraine, I want to acknowledge that in the midst of darkness there is light. In my column, I concentrate on how kindness begins at home. There are ways that we can help one another to make life better. Please keep sharing your #Positivity® stories and bumper sticker photos by sending submissions to info@moshepopack.com. And, don’t forget to share our newsletter with family and friends and encourage them to sign up!

With blessings for peace and stability,

Moshe Popack

If you like our #Positivity® Newsletter...You’ll 💕Our Podcast, Common Denominator. Each week, I have inspiring conversations with great thinkers.

11-year-old Ukrainian boy flees to safety in Slovakia by himself with phone number scrawled on hand

An 11-year-old Ukrainian boy has been hailed as a hero after fleeing his war-torn country by himself — with only a plastic bag, a passport and a telephone number written on his hand.

World Central Kitchen: José Andrés' organization has served more than 1 Million meals to Ukrainian refugees

Disaster relief organization World Central Kitchen began serving hot meals within hours of Russia's initial invasion of Ukraine and quickly set up at eight border crossings between Ukraine and Poland.

Hero vet braves Ukraine battle zone to rescue injured animals

32-year-old Polish veterinarian Jakub Kotowicz launched a rescue trip into the war zone last week and has since rescued around 200 cats and 60 dogs from Lviv in three convoys.

Airbnb and its Community Raise More Than $40 Million and Offers 150,000 Temp-Homes for Ukraine

People from around the world booked 61,000 nights in Ukrainian cities via Airbnb, likely not one ever planning to check-in, or reschedule. It was part of a creative social media campaign to channel funds into besieged cities where something like aid drops or supply trucks can’t reach, and saw $1.9 million raised for Ukrainians in just 48 hours.

Italian Government Announces It will Rebuild the Mariupol Theater

The Italian government, through the Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini, announced its decision to finance the reconstruction of the Mariupol theater.

'Cook for Ukraine': Russian and Ukrainian chefs join forces for food fundraiser

Ukrainian chef Olia Hercules and Russian chef Alissa Timoshkina, long-time friends living in London, are leading a food fundraising initiative for UNICEF.

From Strength to Strength: Finding Success, Happiness, and Deep Purpose in the Second Half of Life

By Arthur C. Brooks

Written by bestselling author, Harvard professor, and the Atlantic's happiness columnist, Arthur Brooks, From Strength to Strength is the roadmap for finding purpose, meaning, and success as we age. This book is a practical guide to help you navigate through life. At the height of his career at the age of 50, Arthur Brooks embarked on a seven-year journey to discover how to transform his future from one of disappointment over waning abilities into an opportunity for progress. Drawing on social science, philosophy, biography, theology, and eastern wisdom, as well as dozens of interviews with everyday men and women, Brooks shows us that true life success is well within our reach. By refocusing on certain priorities and habits that anyone can learn, such as deep wisdom, detachment from empty rewards, connection and service to others, and spiritual progress, we can set ourselves up for increased happiness. READ MORE

Things to make you smile

Fugitive Flamingo on the Run From Kansas Zoo for 17 Years Pops up in Texas

One of two flamingos that escaped from a Kansas zoo during a storm 17 years ago has been spotted on the coast of Texas. Life on the lam continues to agree with flamingo No. 492, aka Pink Floyd. READ MORE

Amelia Earhart was an American aviator who set many flying records and championed the advancement of women in aviation. She became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, and the first person ever to fly solo from Hawaii to the U.S. mainland. During a flight to circumnavigate the globe, Earhart disappeared somewhere over the Pacific in July 1937. Her plane wreckage was never found, and she was officially declared lost at sea.

Spreading #Positivity®

We are so excited that you are helping spread a positive message everywhere you go!  Let’s keep spreading #Positivity® together! Send us your photos and we will feature them in the next newsletter and on Facebook.


This month, I am featuring an interview with YMP Family Foundation’s co-founder, my lovely wife, Yaffa. She is the creator of Neighborhood Farms USA and has been spearheading the development of this incredible program since its inception.


Q&A with Yaffa Popack
 

Tell us about why you created the Neighborhood Farms USA program?
It started with our establishment of the YMP Foundation, which was founded because of our firm belief in contributing to society in a meaningful way. Both of us believe in providing opportunities to communities to be self-sustaining as well as helping make America healthier. As a mother of young children, I am very focused on topics of health and well-being. Nutrition is particularly important to the growth and development of all children. For this reason, I envisioned a communal space in our apartment buildings, where residents could come together to garden, interact, and also learn about nutrition. I was driven by the idea that we could nurture healthy communities beginning with one community garden at a time.
 
What are the most important benefits?
Our community garden occupies an important place in the residential complex by providing a space to connect, access to healthy food, and a green space to relax with others. There is also a very important educational aspect to our community garden. Our residents are learning a lot, particularly about the benefits of plants and herbs. Some residents are even growing native plants from their countries. With the outlook that food is medicine, we are planning to host events with local chefs that can prepare food with fresh ingredients for the community. It’s exciting to see our garden take shape. A community garden can really transform a community helping it to develop a sense of cohesion and purpose. The benefits also include the access to fresh produce, which boosts mental and physical health by providing access to fresh and more nutritious options.
 
What is your long-term vision?
We would love to expand this program throughout the state of Florida and the country. Personally, I would love to see it in more of our buildings and to partner with other organizations to implement the program in more locations. As community gathering places, the gardens can play a vital role in creating stronger and healthier communities. During these challenging times, it is essential that we find opportunities to encourage community growth and long-term solutions for a healthier society.
 
What is your favorite thing about the project?
I find it especially moving to see families, with children, and our senior residents connecting in the garden. Not only is the garden beautiful and green but it offers a space for connection and learning. It provides a purpose around which the residents can come together and allows people to connect easily and to learn more about gardening as well as nutrition. It is also particularly rewarding to witness the excitement of the children to learn more about gardening and how quickly they engage on issues of health and nutrition. This ability to encourage learning and to instill a sense of community as well as promote healthy living from an early age is exactly my vision for Neighborhood Farms USA.
 

Follow us on social media for updates! @NeighborhoodFarmsUSA

 

The Time for Kindness is Now

The images from Ukraine are heartbreaking. Over the last month, it has been incredibly difficult to watch the devastating scenes coming out of the Ukrainian. The footage of people fleeing, lives lost, homes destroyed, communities ruined are all distressing. Close to four million Ukrainians have been forced to leave and make perilous journeys to neighboring countries. Like many others, I have been focused on finding ways to help, particularly in terms of Ukrainians refugees coming to the U.S.

In doing so, I have come to the realization that showing kindness during difficult times is crucial. It is precisely in moments of difficulty that the true nature of humanity can be revealed. For me, kindness is paramount and it must begin at home. As we try to help others, the most important thing we can do is recognize that acts of kindness can be part of our daily lives. We can start locally in our communities. As we watch scenes from thousands of miles away, we can demonstrate our caring by showing empathy for our neighbors and others, who may need our help. With this in mind, here are some tips on being kind locally during trying times.

Check in with your family and friends network to offer a helping hand and support in your community.

Host local events to fundraise for donations. Coming together as a community through a bake or yard sale is not only building bonds locally but taking concrete action to benefit others faraway.

Open your home and heart to helping those affected by crisis. This helps build community by getting to know new people and lending a hand to different charitable efforts.

Find charitable organizations to support as a volunteer or donor.

Above all, it is important to take action. It is not about big gestures but taking small steps to help others. The key thing you can do is to lend a hand and support others. Showing  kindness to others creates a chain reaction of compassion, which goes a long way to slowly repairing the wounds brought on by crisis.

#Positivity®

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Moshe Popack
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4500 N State Road 7 Ste 100
Lauderdale Lakes, FL 33319-5868

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Moshe Popack · 4500 N State Road 7 Ste 100 · Lauderdale Lakes, FL 33319-5868 · USA