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Sick of Waiting for the Government, Kenyan Man Digs Rural Road by Hand

A 45-year-old man from rural Kenya is being hailed a hero by his community after single-handedly digging a one-mile road through a bushy area in oly six days, using only rudimentary tools.

The people of Kaganda, a small village 80km north of the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, had long been appealing to local government officials to start work on a short stretch of road that would shorten their daily trips to a nearby shopping center. Although the bushy area on which the road was supposed to be built had been earmarked by authorities, local leaders kept stalling the project. After a shorter footpath that Kaganda villagers used to get to the shopping center was fenced off because it passed through private property, the people were left with no option but to walk 4km every day. That’s when a local hero decided to take matters into his own hand and dig the much-awaited road himself, for free.

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The Brazilian Couple Who Brought a Dead Subtropical Rainforest Back to Life

Sebastião Ribeiro Salgado is a world renowned social documentary photographer and photojournalist from Brazil, but few people know that he is also the mastermind behind one of the most amazing environment restoration projects in history. Together with his wife, Salgado has nearly completed the recovery of a single uninterrupted section of the Atlantic Forest, planting millions of saplings over the last two decades.

The story of Instituto Terra, the non-profit organization founded by Sebastião Salgado and his wife, Lélia Deluiz Wanick Salgado, began in 1998. The celebrated photographer had recently returned from Rwanda, where he had documented the tragedies of war. The horrors he witnessed during those troubled wars haunted him long after he left Africa, and at one point he completely lost both his faith in humanity and the desire to shoot photos. It was around this time that Sebastião’s parents offered him and Lélia the old farm he had grown up in, and he took the opportunity to return home thinking that the idyllic paradise he remembered would help him heal. However, he found that his home was nothing like he remembered it.

Salgado grew up on a 1,750-acre farm in the state of Minas Gerais 70 miles inland from Brazil’s Atlantic coast. He recalls that, when he was only a boy, the Atlantic Forest covered half his family’s farm and half the Rio Doce Valley, and that the fauna that called it home created a cacophony of sounds every day. But that wasn’t the sight he came home to in the mid 90’s.

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Double Amputee Turns Barren Hills into Lush 17,000-Tree Forest

Ma Sanxiao, a 70-year-old double amputee and army veteran from Jingxing, North China’s Hebei province, has pent the last 19 years of his life planting thousands of trees and turning the once barren hills surrounding his village into a small forest.

Ma was diagnosed with blood poisoning in 1974, while serving in the Chinese Army. His condition got worse after he retired, and eventually had both legs amputated because of it – his right leg in 1985, and the left one in 2005. After seven major operations and constant medical treatments, he could barely afford to take care of his family, and ,because of his disability, finding a job proved very difficult. His veteran subsidy was enough to cover his medicine, but he couldn’t remain idle, so in 2000, after getting inspired by another tree-planting story on TV, the double-amputee started planting parasol trees in the barren hills around his remote village, with the intention of selling them for profit.

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12-Year-Old Boy Goes Viral for Doing His Homework Under a Streetlight Because Family Can’t Afford Electricity

CCTV footage showing a 12-year-old boy from the town of Moche, in Peru, doing his homework on the sidewalk, under a streetlight, because his family can’t afford electricity in their home, has been viewed millions of times on social media after being shared by local police.

Staff at the Moche police department first noticed Víctor Martín Angulo Córdoba late last month, while checking security cameras. They noticed a young boy sitting on the sidewalk by himself at night, which they thought was suspicious. It was only when they zoomed in that they realized he was actually reading and writing something in his notebook, taking advantage of the streetlight overhead. Touched by the boy’s dedication to his studies, the police department shared the CCTV video on their official Facebook account and it quickly went viral.

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Female Vigilante Group Has Been Defending This Indian Forest for 20 Years

A group of 75 female volunteers from India’s Odisha state has spent every day of the last 20 years patrolling a 75-hectare forest to protect it from woodcutters and timber smugglers.

In 1999, the eastern state of Odisha was ravaged by a supercyclone. People lost their homes, their crops and had to go without food or clothing for several days. But many in Gundalba, a small village in the Mahanadi delta of Puri district, realized that the only reason they were still alive was thanks to a forest and mangrove area that had shielded them from the brunt of the devastation. They knew they had to protect it at all costs, but with all the men busy rebuilding the village after the supercyclone, the task of watching over the forest fell to the women. They quickly formed a vigilante group and  have been taking turns patrolling the forested area in search of timber smugglers and woodcutters for the last 20 years.

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Meet Vaggelis Chatzis, the World’s Only One-Handed Professional Boxer

Vaggelis Chatzis’s life is considered by many the ultimate underdog story. After having his right forearm amputated from below the elbow when he was only a baby, he grew up to become the world’s only one-handed professional boxer.

Chatzis was born with a cancerous tumour in his right hand which would have ultimately killed him if doctors didn’t amputate part of his arm to stop the cells from spreading. He was only three months old at the time, so the young Greek has had to rely on his left hand alone for as long as he can remember. Growing up was tough, as the other kids would often bully him and make fun of his three-fingered prosthetic hand, calling him things like Captain Hook. That caused him to grow up into a very angry young man, and that anger got him in a lot of trouble. He started hanging out with the wrong crowd, spent his nights drinking and partying, and got into fights a lot. But then he discovered boxing and he fell in love.

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Indian “Tree Man” Planted Over 5 Million Trees to Cope with Tragedy

Vishweshwar Dutt Saklani took his last breath on January 18, 2019, but he will live on in the memory of his countrymen as the “Tree Man of Uttarakhan”, a dedicated conservationist who planted over 50 lakh (5 million) trees and turned his once barren homeland into a lush forest.

Saklani had been fond of trees all his life. He planted his first sapling when he was eight years old under his uncle’s guidance, and kept at it for the next seven decades of his life, until he lost his sight and succumbed to the hardships of old age. However, by that time, the once barren hills in and around his native village of Pujargaon had already become home to a lush forest. Vishweshwar Dutt Saklani’s love for trees is well known, as he often used to call them his children or his closest companions, but few know that the legendary conservationist planted millions of trees to cope with the tragedies in his life.

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Real-Life “50 First Dates” – Japanese Man Makes Amnesic Girlfriend Fall in Love with Him Every Day

Correction: A previous version of this article stated that the name of Maruyama’s boyfriend was Li Huayu, and that the girl still lost her memory every day, when in reality this only occurred only in the first two months after her accident.  

The touching love story between an amnesia sufferer whose memory was wiped clean every morning and the loyal boyfriend who makes her fall in love with him every day has touched the hearts of millions in Japan.

“50 First Dates”, a 2004 romantic comedy starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, tells the story of a young woman whose short term memory was affected by a car crash. Every morning, her memory resets to the day of the accident, but that doesn’t deter Sandler’s character from making their relationship work, even if it means making her fall in love with him every day. It’s one of the best romantic comedies of all times, in my opinion, but I never imagined that such a love story could exist in real life. Well, a Japanese couple reportedly lived their very own “50 First Dates” romance for to months.

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Teenage Girls Pretend to Be Boys for 4 Years to Keep Father’s Barbershop Afloat

Two teenage sisters in India were recently honored for their grit and determination after it was discovered that they disguised themselves as boys for four years in order to keep their father’s barbershop open after he became ill.

Jyoti Kumari, 18, and her 16-year-old sister, Neha, from Banwari Tola, in India’s Uttar Pradesh state, took over their father’s barbershop in 2014 after he suffered a severe paralytic attack that left him bedridden. The girls were only 13 and 11-years-old at the time, but the barbershop was the family’s only source of income, so they had to do something to put food on the table. At first, the barbershop was closed, but as the family savings evaporated, Jyoti and Neha reopened it and started running it themselves. But things didn’t go well at first, as some men were skeptical about having girls shave their beards and trim their mustaches, while others treated them badly. So they started disguising themselves as men.

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The Incredible Story of a 12-Year-Old Boy Who Founded His Own School

At just 12-years-old, Leonardo Nicanor Quinteros is still in secondary school, but he already runs his own free private school to help other children, and even some adults, with their studies.

Leonardo loves to study, but he also wants to transfer his passion for education to his peers. After seeing some of his colleagues struggling to keep up at school, and other children spending too much time playing on the streets and completely neglecting their studies, he decided to do something about it. Last year, he told his grandmother, Ramona, that he wanted to operate his own school and asked her to help him build it next to her house, in the Argentinian town of Las Piedritas, near San Juan. She obliged, and today’s Nico’s free private school caters to nearly 40 young students. The 12-year-old acts both as teacher and principal and is proud that his initiative has already made a big difference for many of the children attending there.

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Amazing Community Helps Donut Maker Sell Out Early Every Day So He Can Spend Time with His Sick Wife

An amazing community in Seal Beach, California, have been helping the owner of their local donut shop spend more time with his ailing wife by buying all of his products so he can close hours earlier than usual.

John and Stella Chhan have been running the modest Donut City donut shop on Pacific Coast Highway for almost three decades, but a few weeks ago some of their regular customers noticed that part of the duo was missing. John was still boxing and bagging donuts behind the counter, but Stella was nowhere to be found. She had suffered a debilitating aneurysm at the end of September which had left her unable to communicate or move for several weeks. Even though she had started to speak again, the woman was still recovering in a rehabilitation facility, and John went to be with her every day after selling out. But their local community decided to help them spend more time together.

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6-Year-Old Girl Takes Care of Disabled Father After Her Mom Abandons Them

A 6-year-old girl from China’s Ningxia autonomous region managed to melt the hearts of millions with her dedication to her disabled father who she has been taking care of ever since her mother left them.

Tian Haicheng, a 38-year-old man from Haiyuan County, in Ningxia, had his entire world turned upside down four years ago, when he was involved in a serious car accident. He lost his ability to walk, and was left with use of arms, which made him unable to work and support his family. His wife took their son and abandoned him and their 6-year-old daughter. But instead of Tian having to somehow take care of his girl, she was the one who took up most of the responsibilities, including cooking, cleaning, and making sure that Tian was well taken care of.

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Woman Donates Kidney to a Total Stranger After Finding His Ad Online

A 30-year-old woman from California is being hailed as a hero for saving a stranger’s life by donating one of her kidneys to him.

At the start of 2018, Jessica Morris, a 30-year-old dental technician from Orange County, California, set a very special new year resolution – to save someone’s life. A two-hour drive away, in San Francisco, freelance writer David Nachere, also 30, had almost given up hope of finding a kidney donor after suffering from end-stage kidney failure for six and a half years, and was coming to terms with the idea of dying. But he decided to give it one more shot and posted an ad for a kidney on Craiglist. Luckily for him, Jessica was looking for a way to fulfill the promise she had made to herself and contacted him.

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69-Year-Old Double Amputee Conquers Everest 40 Years After Losing Both Feet to Frostbite

69-year-old Xia Boyu recently became the oldest double amputee to conquer Mount Everest. That alone is an amazing achievement, but even more impressive is the fact that he did it on his fifth attempt, the first of which had caused him the loss of both his feet as a result of severe frostbite.

Xia Boyu’s first tried to reach the top of Mount Everest in 1975, as part of an expedition backed by the Chinese Government. With only 250 meters to go from reaching the summit, the team was pinned down by bad weather which didn’t let up for two days and three nights. The long wait took its toll on the climbers, and to make sure that everyone made it back alive, the team decided to turn back and fulfil their dream another time. During the descent, Xia gave his sleeping bag to one of his colleagues who was in a worse shape than him. Unfortunately, this selfless act would cause him to lose both his feet to frostbite.

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Monkeys’ Father – The Man Who Dedicated His Life to Wild Macaques in Tibet

When 69-year-old Dobrgyal started looking after the wild macaques at at scenic spot in China’s Tibet Autonomous Region, their population numbered only 40-50 specimens. Today, 18 years later, that same place is home to over 2,800 Tibetan macaques.

Dobrgyal’s relationship with the Tibetan macaques in Gongbo’gyamda County has been described as a heartwarming love story between man and monkey, and he has come to be known as the Monkeys’ Father. A former forest keeper in the area, the 69-year-old man has been driving 5 km almost every day just to feed the macaques at a popular tourist spot, but also show them affection and make sure they are healthy. On occasions, he has even taken some of the animals home with him and nursed them back to health.

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