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Why We Built This

I am alone on a two hour car drive. To pass the time, I listen to my favorite podcast, “How I Built This” hosted by Guy Raz. In this episode, he is interviewing Sal Khan who founded Khan Academy. As usual, I am riveted by how the story unfolds as the miles pass by. As the setting sun paints the sky first gold and then pink, I am transported into Sal’s life and the story of how he built a platform that provides free education to millions of people around the world.

Before I know it, it’s the end of the interview. I drive the last few miles with tears in my eyes feeling my heart deeply touched because this man is a Hero in the truest sense of the word, not motivated by money, but by a desire to make this world a better place for all. He has a big dream.

Many people would want the world to be better, but not many people would devote their entire life to making it so.

I arrive at my destination and feel compelled to sit down and write this, our very first blog post. We are only a few weeks away from launching True Local Heroes. Our little team (consisting of Adèle, Lucele, Wisdom, Anika, Aktar and Dumitri and myself) have worked tirelessly for the last few years to make this platform the best it can be. I am excited, scared, and optimistic about the future.

Wisdom, our digital marketing specialist, a wonderful, smart, kind, and committed young man,  told me we need a blog page because it’s good for SEO but I now know that we need a blog to celebrate HEROES. 

Sal Khan is a global Hero in the truest sense of the word, but we can all be the Hero in our own lives. Every time that we do something for someone else, not because it is expected of us, or we get paid for it, but just because it’s a kind and good thing to do, we become more of the Hero we were meant to be and our world becomes a better place. Every time we are brave and step outside our comfort zone to do something good for ourselves we are our own Hero. And the more heroic we become the more we inspire those around us to do the same. 

Even something as small and as easy as a smile can make the world a better place in a tangible way. Driving kindly, not being impatient with your fellow motorists can create ripple effects throughout your community. Picking up just one piece of garbage is a heroic act for the planet  and an example for others. Working on yourself so you become more patient, more humble, more disciplined and more kind—these are all acts of heroism.

I am so excited to launch True Local Heroes. It is my belief that it will facilitate people truly  connecting with one another and it is my great hope that the spirit of True Local Heroes will inspire people to go above and beyond for one another. I truly and deeply believe that we can create a better world together.

So, this very first blog post is a salute to my small team, to the real world Heroes, to all those who tirelessly and selflessly do for others, and it is also a salute to our own inner Heroes, waiting in the wings of our lives to step out and help us do great things.

May we all do good things together. May we be brave. 

May you be true. May you be you.

— Lara

Oct 11, 2023 | By Lara Pienaar


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