Genesee Academy Blueberry Ambassadors spark positivity in their community

Genesee Academy, coordinator Hana Sankari

Eman Khan
One day at school, my friends and I went to our class. The teacher didn’t seem to be happy with the class, so I felt bad. After class, my friends and I made a card for her and she really loved seeing that we cared.

Another Blueberry Moment was when I was walking down the hallway and noticed a teacher sitting on the floor. She was cleaning it because someone dropped their water bottle. I asked her if she needed help, and she smiled. She told me not to worry and that she had it covered.

Lastly, when I went to the food bank with my friends, we worked very hard to pack all the food. As I packed them, I felt good that these would be going to people that need them. I imagined how they would feel when they got their food.

Rewa Tarakji
The first person I helped, or I was kind to was a girl in my class. It was her birthday and no one else had said happy birthday to her yet. I had told her happy birthday and the look on her face was unforgettable! She had a smile on her face from ear to ear. This made me feel so happy, and I just felt amazing!

The second person I helped was another girl in my class, she was having a rough day and she was very tired. She was working tirelessly, she had much to do and she was away for a week! I helped her by first smiling at her, then by helping her to catch up. She was very grateful and the feeling inside of me when she said thanks and when she smiled was so beautiful.

The third person I helped was a different girl in my class. She was feeling a little tired towards the end of the day, and her stomach was really hurting her. I helped her carry her supplies and I also kept checking up on her. She left for home before I could check up on her one more time. That night I was looking at my texts from my mother’s phone, and I had gotten a really nice and long message. The message was beautiful, she was making me feel awesome! She told me many things and the thing that made me happiest of all was the feeling inside of me! She had left a heartwarming note just because I was being a good friend.

Noor Aftab
A couple weeks ago I was walking into school late and there were two or three kids coming inside right behind me, so even though I was in a rush I remembered that good people never miss a chance to do something nice so I held the door for them. They said thanks and walked in. As I was about to rush in, I spotted another kid running super fast to get into school on time. I saw she was carrying books and a backpack which would probably make it hard for her to open the door herself. I was also in a hurry and could have easily left the door and walked into the school, but it looked like she was already not having the best day, getting to school late and all, so I thought I would make her day better by holding the door for her. As she passed me, she smiled and said thank you. This filled my heart with happiness knowing that I did a great thing. Up until this very moment I have never regretted walking into school late that day!

One day I decided I wanted to do a good deed. I told my mom and she suggested we go to the elderly care place close by called Willowbrook Manor. We didn’t want to go empty handed though, so we called them and asked what things the elders there would enjoy. We ended up buying many different things including snacks and little gifts and putting them into goody bags. My sister and I really enjoyed that part! Once we got there the workers directed us to the community room where they brought the elders too. As they entered, we handed out the goody bags. The smiles on their faces made me feel so special. We even took pictures with a couple of them. While they emptied and enjoyed their goody bags, I talked with a few of them and found they really like talking about their past. I really enjoy stories, so I enjoyed this part too. It was a wonderful experience and I would love to do it again!

One time I was on vacation and went to this mini waterpark with my family. I was having a great time and decided to go on the slide. I was super exited because I hadn’t been on it yet and it looked so cool! I climbed up the stairs really fast and noticed a girl behind me running up the stairs as well. I had just reached the top and so had the other girl. I hesitated for a moment but then let her go first. She resisted and said that it’s okay and I should go first but I insisted. Finally, she went down first, but before she went down, she said, “You’re cool!” Those little words meant a lot to me. I was super happy that she appreciated my little but nice action. After we had both slid down, we started hanging out and became friends!

Obai Abdulhay
I saw my neighbor planting winter plants, and I saw that he was having a tough time handling the supplies, and due to his old age, it seemed really hard for him to do most of the physical aspects of it, after seeing this I wore my jacket and went outside to help him. When I got there, I asked him, “Sir, do you need help while planting your plants?” He responded very grateful and replied, “Yes Please! Thank you so much!” I spent around the next hour and a half helping him put the plants in, and I even helped him take care of the rest of the supplies, and I gave him the Blueberry Card afterwards. The next day, I went to talk to him, and he said that he gave the card away after holding the door for an elderly man and his son at the grocery store!

After the Islam World Wide Event about Palestine, I went and prayed, and then I went back to the gym to see if I could help with anything and I saw two of the organizers there struggling with putting all of the chairs and tables back, so both me and my friend went and help. While we were helping, there were kids playing on the side we already cleared out and that made me kind of frustrated, but since we were almost done, I decided that I would just finish the job, then go home and rest. After we finished the job we both went to give out one of our Blueberry Cards, while I gave one to one organizer, my friend gave his card to the other organizer, and both of them were pleased that we came and helped them, and that we didn’t play like the other kids on the other half of the gym.

One day back in December, My Father and I both went to Tim Horton’s, and while we were leaving I saw a lady holding a sign saying “I need Food or Money Please help!” my heart ached as I saw this and by looking at the lady’s face it really looked like she could faint, or starve to death at any moment and it looked like she was in despair, pain, and agony, so I told my father “Baba! Can I give her my Donut, and my Bagel!” My father replied by saying “We can, but are you sure?” I nodded my head, and my father stopped, and I gave her my Donut and Bagel, the gratitude in her face looked like she has been saved, and I felt the sincerity in her saying, “Thank you so Much!” After this I had much more of a positive mood, and I felt very good about myself for the next couple of days.

Ibrahim Ahmed
One day in December, I saw that my friend was really down because he forgot to do a summative project. All day he was just really sad and was sulking around. So, at lunch, I started cracking a few jokes to cheer him up. Isn’t it ironic how you become happy when you succeed at making someone else happy? Seeing my friend smile made me smile because there’s nothing better than the feeling of making your friend smile. It is a feeling that will never dim no matter how many times you do it.

In November, we had an event at my local mosque. After the event, there was a lot of cleaning that had to be done. Only one adult from the community was cleaning while everyone else was talking. He looked tired and stressed because it was late at night and there was a lot to do and little time to do it. My friend Obai and I decided we should help him just to make his life a little easier. He was so grateful and immediately his stressed frown twisted into a smile which, in turn, made me and Obai smile. It wasn’t like the feeling you get when you normally help people. This feeling was special. I don’t know if it’s because of the fact that we both knew the adult well or some other reason, but it just felt much better than it usually does.

Hunger is the thing that makes people the saddest, especially for school children. We go through our classes from 8:30 to 12:20 just thinking about food. But if we don’t have food then that can turn our happiest day into our saddest. That is exactly what happened to my friend in January. He was happy all day but when we went to lunch, he realized that he forgot his lunch box at home. For the first ten minutes of lunch, he just sat there looking at everyone, else eat their lunch. He looked so sad that I figured that I have enough in my lunch box for two. As soon as I offered to share my lunch with him, his mood noticeably brightened. He started cracking jokes to make me laugh. I guess what goes around comes around. But that after that day I realized that if what goes around is kindness and compassion then that comes around. And here I thought that it was only for bad things.

Omar Hashish
I gave my first card to my brother because he is super helpful to me and super nice. So, if anyone helps hum, that other guy gets a card. And how I helped my brother is that I sometimes help him with homework.

The second card is my nice friend because he is nice and friendly, so I’ll keep trying to help him. And how I helped my friend is that I sometimes give him advice on what to do.

The third card who I gave it to is my other nicest friend because he is nice and friendly and respectful so ill help him too. And how I helped my friend is that I help him for reading and memorizing Quran.

Mariam Nounou
I gave all my cards to someone. Giving those three cards was joy to my heart. Being nice is one of the best things to do to my community. What if it does come back to me? Kindness should be a chain. It should always keep on going on and on for everyone around us. Doesn’t matter if that person is mean to you or is rude to you. You should always do nice things for everyone.  The person I gave the card to was for saying that they would do amazing things in life. I believed in that person and I knew that person is capable in anything if she just puts her heart and soul into it. 

The second one was for my favorite teacher. She deserves so much respect and love and I think she deserved to have a great fresh start in every morning. I hug her and say a nice thing to bring her up. I don’t do it for the cards, I do it because it is one of the best things to do in your life. I might not have a million cards, but everyone should realize that you don’t do this for cards or for the prize at the end, you do if for how you are getting rewarded by god. 

My third card was to my mom. She deserves the world. She is so kind and respectful and she helped me become…. me. She deserved to have a day with me as mom. See what is was like. Not easy . . . but moms are so loving, they do it all for you. I wanted to help her with all her work, and it felt amazing.

Ibrahim Toure
I just got finished praying fajr at the masjid and I found out that an old man had lost his cane. When I saw him come into the masjid, he had it. So, I looked into the shoe room and I found it. I went to him with a smile and he smiled back. I gave him his cane and he gave me a hug. I felt happiness in my heart.

My cousin Hamza was sleeping over at my house and he was sleeping on my bed it was like 2:00am. We went to sleep and then the next morning I woke up brushed my teeth and took a shower. Then I was going to tell my cousin Hamza to go brush his teeth and take a shower until he said that his foot was stuck. So quickly he started pulling his foot. Then I started to think. I told him to turn his foot then pull. We did exactly that then his foot came out we both were happy that we did it.

So, I was at the library and a lot of people were not there, so I pretty much had the whole place to myself. Books were every on the table. I was getting ready to go until I saw the librarian cleaning up the books on the table. So, I went to go help her. Sure, it was like 30 minutes, but it was worth it. The librarian gave me a nice smile, so I smiled back. From that day on, I helped the librarian at the library every time I went there.   

Leena Almansour
My first Blueberry Moment was at school and it happened on my way to class. I was standing next to my friend while walking on our way to class and I looked at her and told her that I loved the way that she cared for me as family and that she is always there for me. She felt so amazing after I told her and my friend smiled, thanked me and then we hugged. I gave her the card, and since she is one of a Blueberry Ambassadors, she knew exactly what to do. She has to pass it to others she does good to. I felt so great giving out that card because it made me realize saying good words to others can really make their day.

My second Blueberry Moment happened at school in my Technology class. I was about ready to leave the Technology Room because it was the end of the class. On my way out I thanked my teacher for an amazing class that day. He is an amazing Technology teacher and during his classes we work on graphic organizers, projects, and more! I handed him the card and he asked me what he should do with this card. I explained that this card is a Blueberry Card and that you need to pass it on to others when you do good to them. It felt very good telling him that he is such a great Technology teacher and he felt great as well. 

My final Blueberry Moment also happened during school. It was during a class and that class I had to go home early. I was getting ready to pack up my supplies, and I told one of my friend’s goodbye, that I was going to miss her because I knew I wasn’t able to go to school the next day. We hugged and she also said she was going to miss me as well. It felt so nice knowing that I will always be there for her, and she will always be there for me. I handed her the Blueberry Card and she was also a Blueberry Ambassador, so she knew what to do with the card. 

Dan Margni
My first Blueberry Moment was during the summer. I was eating at a table right outside of Shake Shack in Baltimore, Maryland. My best friend and I realized that there was a couple who were begging for money and digging out of a trash can looking for food. My friend decided to give them money, but I felt it would be better to get them a meal. So, I went ahead and ordered them a meal that they could both share along with drinks. When I gave it to them, they were really happy and the smiles that appeared on their faces made my day and it made me feel like the sun was shining really bright when it was actually a gloomy day. 

My second Blueberry Moment was when one of my friends asked for help on their math homework on a group chat. No one had answered them for a while, so when I saw it, I decided to help them. I helped them by guiding them through the steps and letting them try to solve it on their own. After helping them with a couple of problems, they started to get the hang of it. At the end of it, they seemed to have understood it. And it made me feel really good that I had been able to positively affect someone’s grades and understanding. For the rest of that day, I was in a good mood.

My third Blueberry Moment was at my best friend’s birthday party. She had invited one of her friends that only she knew. So that guest didn’t know anybody else there and probably felt shy and out of place because all of us knew each other. So, I made sure that she was there when we were dancing and laughing. And then, she felt a bit more comfortable with us. Not only did she feel more in place, but I felt great because I had made a new friend. 

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