Non-Profit Auto-Body Shop Helps Community Overcome Poverty

"Non-profit" and "car repair shop" don't often appear in the same sentence. But maybe they should. Consider how dependent many of us are on our vehicles, and you realize that car repairs are totally essential to daily life for tens of millions of Americans—but only if you can afford them.


"The heat has affected my son and I," Rodney Walker explained to us in the video above, "because he's diabetic, and it's freezing in the car..."

Rodney, a former Navy recruiter, was talking about a time in his life when he wasn't getting a large paycheck, and was struggling to fix his car, which he needs to drive his son around and do daily tasks. Fortunately, Lift Garage in his city of Minneapolis offers "low-cost car repairs for low-income Minnesotans." And Rodney does not take for granted: "Having heat is going to make it so much easier for us."

Cathy Heying is the Executive Director of Lift Garage. At age 38, Cathy decided that she wanted to create a business that would help people in her community who were financially strapped for whatever reason. So Cathy went back to school for auto technology, and then opened Lift Garage.

"There are so many challenges that people face in just trying to survive each day," Cathy said to us. "Many of us who have cars and have resources, we take it for granted that we're going to be able to get our car fixed when we need to get it fixed. We don't realize that for many people not having a car could mean homelessness or going further into poverty."

Every city and town in America should be so lucky to have a Cathy Heying and Lift Garage as a resource and inspiration to always help one another.

This HooplaHa Original was produced and edited by Chris Peck. For more HooplaHa Originals, check out our YouTube channel!

Dan's Coffee Runs Bring Warmth To Chemo Patients and Staff

Coffee and a smile are sometimes the best medicine. When Dan Dewey's father was being treated for cancer, Dan found himself following a routine in a situation which needed a little perking up.

Thus began what has become known as "Dan's Coffee Run". Every Thursday morning, Dan does a special coffee run for the staff and patients at the Michigan Cancer Institute in Bloomfield Hills, bringing Starbucks Coffee and a lot of smiles to the patients and providers at the cancer treatment center.

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This Organization Feeds Their Entire Community

If you are a kid and your bed is a lumpy, old couch or a cold, hard floor and you leave home for school without a regular breakfast, you will not excel in your classes. This daily struggle is shockingly common in many areas of the country and it sets many children on a downward spiral at an early age that is difficult to recover from. This is where Meals By Grace is making a difference.

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Anonymous Authors of Love Letters Uplift The Lonely

While it is exciting to see the bold type of a newly arrived email from an old friend or the pulsing dots of a long awaited text, there is still something special about the arrival of a hand written, stamped envelope in your home mailbox.

For those who are facing personal difficulties, adjusting to new circumstances, or just feeling isolated, the physical experience of handling a letter, opening the sealed side of the envelope, and sliding out a beautiful card brings the thrill and anticipation of contact with another person, something they may been missing for long time. Fulfilling this need is at the heart of an inspiring organization called "The World Needs More Love letters".

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A Father, A Son, And A Hockey Fan’s Dream Come True!

Coca-Cola, Shaw's Supermarkets, and the Boston Bruins have teamed up to make one lucky Bruins fan's dream come true. After purchasing a Coke from Shaw's in the New England area, contestants were encouraged to enter for a chance to win a "Player for a Day Experience" with the Boston Bruins.

The lucky winner's name is Mark Karolkiewicz. Mark has been a Bruins fan his whole life and even though he had the opportunity to be a Bruins Player for a Day, he selflessly gave the prize to his son Eric Karolkiewicz, also a die-hard Bruins fan!

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Dancing Away From Illness And Onto The Stage

The hall lights dim…..a hush comes over the audience … the command "places everyone" is given… there is a palpable stillness in the air as the first notes of the opening piece float out of the speakers and hover above the stage…. the curtain rises with a whir … the lights come up… its time …

These are the moments a performer lives for. The hours of solitary sweat and toil practicing their craft in sparse, small rooms, are the dues required for the joy of putting their skill and craft out there for an audience hungering for something special and moving.

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Singer, Poet, Activist, Lupus Survivor - Shanelle Gabriel

"Rock out...live your life....live your art!" This was Brooklyn, New York native Shanelle Gabriel's response to her diagnosis of Lupus, an autoimmune disease where your body's immune system, that usually fights infections, attacks healthy tissue instead.

Shanelle first noticed something was off when her fingers turned blue and hurt in the cold and she could not seem to shake the feeling of fatigue no matter how well she slept. After being diagnosed in 2004, Shanelle decided that her health would not be something that would limit her success.

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NFL Player Mentors Kid Dealing with Mom's Cancer

For families with a member who is battling cancer, life can seem lonely. The trials and tribulations of such a scary disease can be very intense—how could anyone who hasn't gone through them understand?

Walk With Sally is an organization founded to provide loving support to children whose parents or siblings are fighting cancer, and they helped make a very special match between two people who could understand one another's experience personally. Will Svitek, a former NFL professional, lost his father to cancer when he was just 31. He joined Walk With Sally for the express purpose of mentoring youngsters who were struggling in similar situations. That's how he met Rocco.

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These Fearless Freefalling Females Will Amaze You

Did you know that today is Women Rock! Day? To celebrate and inspire, we found a special group of women who are doing what they love as they defy gravity and perform breathtaking aerial acrobatics thousands of feat in the air!

This group is known as the Joy Riders and they aren't afraid of much. The all female, international skydiving and base jumping team fall through the sky for fun. They represent joy, passion, inspiration, and work to motivate their audience to go after what they want most in life.

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