All posts tagged: inspiring stories

Christopher Ategeka: From orphan to entrepreneur

“Life got really good,” Ategeka laughed. “They bought me a bicycle and gave me three meals a day, which is a luxury, by the way.” Talk about perspective. It’s a bit of a challenge to summarize Christopher Ategeka’s amazing life story in a few words, but I honestly feel that I have to share this with everyone I know right now. Christopher is an orphan in Uganda who lost his mother and father to AIDS at the age of seven. With his love of learning burning in him, he attempted to go to school through a charity and was denied due to lack of funds. When he was 12 however, an American couple, Michael and Martha Helm, offered to sponsor him through a church-based NGO and orphanage Y.E.S. Uganda. His drive and discipline impressed the couple, who continued to offer him the chance to live with them in California so he can continue his education. But the story does not end there. Christopher then proceeded to graduate with a masters degree in UC Berkeley and has since founded a non-profit organization, Rides for Lives. His group’s …

A 99 year-old woman’s mission

  Although I’m not at retirement age yet, I sometimes wonder what I would do when I am not able to work anymore. How would the days look like to begin with? If I’m blessed with good health enough to live up to my 90s and jetpacks aren’t around yet, would I read books? Continue blogging? Spoil my grandchildren? Do old-people dances with my husband to “pop classics” such as Katy Perry (jk!)? Maybe all of the above. What didn’t cross my mind immediately is what Lillian Webber is doing now: She is making a dress each day for a child in Africa. In the past two years, Lillian has made more than 840 dresses for less fortunate kids — she even personalizes each one so that the recipient can call it her own. The frocks are sent overseas through the nonprofit organization, Little Dresses for Africa, who then delivers these pretty blessings to orphanages, schools, and churches. Lillian’s goal is to make 1000 dresses by May 6th, which will be her 100th birthday. What will she do after that thousandth dress? “When I get to that …

Cup of Good - Richie Parker, Armless Engineer

Richie Parker, extraordinary engineer

  Let me be the first to say that I am not immune to complaining. While I try to remember all the good things in this world and everything that I should be grateful for on a daily basis, I still have days where I am just a brat. I am not alone on that one, I think. Waking up in the morning to exercise is “hard,” commuting to a work place where there is a ton of traffic can get “hard,” washing a car is “hard.” As Richie Parker demonstrates, however — it’s all relative. Richie Parker was born without arms. Yet he did not let this stop him from doing what he wanted to do — from riding bikes, driving cars, to becoming a respected NASCAR engineer in Hendrick Motor Sports. He uses the computer on a daily basis by placing the keyboard and mouse on the floor for his foot to operate. He uses his chin and his shoulder to wash his car, and he uses his toes to weld — among other things! …