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INSPIRATION

Articles

Bobby and Tia Norfleet: A Win for All

Like father, like daughter. They’re setting the pace for equality on and off the track. Bobby Norfleet is in a race without a finish line. As a retired NASCAR driver, he is no stranger to competition, overcoming obstacles, and achieving one’s goals, but his drive wouldn’t let him stop after his laps were done. Norfleet is now retired, but as one of the pioneer African American NASCAR racers, he says he’s obligated to introduce more African Americans to the joys of NASCAR racing. He vowed to not let injustice, ignorance, or bigotry stand in his or other African Americans way as they pursue the sport. Instead, he’s gone full-throttle to help NASCAR become more inclusive by mentoring other African American drivers. And, his most prized protege — his daughter Tia Norfleet — is on her way to her victory lap. Getting off the Back Roads Born in 1960 in Savannah, Georgia, during the Civil Rights era, Norfleet heard about protests and sit-ins to overcome ideologies associated with white supremacy, black inferiority, and segregation. Norfleet remembers watching his brothers street race

Painless Payment Plans

A groundbreaking humanitarian initiative gives patients access to free medical care in exchange for community service. Healthcare is so expensive in America. Did you know that medical debts are the leading cause of individual bankruptcies in the United States? Moreover, more than 65% of these patients utilize their insurance but still can’t cover the bill. Now, imagine if you could volunteer your time instead of paying your medical debt. Well, Dr. Demetrio Aguila III is a Nebraska-based plastic surgeon who is allowing his patients to do just that. He is also the president and CEO of Healing Hands of Nebraska, a medical and multi-specialty surgical practice that offers surgical solutions to chronic pain, as well as surgical treatments for conditions of the nose, throat, and ears. “I see too many people who need surgery, but just can’t afford it,” he says. “I decided to make it fair, as long as people agreed to pay the goodness forward.” Through his surgeries, Dr. Aguila has helped the immobile walk, veterans recover from chronic pain, alleviate the pressures of sinusitis, and many more

Victorious Visions and Triumph

He uses the power of graffiti art and poetry to compel viewers to protect their eyes from the damaging effects of blue and LED lights. His is a story of not just hope but of victory. His art springs forth from what he calls “Victorious Visions and Triumphs.” Relying on God and the universe, his prayer is to bring out Victorious visions one day at a time and to bring out the greatness that is a reflection of God. “Many pray for God to put something inside them. I realize it is the opposite; we have the resources within us and must learn to bring them out,” says the award-winning, multi-talented, and leading influencer, Tony Cruz. Visionary Bronx Legend PRESERVING A CULTURAL ART FORM. A MOMENT IN TIME WITH BRONX GRAFFITI LEGEND RAM 2 SIX TRAIN BOYS 1980S. PRODUCED BY @gforcetrackz pic.twitter.com/NUCf7BaOYv — TONY CRUZ RAM2 (@TONYCRUZRAM2) September 19, 2017 His urban surroundings and life in the boroughs of a world capital inspired Cruz. In 1984, he created a business model, monetizing his graffiti art talent to create advertising design

Fed with Faith: Where Hope and Compassion Reign

A life transformed, one man’s journey leads to honoring God by feeding and caring for the homeless. One Man’s Journey At 50, Jean Manganaro knows firsthand what it’s like to be homeless. Just before his 16th birthday, he came home to find his parents had left and abandoned him. He came from a dysfunctional family where there was abuse and alcohol. Wandering through the streets of South Florida, he sought scraps and shelter where he could, but there was no place for kids to stay or programs that he could turn to for help. Drugs and alcohol provided temporary oblivion, but his troubles soon found him in juvenile hall. Years passed as his life stagnated in the streets with dependency on substance abuse. At age 29, he turned his life over to God finding strength to become sober. He attended a 12-step meeting and met a man who offered him a place to live. Manganaro was given two weeks free rent but had to find a job during that time and start paying rent at the end of the two-week period.

Bethany Hamilton: Discover Hope in the Hard Things

We all have a story. And we are currently living it out. Gradually twisting and turning with sweet victories and sometimes bitter defeats. A mixture of honey and salt, like lemons and lemonade. Large or small, we encounter challenges as we live out our stories. Maybe you know “salt” as trials, tribulations, tests, traumas, hurdles, bumps in the road, setbacks, or heartbreaks. But regardless of the name, these more difficult aspects of life are part of the human experience. Where we differ is in whether we let the hard things we encounter define us. Does this salt enhance the flavor of our life or is it overpowering and making it something we can’t quite stomach? My story shifted significantly when I was 13. Faced with a trauma that altered my body, I had to answer: how will this affect my story? Fortunately, back then I had a steadfast mindset that presented only one option: move forward in faith and trust that out of bad can come good. Without knowing it I maintained a perspective that was focused on achieving the

Third Half Advisors: Bridging the Gap for Post-Career Professionals

A post-retirement consulting venture helps retiring boomers navigate through their “third half” in life. At last, retirement has finally arrived! So well deserved, it is the crowning achievement of a hard-working career, the off-ramp of a demanding, challenging profession. You’ve looked forward to this for so long, and now you can finally bask on that sunny Florida beach, sleep in, play golf, spend more time with the grandkids. No more fighting rush hour traffic, working late night hours, meeting deadlines, or crafting that perfect presentation, just lots and lots of R&R … maybe too much R&R. Living in the fast lane juggling responsibilities, goals, number crunching, project management, family, and then suddenly switching to a slower-paced lifestyle can be jarring to one’s physical and emotional wellbeing. Some may view this as being led out to pasture and envision themselves sitting among old folks nodding off in front of a television. It’s a scary thought for those who feel they still have so much to contribute and crave a sense of fulfillment like their successful careers once gave them. Retiring with

Harboring Hearts: Battling Heart Disease with Compassion

A way of healing turns into a safety net for thousands of families in their time of greatest need. A typical day, going about daily chores, taking that 20-minute walk, or going off to work, and then you get the call. Suddenly, everything grinds to a halt; a loved one has had a heart attack and is en route to a hospital. Adrenaline kicks in and off you go, making a few calls along the way to inform others and making sure a friend feeds your pet because you don’t know when you’ll be back home. Questions flood through your mind as you try to maintain composure. You arrive at the ER and eventually told of your loved one’s condition. Time passes, and finally, you can be with them. Just the sight of all the monitors, tubes, and IV is enough to scare you, but you must be strong and comforting for them and the rest of the family. What happens next? It is just the beginning. Hitting Home This scenario repeats itself multiple times a day in every community

Marian Hamilton and The Ken Hamilton Caregiver Center

A private sanctuary for caregivers eases the everyday stress associated with the care of ailing loved ones. Unsung Heroes Imagine having a break in your day, time so precious you can have a moment all to yourself to escape, relax, and recharge. This momentary freedom is appreciated beyond measure by family members whose lives have been dramatically altered to become the courageous caregivers of loved ones with serious illnesses or injuries. Caregivers give their all to support the physical and well-being needs of loved ones. Caregiving is more than a loving, noble, selfless act —it speaks of endurance when courage and strength seem exhausted. But usually, one dives into their newfound role and then realizes how inadequate they are to take on the responsibility. Their own lives become disrupted even to forgo paid work to accommodate the needs of the loved one. Exhaustion, stress, frustration, anxiety, isolation, and depression often creep into a caregiver’s life. Patience and fortitude become precious commodities to survive caregiving. Where does one turn for help? Roughly one third of family caregivers have difficulty in finding

Lisa Klein and Loved Twice: Starting Life with Compassion

A new mother finds room in her heart to help at-risk newborns. It’s another busy day at a San Francisco Bay Area warehouse filled with volunteers sorting through mountains of baby clothes. Another box filled to the brim is sealed, labeled “Baby Boy,” and placed on a stack of similar boxes ready for delivery. Among the piles of baby garments, Lisa Klein can be found examining each article and lovingly divvies them up by size 0 through 12 months. A Head Start in Life Klein is the founder of this non-profit enterprise, Loved Twice, that collects and distributes donated baby clothes to help underprivileged newborns, giving them a better start in life. They collect gently used baby clothes that would otherwise end up in a landfill and pack them lovingly into a boy’s or girl’s wardrobe-in-a-box. Each box contains 75 items including socks, hats, pants, sleepwear, booties, bibs, books, and other items. Deliveries are made to social workers who hand out the boxes to desperate new mothers and guardians in local hospitals, shelters, and clinics. It all started in 2005

Susan Nastasi: “Horsing Around” is Good for You

Sharing the unconditional love of miniature horses promotes peace, joy, comfort, and healing. Humans and animals have shared a bond since prehistoric times, one helping the other for mutual benefit. Our lives are enriched by an animal’s unconditional love and ability to sooth the wounds of our body and soul. A cuddle, a snuggle, a wagging tail acts like a balm for our emotional, psychological, and physical well-being. Just interacting with animals uplifts our spirit, and the feeling is mutual. What place better for this friendly bond to be experienced than at SOUL Haven Ranch in Winter Garden, Florida. It’s the perfect place to immerse in peace, tranquility, and nature, yet only a half-hour’s drive from mega-parks Disney World, Universal Studios, and Sea World. Guests are welcomed to a charming Victorian-style house with a wrap-around porch complete with rocking chairs. Upscale accommodations await the tired traveler as do friendly dogs, cats, and goats. Relax and unwind in the gazebo, hammocks, and swings beneath the large shady oak trees. There’s even a horse-drawn carriage service available for tours, weddings, birthdays, and