A superman, a super businesswoman and a super dog: here are our picks of good news from the past week.
Young homeless man becomes role model
Chris Channon proves that anything is possible if you’re determined to take a leap of faith.
Chris was homeless and not very hopeful when he came for a job interview with Cream’s Café back in May; but franchise owner Izzy Shanaz says she was more inclined to hire him because she knew about his background.
“I think I probably have more respect for him because I knew about his circumstances than I probably have for anybody else. I just think it’s amazing that he’s been able to take that initial step forward and he’s actually carried on with it.”
Nine months later Chris has completely changed his life, having raised enough money to get a flat, and even plans to go on holiday.
The best thing about his job is the people, he says. “Everyone gets on with each other. We all work really well together and we all click. I enjoy the job itself too. It’s nice to actually be able to make a product that people enjoy and have them come back. Great when I get some good feedback from customers too. It’s good for the confidence.”
Chris is now also trying to encourage people who are on the streets to try and turn their life around.
“I try to explain without preaching to them. I try to say that it is possible and you can see a lot of the time it just goes in deaf ears because they’re so resigned to being on the streets. Because there is so little hope out there. But there is. You just need to find the determination to look for it.”
“If you’re working for the money you earn, you feel like you’ve achieved something. You have earned your money while you’re giving something back. And you can also reward yourself.”
Health Food Brand LoveRaw Makes TV Debut
Altrincham-based entrepreneur, Rimi Thapar made her TV debut on Sunday on BBC’s Dragon’s Den.
Mrs Thapar, 34, introduced the investors to her range of organic, gluten-free and dairy-free products during a pitching session, and was looking for a cash injection in return for a stake in the £1 million business she founded five years ago.
Rimi created the company in 2013 after leaving a career in banking, using just £600 of her own money to buy ingredients and a blender and then hand-making products in her in-laws’ kitchen. Since then, LoveRaw has grown to be an international success.
Speaking about the show, Rimi, who manages the company with her husband, Manav, 34, says: “Being part of the show was an amazing experience – and a great opportunity to show people what we do and the philosophy behind our products. We are passionate about creating wholesome food that makes people feel good. The Dragons are great at what they do; having the chance to pitch to them is invaluable.”
Although Debra Meaden loved the range of organic, gluten and dairy-free products and wanted to invest in it, Mrs Thapar declined when she was asked for a 30 per cent stake in the company.
Based in the UK, the LoveRaw brand is dedicated to producing unprocessed food and it is sold in more than 21 countries across Europe and beyond.
Four-legged friend saved his owner’s life a hundred times
The Manchester Evening News told the story of Jade, the Golden Retriever who has detected that her diabetic owner’s blood glucose levels were low thousands of times.
Chris Gardner, 34, from Pendlebury was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 22 and needs to constantly pay attention to his blood sugar levels as they fluctuate dangerously high or low. His condition is so severe that he even enquired about a pancreas transplant, but has been told it would be too risky for him to undergo surgery.
Three years ago, Chris was introduced to golden retriever, Jade, by the charity Medical Detection Dogs. If his blood sugar drops below a certain level, Jade will place a paw on Chris if he’s sitting down, or jump up at him if he’s standing up, the MEN reported.
Over the course of three months, Jade warned Chris about dangerous blood sugar levels around 400 times, helping him take action and prevent becoming sick.
Chris said: “Her attachment to me is phenomenal, she is always by my side. She sleeps beside my bed and even when she is out running free on a walk she prefers to keep by my side.”
He added: “At the moment I am taking things slowly but steadily as my confidence grows. I still struggle on bad days but most days I try to cram in as much as possible with my wife and son with trips to the beach and museums. I’d like to get back to work – perhaps something in IT where an employer will accept a dog.”