Big, brave medicine and powerful little acts : 'they go the extra step and that's huge'

Just after seven each morning I get an email from Daily Good. Each begins with a quote, shares a story and ends with a thought on our little acts. Recently it seems there has been an uptick in articles relating to health care challenges, here are the last three from the past week.

Twelve people at multiple medical centres in several different cities swap organs in a domino donor transplant never before attempted on this scale so that five people can receive compatible transplants and a chance at life.

From a 9 year old's school assignment titled 'If I Had Three Wishes' comes Tyler's Totes: "The Smiths didn't have any grand plans, just Tanner's guiding principle: to make kids with cancer laugh. Kathy contacted a sorority sister who worked in an Atlanta-area hospital for advice. She learned that little kids received plenty of support from outside groups, but preteens and teenagers were sort of the forgotten demographic. Buoyed by the idea of helping kids the same age as Tanner, the family decided to gather things to brighten hospital rooms, and toys that would fill an otherwise lonely day. The Smiths put everything in tote bags so kids could carry their wares from treatment to treatment."

And this morning the power of little acts of kindness, an ironworkers tribute that has kids and parents at Dana Farber smiling as they look over at the beams of the Yawkey Centre:
"It has become a beloved ritual at Dana-Farber's Cancer Institute, where they are building a new facility. Every day, children who come to the clinic write their names on sheets of paper and tape them to the windows of the walkway for ironworkers to see. And, every day, the ironworkers paint the names onto I-beams and hoist them into place as they add floors to the new 14-story Yawkey Center for Cancer Care. "It's fabulous," said 18-month-old Kristen Hoenshell's mother, Elizabeth, as she held her daughter and marveled at the rainbow of names. "It's just a simple little act that means so much....They don't have to do this, the guys. They could just do their job and do a good job at it and give us a building that we can get treatment at, but they go the extra step and that's huge."

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