Making the world better
Millions of people from all around the world connect on eBay. Each time that happens—about 69 times every second—something positive happens in the world. These are the stories of everyday people on eBay making an extraordinary difference in the lives of others.
Theresa & Alber Goldberg, GloMania USA & StarMakerFX Cosmic Dreams
Lighting up the night
When seven-year-old Mareto saw his Cosmic Star Ceiling for the first time, he knew instantly why he loved it: “Now I don’t have to be scared anymore,” he said. Nighttime is particularly tough for Mareto, who is on the autism spectrum and has generalized anxiety disorder. The first night with his new ceiling, Mareto slept 11 straight hours.
“Spiritually, it fills my soul doing these star ceilings. I’m giving something to a child that’s helping them to sleep or deal with pain. How humbling to touch a child’s life.” - Theresa Goldberg, co-founder, GloMania USA and StarMakerFX
Giving the moon and the stars
Mareto was born in Ethiopia at the time of a super moon. His mother, Lauren Casper, says he’s always been fascinated by the moon. So when Theresa and Alber Goldberg planned the Cosmic Star Ceiling for Mareto it had to have a magnificent moon.
“(Using software) we traveled back to 2010 and found out the stars that were literally over his head on the day he was born. We put those constellations on his ceiling. It’s just a little way to say we understand.” - Alber Goldberg, co-founder, GloMania and StarMakerFX
Peter Krohn, Holocaust survivor Lost and found
Teddy bear symbolizes family’s escape
Two-year old Peter Krohn screamed as Nazi officers cut up his beloved teddy bear as they searched for valuables. The distraction may have saved his family, as the officers didn’t find the gold coins Peter’s mother had hidden in a bag of caramels. Nearly 80 years later, Peter—who now lives in California—found a replica of his cherished bear on eBay. It was listed by a U.K. seller who had just acquired the bear at a house clearance.
“There was a sad teddy sitting in the corner. I didn’t know what do to with it, but I thought, ‘I’ll put it on eBay—on a world platform. There must be someone out there who would love it.’” - Stephen Latty, eBay seller
Teaching love and acceptance
Peter volunteers with The Story Project of Sonoma County, visiting schools with other Holocaust survivors to share stories of the past to help influence a better future. The program’s mission is to teach students moral and ethical responses to prejudice, indifference and hatred. Peter tells of his family’s escape from Germany, Italy and France during World War II—and how that experience shaped their lives and the generations that followed.
“The Story Project is a way of passing along to younger generations the value of love and acceptance of other human beings who are different. For kids to hear the story and see the bear—it’s a visual reminder,” - Peter Krohn, artist and Holocaust survivor
Chris Ko, ReviveIT Closing the Technology Gap
Opening a window to opportunity
STEM skills are in high demand in today’s job market—and the need is rapidly accelerating. That puts students who don’t have access to technology at home or in the classroom at a severe disadvantage to compete for the jobs of the future. With help from ReviveIT, one Arizona charter school is closing the gap.
“Kids who aren’t aware of jobs in STEM are going to keep going to the older jobs—and those jobs might be gone. With STEM education, these kids learn that they can do much more, or that they can make their own jobs. We’ve opened the window and let those limitations go.” - Lisa Smith, STEM educator, New World Educational Center
Refurbishing more than IT
ReviveIT refurbishes commercial-grade computers, enabling schools and small businesses to purchase high-quality technology at a lower cost. Beyond the positive environmental and economic impacts of its business, ReviveIT is reviving the community in which it operates.
“We bought a facility in an underprivileged area, and completely refurbished it, just like we do our computers. Then we hire from the local community to teach and train people. Through that, we’ve been able to make an impact outside these walls by directly working with our community.” - Chris Ko, CEO, ReviveIT
Laurie Wong, Reflections of Trinity Feeding the Hungry
A heart to help people in need
Roy Byrd has volunteered with Reflections of Trinity in Powder Springs, GA, for more than 10 years. When the nonprofit opened a food pantry in 2012, Roy rose to the challenge. As director of the food ministry, Roy makes sure nearly 400 families get food boxes each week.
“Everybody loves Roy. When the food truck pulls up, you see joy. You see smiles on everyone’s faces. We know that we’re making an impact in that community. We can see it plain as day on their faces.” - Laurie Wong, founder and CEO, Reflections of Trinity
Lifting up and giving back
Roy has witnessed people at their lowest point. As they return to the pantry week after week, he has seen how greater food security reduces their stress and helps them rebuild self-esteem. One former beneficiary now volunteers alongside Roy—helping lift up others as they were lifted up.
“It gives you a lot of self-pride to be able to come out of the poverty situation and go back into where you need to be in life.” - Roy Byrd, director, Team 58 Food Ministry, Reflections of Trinity
Cori O'Steen, Upaknship Supporting Addiction Recovery
Turning pain into purpose
Cori O’Steen felt helpless as her daughter battled drug addiction. Then a tattoo helped her turn her family’s personal pain into a much larger purpose—using her eBay business and voice to raise awareness and support for free, long-term addiction recovery centers.
“I thought about my daughter and her tattooed message of hope—three little birds from the Bob Marley song, ‘My burning sun will someday rise’ (from Doin’ Time by Sublime), a Lotus flower growing from muddy water, arrows on her fingers reminding her to keep moving forward. And I realized this flood of thoughts was my calling to do something to help those in need.” - Cori O’Steen, founder and CFO, Upaknship
Emergency response to addiction
Proceeds from the sale of Upaknship’s Recovery Tattoo mailers are helping establish two free, long-term centers in Cori’s community—and her vision is that these vital recovery resources will be available to serve people in need in communities everywhere.
“Addiction should be termed a national emergency. Almost half the people that die every day are dying from drug-related deaths. That’s an emergency.” - Cori O’Steen, founder and CFO, Upaknship
Our Other Heroes More Stories
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Hope after Harvey
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