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This father-daughter story starts with a surgery and ends with an epic tattoo.

This dad found an awesome way to make his daughter feel a little less self-conscious about her cochlear implants.

This father-daughter story starts with a surgery and ends with an epic tattoo.

For the Campbells, hearing loss is part of their family story.

Meet the Campbell family! Image via Anita Campbell, used with permission.


Anita Campbell's mother had a cochlear implant, and her 8-year-old son Lewis wears hearing aids. She wasn't too surprised when her youngest child Charlotte was diagnosed as hearing impaired. As she grew older, Charlotte's hearing became progressively worse, which, in turn, made her painfully shy. In 2013, 4-year-old Charlotte Campbell underwent surgery to install a cochlear implant.

What's a cochlear implant you say? Well, I'm glad you asked!

A cochlear implant is a medical device that can help some deaf and hard of hearing people hear.

Image by Bjorn Knetsch/Wikipedia Commons.

For some people who are profoundly deaf or have severe hearing loss, the cochlear implant can provide a sense of sound and help them better understand speech. Now notice I said "some people" and "can provide" — that's because cochlear implants don't work for everyone. And there are even members of the deaf community who are anti-cochlear implant because they feel their disability doesn't need "fixing." While the device isn't for everyone (either by choice or by design), for some, it's an important part of being able to function in and communicate with the world around them. For Charlotte, her surgery was the key to bringing her out of her shell. According to her mom, Charlotte did a complete 180, from church mouse to "social butterfly."

In 2015, Charlotte had a second cochlear implant installed to help improve her hearing. Her dad came up with a genius way to show his support.

Even though Charlotte already had one implant, going under the knife a second time (especially at such a young age) was pretty scary. When it came time for her second cochlear surgery, her dad Alistair came up with a genius idea: dedicate his very first tattoo to his brave little girl.

They match! Image by Anita Campbell, used with permission.

Raise your hand if you're bawling. Oh, just me? Suuure.

One shaved head and 45 minutes later, Alistair showed off his brand new cochlear implant tattoo on Facebook. Of course, it didn't take long for the photo to go viral. Eventually, the local New Zealand Herald picked up the story, which is where I first found this adorable family.

Every kid has to deal with feeling different, but a family's love can make all the difference.

Even though Charlotte's a little young to understand how tattoos work, she still thinks her dad's ink is cool. Whether it's getting a tattoo, shaving your head, (or both), sometimes you have to get creative to offer support to the people you love. Feeling different or out of place can really suck, and that's where our friends and family are essential.

Maybe you aren't ready to shave your head and go under the needle for one of your loved ones (some of us don't have perfectly-shaped heads), but there are tons of creative ways you can show solidarity and support when the going gets tough. Maybe it's funny matching T-shirts, a charity dance party, or stuffing someone's room with balloons.

Alistair is a perfect reminder that going the extra mile when our friends and family need it can make those difficult times a little easier.

If you were moved by Charlotte and Alistair's story, you can make a donation to Hear 4 Kids Trust, which helps kids with hearing disabilities.

Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

Ready for the weekend? Of course, you are. Here's our weekly dose of good vibes to help you shed the stresses of the workweek and put yourself in a great frame of mind.

These 10 stories made us happy this week because they feature amazing creativity, generosity, and one super-cute fish.

1. Diver befriends a fish with the cutest smile

Hawaiian underwater photographer Yuki Nakano befriended a friendly porcupine fish and now they hang out regularly.

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