Fostercare – Where “One Small Thing” – Really Does Make A Difference!

It has been crazy & busy around here…preschool graduations, middle school move-up, retirement homes for mom…its so easy to lose sight of the small things….that make the big things!  Thanks to the Kisamore family I am back on track:)

Last night someone retweeted one of my tweets which led me to find out who they were and what they were about….thanks Ann Evanston and her Social Network Coaching Club for showing me how important making the connection is, and the right way to go about it!  And, I am so glad I did:)  It brought that warm fuzzy feeling…it was a wonderful reminder that I am not alone in believing its the small things…..knowing first hand they do make a difference.  What your momma told you was right, every little bit helps!

So, I tweeted back, we connected, and I checked out the website.  I was so taken by this family who were inspired by Jimmy Wayne – a former foster child- who walked across country to bring awareness to his project Meet Me Half Way – for foster kids aging out of the system.  After seeing his concert they decided, kids and all, that they could do “One Small Thing”….and they have!  They are recycling bicycles to give to kids in care and/or to sell at the store to raise money for the Nazareths Children’s Home.  I was all smiles…as I am sure the kids receiving these bikes are too!  Really great things are happening here!!!  I read their blog, and it says they are just starting and don’t know what to say, and I hope they keep at it….because these are the good things people love to hear about….and people can learn and get ideas from them as well. 

A little while later another tweet came from them….and reading the story it pointed me to brought it all home for me…..The Starfish Story.  I hope you take a minute to read it if you haven’t already seen it.  It’s heartwarming and inspiring…hope you enjoy it!  It will change the way you see the world (and the beach), and how YOU can make a difference….one small thing…at a time! 

I will leave you with this quote…..
“There’s so much one person can do, and so many ways they can help make a difference.  It just takes one person to help someone to a better life.”  – Jimmy Wayne –

Remember, its the small things that are the big things….we can ALL do one small thing!


Have you ever felt like what you are doing is small and insignificant (in the big picture)?  Are you doing one small thing to make the world a better place?  Do your kids get involved?

About Rita Brennan Freay

The journey of a 1000 miles always ends with a dirty diaper. Headmaster of a self inflicted international preschool & visitor center compassionately changing kids lives, one diaper at a time.
This entry was posted in fostercare, rita's rants and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

42 Responses to Fostercare – Where “One Small Thing” – Really Does Make A Difference!

  1. pia says:

    Hi Rita–I think this is my new favorite “mommy blog” because it’s so much more. Little things do make huge differences. I’m actually trying to make adult’s lives better now, and that impacts on kids–long story that can be read at Psychology Today. The blog I put in website is my personal blog and how I met Leila Radan one of my favorite people in the world

    I loved your post on how you decided to adopt. I know, personally, how incredible adoption is

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      aww, thanks Pia you made my day!! It means a lot:) I’m going to check out what your doing over at Psychcology Today…..sounds interesting! I’m curious about Leila now too:) Thanks for stopping by….glad you like it!

  2. Ola says:

    great post and awesome story I like it sooo much…

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Thanks Ola:) I know from talking to you that you have done “one small thing”…and continue to do so…changing lives! You are a Starfish thrower:) Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I wrote a blog post about the Power of One recently too (after joining Bono’s ONE campaign). I so believe in the one message and definitely encourage my kids to do so too (Molly’s in Key Club which is Junior Kiwanis and Alice will join next year too. Most of my volunteering has been very local to date but I too have followed Darcie’s lead and contacted CASA – I can’t read about these kids any more without doing something. You are a powerful advocate Rita!
    Louise Edington
    Fearless For Freedom

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Yay! How awesome Louise! Tell Casa I sent you;) They will be happy & lucky to have you! btw, I love Bono and didn’t know about the ONE campaign…I will be looking into that…thanks! I am a believer too…ONE person can do ONE small thing. Love what you are teaching your girls:) Start them young…shows them it matters, they have a voice, can take action, and make a difference….powerful stuff! Thanks for sharing, supporting, and stopping by!

  4. When money was tight I always felt like what can I do to give back…I’m not doing anything because I can’t. Then I realized that there is a lot I could do to help someone in need. It could be as simple as donating some clothes, books, toys, etc. There was a way and there is always a way.

    I don’t have kids right now, but I know when I do I will definitely get them involved in giving back. I think it’s important for them to experience it and to know the different types of lives people live. I want them to know the importance of being a GIVER and not just a receiver.

    Great post!

    With much heart,
    Alara K. Castell
    Your Sassy Spiritual Guide

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Yes, teaching kids about giving back is really important (to me)! It makes the world a better place, and they learn about compassion. Like you said, it doesn’t have to be big stuff or money, time is needed in many instances….and is just as important to the big picture! True joy is in giving…not receiving:) Thanks for sharing.

  5. Fiona Stolze says:

    Rita, the Starfish story is lovely. And so to the point. Every little thing really does make a difference. Every tiny little thing. In fact, there’s nothing that’s so small that it can’t make a difference. And it’s always amazing how far our reach is…we can never know who our actions are touching or how they are touching them. But I think it’s important to just know that it is indeed happening and to just keep on going. I love your passion for this subject. Thanks for sharing this story.

    Fiona Stolze

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Thanks Fiona:) I can’t get the Starfish story out of my head!!!! When the guys said “it matters to that one”….it really hits home how EVERYTHING we do matters… someone! As you said, every little thing….its just sad so many people feel they do have what it takes, or won’t make a big enough impact or difference…so they don’t act…when they could be helping someone:(

  6. Great post Rita! Yes, the power of ONE! Love it :-) There have been times I felt powerless (thinking of political change or world hunger) and then I would remind myself to focus on what I could do…and to take that next step. Thank you for sharing – I love your purpose and your passion!

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Its funny, there are plenty of times I feel powerless….BUT, as you said, I look in a different direction and take action where I can…hopefully making a difference…with the power of ONE! Love that…..I think I will use that on my kids just that way…so they know they have the power of ONE:) Thanks!

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  7. Many times people feel they are not smart enough or educated enough to make a difference and be of value to themselves and the world. None of this is true because everyone can make a difference. I believe that we all can contribute to the world with our uniqueness and deserve to be loved and appreciated for who we are. And this starts by being able to know ourselves, be ourselves and love ourselves.

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      I agree Rachel, wish I could change that for people!!! I wan’t everybody to know that they have the power to make a difference….however small…it matters…..and can be life changing to someone! Thanks for stopping by:)

  8. Donna McCord says:

    Rita, you are such an inspiration and a wonderful example to everyone who knows you and sees what you are doing to make a difference in the lives of so many precious children. I love being able to realize that we don’t have to do something earth shattering or big in order to make a difference, and the Starfish story is a beautiful and compelling illustration of how each person is special. Helping even just one other person is huge and we may never know the ripple effect that one small act will have. This reminds me to never hesitate or hold back when an opportunity arises to reach out to someone who is in need, even if it is the smallest act of a warm smile or an encouragement. Thank you for all you do and how you are arousing so many others to follow your lead and change our world for the better.

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Thank you Donna! Its exactly as you say, I want people to know if the opportunity arises, no matter how small it may seem, its worth doing!!! If I can inspire one more person to do one small thing….I’ve succeeded:) Thanks for your support….and all you do to make the world a better place!

  9. Pat Zahn says:

    one small thing…I like it. The world can seem overwhelming when you look at all the problems, but if you decide to make a difference in one small area you can save that one starfish! I strive to exercise a kindness each and every day. It’s the gift that gives right back to you ten-fold.

    • Amos says:

      I wanted these to work in the worst way. I tried this prargom because of the awesome prices. Brennan’s voice isn’t the problem I believe with me anyway that I need to get to the point . I bought several of the MP3s that I need help in & listened to them but they all start out the same explaining what self hypnosis is & what it’s suposed to do then towards the end just briefly touches the area you are dealing with. This happens on every MP3. Listen I know why I bought the self hypnosis you don’t have to keep explaining it time & time again at the beginning of the sessions & then leave only a few minutes for the help that’s needed. These lessons made me more annoyed than relaxed to have the lessons sink in to my mind set. Upon listening my mind was like get to the point of the session already . Voice was great, prices are awesome, has money back guarantee, lessons were less than helpful.

  10. Hi Rita,
    Thanks for another heartwarming reminder that everything counts — some things more than others — and that even the smallest gestures can have an enormous influence. On the other hand, your voice on behalf of foster children is strong, inspiring, and travels far and wide. Keep it up!

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Aww, shucks, thanks Robbie:) I have been told I have a big mouth sometimes…so I like your description much better…lol! In all seriousness, you are right, the smallest gestures can have enormous influence…and we may not ever know its impact. I appreciate your kind words and your heping me to encourage others to do one small thing!

  11. Hi Rita – I love the Starfish story. Thank you for sharing! I try, often, to give back where I can and to use our business to help better our community. It’s a priveledge!

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      And, you do wonderful life changing things too!!! You and Fresh Brothers are doing more than one small thing!!! Keep it up woman…and thanks for all you do:) The kids are counting on us!

  12. I love the starfish story. It’s very poignant. And it says so much in so many ways. I love that twitter connected you to this amazing family. I hope you shared some of what you have learned from SNCC! And also your story about how you didn’t think you had anything to write about or to share and look at you now! You are making an amazing difference in the world of foster care and for these children Rita. You are a star and you inspire me. And I love you even though I haven’t even met you in person. One day though we will meet in person and it will be like old friends, won’t it!

    Susan Berland
    A Picture’s Worth

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Ah, yes Susan:) One day we will meet…and it will be like lifelong friends…can’t wait! I hope I can help the Kisamore family spread the word… others know all it takes is one small thing….to change the world….forever! Thank you for your support and for all you are doing to make the world an equally better place for ALL families! xx

  13. Wonderful story and reminder – it’s easy to get discouraged, think problems are overwhelming and hopeless. You help us reconnect with hope and action–what could be better? I think the idea of foster kids aging out at 18 and being so alone in the world is horribly painful. In the past we have given to some organizations that help, and your post is making me want to do that again.

    You are a beautiful voice for children, Rita!

    Judy Stone-Goldman
    The Reflective Writer
    “My cat owns me, my clutter stymies me, my writing frees me. Word maven loves—and learns from—ordinary life.”

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Awesome, happy to hear it Judy! Getting discouraged comes easily these days…but the message this family is sending speaks volumes…and will help us all see that in one small gesture you can change a life…forever! Thanks Judy:)

  14. We are in the process of adopting a 13 year old boy who is right on the cusp of aging out of the system in his country. Everyone keeps telling me what an amazing thing I’m doing by bringing this boy into our family, but what most people don’t know is that really, the blessing is being given TO me. When you meet a child that has been ‘discarded’ and invite them in, they give you the most amazing gift that can be given–the gift of knowing that you’ve made a difference. Every day you have a privilege of waking up and seeing what your investment is producing. Every day you have the honor of knowing that your time is well spent and that generations to come will be changed because of this choice. Every day you wake up with a purpose. I can think of no better way to live. And none of this would have been possible, if it weren’t for the gift my soon-to-be adopted son has given me by agreeing to come into our lives and our home. If you want to know more about our journey, check out my blog:

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      I know first hand Stephanie what a gift it is…and I think until someone has been there you can’t truly understand it fully! You are doing wonderful things…and changing a life forever!!! Thank you:) I look forward to connecting and following your journey! Good luck…and enjoy the ride of a lifetime!

  15. Molly Perry says:

    You are so right that a small gesture can be huge! I know that we will probably never really know the impact we’ve had through our small gestures until much later in life or after we are gone. However, it goes back to the reason we do nice things–so others will notice or because it is the “right thing” to do???

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Hehehe, not sure which comes first….BUT the gesture itself is what matters! Small in kind random acts of kindness or planned activities, they all have an impact and can be life changing for a child (or anybody!). These are the values I try to instill in my children. It is NOT about you, or what you can get out of it…its about the other person….and how you can help them however small it may seem to appear to you, it may be HUGE to them!

      • Dya says:

        Years ago I underwent an esixcon of a painful reddened sabaceous(?) cyst in a local hospital, under anesthesia. My first post surgical visit, two weeks later, the surgeon saw the thick yellow puss oozing from thewound site. I had called him about aweekafter surgery to tell him about the oozing and was told just to change the dressing and Rx ointment more frequently un til my scheduled visit. Even after seeing the situation, the doctor stated there was no problem. My daughter, a nurse in another state saw this and drove me to Msssachuseets General Hospital, where she made an appointment for a surgeon she knew after my first phone call to her. The doctor there debrided the wound and was rather displeased with treatment I received, and that the condition was taken care of .

  16. My daughter’s speech therapist has that story posted in the lobby of her clinic – beautiful and so true! As the world spins and people go about their merry way, I often wonder how many people truly realize that it takes only one small gesture to make a huge difference in the life of a child in need – or an adult. Giving a homeless person a hot cup of coffee or donating a tricycle – it all has the same meaning – and importance to the recipient. Lovely story and I am so glad you connected on Twitter with Jimmy Wayne.

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Not sure people realize it much at all…..sad actually, because they are missing out on doing good and feeling good about it….a lesson all kids need to be taught! As you said one small gesture which may take less than a minute could make a huge difference to a person….and just change their day, perspective, or their outlook on life!

  17. Darcie Newton says:

    Great post…and you are right, one person can do so much. I wandered down the rabbit hole you opened and found out about CASAs…found the organization in SF and will be attending an information meeting in July.

    Thanks for being the catalyst to me finding a way to make a difference for a child in foster care.


  18. Great post and great stories Rita. I think that it is so important to remember that we don’t need to do anything earth shattering to touch the life of a child and make a difference that can last a lifetime.

    • Rita Brennan Freay says:

      Thank so much Sunday:) I think people feel like they can’t do “enough” to make a difference and that leads to – oh why do it at all…this family is a prime example of how “one small thing” can change a childs world (or hundreds more!)… you said…forever!

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