“One of the most transformational things I’ve experienced in my own life is the power of words of affirmation.”
Peter Mutabazi grew up poor in Uganda and eventually became a street kid. When a stranger took him off the streets and showed him kindness through his actions and words of affirmation, everything changed. Peter started to hope and dream again.
“When I became a foster dad, I started using words of affirmation with my own kids.” Foster kids deal with trauma. That trauma can cause kids to act out.
“Today, being a foster dad for kids from hard places I know using words of affirmation is impactful. But my kids aren’t always open to receiving them from me.”
Peter noticed that while his kids sometimes couldn’t ‘hear’ him, they always responded well to their dog, Simba.
“That’s when I came up with the idea to put phrases of affirmation on a bandana that Simba would wear. He was able to deliver the message I wanted my kids to have. It also became a great reminder for me to use those words and phrases more often!”
When he took in another foster son, and then 2 more, one social media follower reached out to offer another puppy. “‘One dog isn’t enough for all of you,’ she said...I thought she was joking!”
But she wasn’t and Peter decided to surprise his kids with the new addition.
Watch as Peter drives 1000 miles and pulls off a surprise his kids didn’t see coming!
Originally published on TODAY
Davide Di Giorgio is a speaker, author, and advocate. His latest project, Now I Am Known is giving vulnerable kids and young people the opportunity to feel seen, heard, and loved. His TED talk, Overcoming Comparanoia® is fueling a mission to empower people, especially young people, to compare less, celebrate more, and to spread kindness to all.