Archive for July, 2013

July is “National Make a Difference to Children Month”

Friday, July 19th, 2013


For National Make a Difference to Children Month, I ask you to remember my story, then go out there and pay it forward to help other children who could use your help.

Growing up, people didn’t believe in me and people didn’t want to give me a chance because I was different. I had Tourette Syndrome. What they didn’t know, was their actions gave me the fuel to overcome my disability and go on to become an award winning elementary school teacher and make a difference in the life of children across the United States.

Every time someone said, “Brad can’t do it,” I proved them wrong!

Here are eight ideas that helped me find success and they can help you make a difference in the life of a child near you.

1) The Power of One: Be that ONE person who makes a difference in the life of a child. When everyone else turns away and says “I can’t help that kid,” step up and prove them all wrong and support that child when nobody else will.
2) Keep that Positive Attitude: Show that child that even during the toughest times, keep your head up and look for the positive side of the situation.
3) Show You Care: Put your Ipads down and turn off your cell phones. Listen to what the child is saying and encourage them to be the best they can be.
4) Embrace their Passion: Help that child emerce themselves in whatever they love to do most. Enjoy the moment.
5) Help them Follow their Dreams: Learn what they love to do and help guide them towards success. Don’t allow anyone to take away a child’s dream. That dream may give them hope in life.
6) Focus on their Strengths, not their Weaknesses: Yes, some children have bigger weaknesses than others, but there is no need to remind children of this. Step up and look at the positive things the child is able to do.
7) Show Perseverance: Explain to children not to make excuses because one excuse will lead to the next. Model for them a “never-give-up” attitude. Show them they can do it.
8) Celebrate: When all else fails, celebrate like there’s no tomorrow. It doesn’t matter how big or small the celebration may be, just enjoy life and all the great things the child has to offer.


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"Brad Cohen is a walking billboard for the idea of living positively. He is like a cold drink on a hot day--refreshing, energizing, and likely to put a smile on your face."
Tim Shriver - Chairman of Special Olympics

"I have observed the magic of Brad Cohen in the classroom. He has turned Tourette Syndrome into an asset, and his life into inspiration."
Senator Johnny Isakson, Georgia

"Brad Cohen's story is a triumph of hope, determination, will and relentless good humor."
Peter J. Hollenbeck, Ph.D., Professor and
Associate Head of Biological Sciences,
Purdue University

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