Heroes in our midst

It’s another Saturday celebration of those people who make a difference in my world, and the world around me.

Glynn Young is the author of Faith. Fiction. Friends where he blogs everyday on diverse and fascinating topics. One day you’ll be carried along for a 60 mile bike ride, witnessing every passing leaf, feeling every straining muscle and the next, you’ll be wandering the streets of a city from his youth, experiencing the sights and sounds and people of New Orleans. In his words I never fail to come away enlightened, excited and inspired. Glynn is also a huge supporter of other bloggers, constantly sending out tweets linking to their blogs and, every Saturday, presenting a list of interesting blogs to visit. From prose, to poetry, to photographs, Glynn’s Saturday Good Reads offer up an eclectic and rich sampling of offerings to explore. Thanks Glynn for all you do to support your fellow bloggers!

Glynn Young is a hero.

I first met Onalea Gilbertson three years ago when she waltzed into my office at the homeless shelter where I used to work and exclaimed, “I’m going to form a singing group with clients of the shelter and anyone else who wants to come  and join us.” Three years later, The DI Singers are singing strong and this summer, Onalea’s oratorio, “Two Bit Oper-Eh?- Shun?” will be mounted in NYC as part of the New York Musical Theatre Festival, July 9 – 19. Onalea is tireless in her efforts to create space for Calgarians from all walks of life to share their stories through theatre and song. She’s also a wicked awesome songstress and a wonderful friend!

Onalea Gilbertson is a hero.

As a twelve-year-old, Grade 7 student, Tamara was excited about a Pay It Forward project at school. She had a friend who had experienced homelessness when her parents marriage broke down and the mother and she ran for safety. Tamara’s idea was to make jewellery, sell it, and give all the proceeds to homeless shelters in the city. From her first time participating in the Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre’s, Art From the Heart art show and sale in December of 2007 to February this year, Tamara’s “Heartprints – Kids for a Cause” foundation has raised over $8,400.00 to support efforts to end homelessness in our city. Now a Grade 12 student, Tamara continues to devote time and energy to creating and selling jewellery, knitted scarves, hats and crocheted dish-rags so that she can continue to give back. Tamara is a young woman with amazing heart and beautiful soul reflecting the love and beauty of her mother Bev who has supported Tamara every step of the way.

Tamara is a hero.

I first heard Natalie Merchant‘s Ted Talk performance two years ago, and, every so often, whenever I want to be moved, inspired, or simply to enjoy the moment, I click on the link to her talk to listen to her sing old lullaby’s into life.  And, because this is the month of hearts and romance, I wanted to share something inspiring of the musical kind.  (Plus, I haven’t listened to her for awhile and I really wanted to hear her this morning!)

Natalie Merchant is a hero.

Who are your heroes?  Done any celebrating lately?

6 thoughts on “Heroes in our midst”

  1. Yes when I met Onelea I was instantly created in some way…I too was brought up with music….When in Ontario my oldest sister played for Onalea….I think I just wanted her to know my musical background…Yes classical…and Onalea knew the song…Yes so my hero sits wait patiently to hear this ol voice of mine…I lost it somewhere…but she continues to gently push me…When I here a chickadee it reminds me of her and another..They just get up and sing their hearts as loud and proud as………..so yes Onalea is a hero…awaken my music within…..She is one inspiration….


  2. Oh! I really like this idea, Louise!

    Hummm…for today, the first hero coming to my mind shall remain unnamed. That’s because she works for my daughter at a well-known american coffee house. This dear woman has, every single day since becoming ‘aware’, recycled any cardboard she finds in her path. I am not kidding. Even the cardboard boxes coffee products are shipped in. Or the cardboard other people leave on the sidewalk, in alleys, anywhere she goes. She clips the corners, flattens and smashes boxes and when the trunk of her car is full, she goes to the recycling center.

    I think of her whenever I sneak a cardboard box in my trash because I’m too lazy/busy/disorganized to recycle. Her conscientiousness has inspired her co-workers (and even their mothers) to change our wasteful ways.



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