Tag Archives: Children’s Inn

What One Person Can Do

Amid the cloud of corruption and treasonous conduct of the President of the United States and his family that engulfs the nation on a daily basis, we sometimes hear a story of someone doing amazing good things for others. Not for personal gain or publicity. Out of the limelight. Just because it’s the right thing to do.

I learned recently that I know such a person. Let’s call her Roxanne Yamashita. Because that’s her actual name and she should be recognized. I met Roxanne through Halau Ho’omau I ka Wai Ola O Hawai’i, a Hawaiian cultural and hula dance group in which my wife participated when we lived in Virginia. Roxanne’s daughter, Lana, also was part of the halau from a very early age.

Roxanne, like me, photographed the halau dances and other activities. Over time I noticed that her photos of the young children in particular showed great awareness of how to photograph them at play as they worked on projects and even danced the hula. As time passed, her photos of the keikis, as the small children are known, got better and better.

So, it should not have been a surprise that Roxanne would do something extremely generous for others, with particular emphasis on children. Still, what she has done is, I think, extraordinary.

If you go to www.smallthingsmatter.org, you will see the results of her work. Among the beneficiaries are children being helped by the Children’s Inn at the National Institutes of Health and the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC. The output includes “stuffies” made with fleece or other fabric that can be personalized and accessorized, as well as small pillows.  The site also says “Small Things Matter performs and encourages others to perform Random Acts of Kindness.  Some of our RAKS included leaving abandoned art to be found, lucky penny drops and bracelets drops.”

Typically, the photos on the site are all of Roxanne’s daughter, Lana, who is a full participant in the work and learning the true meaning of generous spirit from her mother. The site has a 401(c)(3) charitable determination from the IRS, so contributions are tax-deductible.

Small things can indeed make a big difference in the well-being of a child. Roxanne and Lana are working hard to do the right thing by helping others who may need a little lift. I am sure there are many others doing similar things around the country, but I only know Roxanne and am glad I do. If you have some spare coin, Small Things Matter is a worthy place to donate.