Making Fatherhood Count

Becoming a single parent isn’t in anyone’s life plan. It was no different for Justin Yoder. He was suddenly single with a young son to care for full-time. Little did he know the journey he and his son Jett had ahead of them.

Father’s Day: Always Stay Humble and Kind

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We are dedicating this song to all the dads out there who have taught us these valuable lessons and also to all the fathers we’ve had the privilege to feature in other Stiry stories.

These are incredible men, husbands, and role models for their children and grandchildren. Hats off to you this Father’s Day!

More Than A Mentor: Miss V

“My Goal is to empower students.”

Simple yet powerful.

After a difficult childhood in Mexico, then a tough transition to life in the United States, Veronica Bustillos knew it was her calling to mentor teenagers in need.

At Murray High School in Utah, she is changing the lives of at-risk youth by becoming their advocate and support system through her inspirational mentorship program.

Lone Peak Fire Department: Preparing the community before a School Shooting strikes

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When it comes to those we care about, we hope that tragedy never strikes. When it comes to the vulnerable, the feeling of wanting nothing to happen becomes stronger. When it comes to children in schools, the feeling is at its strongest. Although, with our best efforts, it is sometimes unavoidable.

We ask ourselves, what can be done? Who is helping to ensure the safety of the children in the community when these attacks do happen? We don’t like to think about what could happen, especially when talking about those that we care about but in times like today, it’s hard to ignore the thoughts of what if. Lone Peak Fire Department has risen to the call of their community and has taken notice of what needs to be done.

Providing Emergency Services and Onsite Trauma Kits

Lone Peak Fire Department is able to provide safety and emergency services with onsite trauma kits in every school classroom possible. They have seen a need and are working tirelessly to make sure that this void of the unknown when tragedy does strike, is filled. We may never be able to stop school shootings from occurring or tragedy in general, and being prepared for when it does happen can make all the difference. With trauma kits that Lone Peak Fire Department is providing to schools, this could quite possibly save a child’s life in a time of need. These kits are user-friendly and easily accessible, teachers and others in the classroom can provide the emergency services that are needed. Time is of the essence in emergency situations and with the Lone Peak Fire Department’s efforts, this gap of not receiving medical services in time can be closed.

Teaching Proper Emergency Medical Procedures

In addition to the trauma kits being provided to every classroom possible to schools in the community, Lone Peak Fire Department also ensures that those that are educators, parents, and many more are taught in proper emergency medical procedures. The class is important in not only providing more knowledge to those that are in this situation but also being able to unite those in the community.

Lone Peak Fire Department teaches everything from applying direct pressure to wounds to how to apply a dressing to open wounds. This emergency medical responder class being provided can not only give the reassurance that is necessary for a time of need but also makes sure that the safety of the children is being ultimately utilized.

   Although we question often with what can be done, we can now also recognize the efforts that are being propelled forward by organizations in the community such as Lone Peak Fire Department. When we send our children, nieces, nephews, grandchildren, and others that we care about school, we want to make sure they are safe. We want to make sure that if tragedy strikes, they will be able to have services provided to them that are necessary to ensure this safety. Lone Peak Fire Department wanted to do more for their community, and that is exactly what they accomplished by providing in-classroom emergency services with their onsite trauma kits.


SMART SMILES: Giving the gift of a smile

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“This family from Somalia had come. Their family had never seen a dentist. She was so excited to have an opportunity to get the help their child needs.”

Smart Smiles created a one of kind mobile dental unit to see children in schools who wouldn’t otherwise get to see a dentist. The result, brighter smiles for hundreds of kids.

“To be able to ease another persons burden, is really the most noble thing you can do.”

What are you doing today to ease another’s burdens?

RISING READERS: A Special Education Story

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After struggling with her own reading disability as a child, Mrs. Barton was inspired to become a special education teacher. At Ephraim Middle School she has helped hundreds of students rise to the occasion and overcome reading and learning challenges. Without the encouragement and help of teachers like Mrs. Barton, there are thousands of kids who would not graduate from high school each year.

MOM STRONG: A Mother’s Day Story

Two-time cancer survivor. Two-time adoptive mother. One strong mom. Criscell’s journey has never been easy, but being a mother is reward enough. “After six years of waiting for Alex…I’m finally a mom.”

Share this story with a mom in your life. And to all you moms out there, we love you and Happy Mother’s Day.

Produced with 5 For The Fight, an organization dedicated towards eradicating cancer through research. To get involved, go to 5forthefight.org

Get Out and Ride

“If they don’t have bikes, what are they doing? They’re in the house playing video games or doing screen time. Kids need to be outside.”

This non-profit is doing something about this problem. They are taking used donated bikes, fixing them up, and giving them to kids in the community who otherwise wouldn’t have a bike.

When You Get a Second Chance

“How do you make the most of this second opportunity that you’ve been given?”

On May 5th 2001, Nicole’s battle with cancer began. As she looks back on her journey, her advice is simple: “I’m not going to be the one that cures cancer, but I can tell my story. You absolutely have the ability to make a good life out of whatever you have.”

“5/5 is my day. That was the day I declared my fight against cancer.”

Join the fight against cancer at 5forthefight.org

Braced for Kindness

“I asked my mom, why did God make me have scoliosis? And she says, he knew that you could handle it.”

Rayleigh Bell is anything but a typical 8-year-old. Already in her young life, she has endured the pain of living with scoliosis and started a business to help other children suffering from the same disease.   

Receiving the Diagnosis

At just 2 years old, Rayleigh’s mom noticed a bulge on her back. She immediately became concerned and took her to the hospital for tests.

Rayleigh’s family was unfamiliar with scoliosis and uncertain what the treatment would be for their daughter. After numerous x-rays, a severe s-curve was found in the middle of her spine that goes 71 degrees to the right. It was devastating. What would Rayleigh’s future look like? Would she be in constant pain?

Rayleigh received her first back brace at 6-years-old. The doctors were unable to prepare them for what was ahead.

“People used to call me turtle shell… It really hurt my feelings because they don’t know how much pain I’m in. I can’t control if I have scoliosis or not.”

Rayleigh began feeling alone and isolated as her treatment progressed. She was no longer able to participate in dance and was missing school due to the pain.

Rayleigh’s stepfather noticed how she was struggling and decided to take action. He began working on a project that he hoped would bring her comfort and support. He created a stuffed bear with a scoliosis brace was made that looked exactly like Rayleighs. After getting the bear, Rayleigh turned to her mom and said: “Mom, now I have a friend just like me.”

Her stepfather’s thoughtful gift helped her feel understood. She took the bear with her everywhere.

The Braced Bear…Giving Back

“What if we gave away braced bears to kids who are dealing with what I’m dealing with so they have a friend and don’t have to do it alone.”

Through Rayleigh’s golden heart and amazing abilities as a young entrepreneur, The Braced Bear was formed. This organization is dedicated to providing children with scoliosis stuffed bears with a  scoliosis brace, just like Rayleighs. They started with 25 bears and visiting their local children’s hospital to deliver them. It was just the beginning and Rayleigh knew she needed to do more.

“My dream is to give bears in braces to every kid with scoliosis in the United States.”

Her mother’s company, CTI, stepped up to help fund The Brace Bear to accomplish their dream. Rayleigh doesn’t want to stop at anything until other children with scoliosis feel supported and understood.

At just 8 years old, this young entrepreneur has accomplished more than she could ever imagine. By selflessly creating her own organization, she is providing the comfort and confidence that children with scoliosis need.

For more uplifting stories like Rayleigh’s, click here.

Want to get involved? Go visit The Braced Bear charity for more information.

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