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Public Safety

Daniela Perez, 5, is checking each #teachHope70x7 bag for a sandwich, chips and a snack before they are packed into the cars to go to the streets of downtown Miami. (Photo courtesy of #teachHope70x7)

Miami first-grade teacher launches #teachHope70x7 to ‘teach hope’ to the community

When Jocelyn Morffi, a first-grade teacher at Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic School in Miami, was talking to her students two years ago about recent tragedies in the world, she was inspired to show them that there is hope in the community. Then, a year later, she brainstormed with her new group of students about ways they could “teach hope” ...

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Emmanuel Ortiz, 17, takes a dive during swimming class at Palm Springs North Pool. (Photo by Hellen Rivas / South Florida News Service)

Learn-to-Swim program seeks to prevent drownings, No. 1 cause of small kids’ deaths

When Karina Medina took swimming lessons for the first time at age 8, she did not expect to become a lifeguard. Now at 17, her role is to protect others from a frequent occurrence in South Florida: drowning. According to the Miami-Dade Drowning Prevention Coalition, drowning is the county’s leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 4. “It ...

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After her asthma attack, Ashley went from dancing and enjoying her everyday childhood to recovering from a drug-induced coma, where she had to re-learn everything, including how to walk, write and eat.

Girl recovering from critical asthma attack launches foundation to raise awareness

When Ashley Marie Hierrezuelo, 12, left her dance practice three months ago, she didn’t feel well and asked to go to the hospital. Her parents figured it was another asthma attack that could be easily dealt with. But upon their arrival at the hospital, Ashley was given multiple treatments that didn’t help and resulted in her lungs continuing to fail. ...

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Silvia Vanni plays with Daniella Collazo as she carries her puppy, Olaf, named after the snowman character in her favorite Disney movie, Frozen. (Photo courtesy of Silvia Vanni)

Germ-free playground will help 2 year-old cancer patient thrive

As children walked through the lobby of Miami Children’s Hospital last month, 2-year-old Daniella Collazo greeted them with a smile and a wave. “It’s OK. You’ll be OK,” she said to the passing children. About a year earlier, Daniella had been diagnosed with neuroblastoma stage III cancer, a type of cancer that develops in the nerve tissue with a high ...

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Alexander Gonzalez, 27, from Hialeah plays the character Oliver in front of the chorus during a performance of Oliver Button is a Sissy, a musical meant to teach kids about bullying, by The Miami Gay Men’s Chorus at Coral Gables Congregational Church in Coral Gables on Feb. 25. (Photo by Chris Curto / Miami Herald)

Miami Gay Chorus performance to highlight bullying

When Raul Morin was 15, he sat in front of the class jock in school, “the wrestler, football player, big, beefy guy,” who bullied him for being gay. “I was the class nerd, the closeted white elephant no one could talk about,” said Morin, now 33. The bully would write the word “fag” on the back of his shirt, in ...

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