‘The Thanklist’ is a Reminder That All it Takes is One Positive Influence to Change a Life

With all the negativity in the news, it can be easy to believe that kindness and appreciation have fallen by the wayside in the world today, but of course we know that’s not the case. A small action like saying “thank you” has the power to multiply a million fold and make a difference. We’ve all heard of a bucket list, and now it’s time to focus our attention on a “thanklist.”

That’s the message behind this short film, giving thanks to those that deserve it. Waliek, a youth mentor in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn was asked to write down a list of five people that had a positive impact on his life. The #1 person on his list was John Walker, a teacher that Waliek had when growing up in his rough, crime-addled neighborhood.

“He would pour positivit into us. He would tell us ‘You all can be anything you want to be. I love you all.'” That was the first time that I heard an adult telling us that he love us.”


Waliek shared with his students the story of how Mr. Walker fought for him and helped make him the man he is today and kept him from growing down the wrong path. What Waliek didn’t expect when speaking to his class was a surprise visit from his former mentor. “My heart skipped like three beats, because I never thought I would see him again,” said Waliek.



Mr. Walker spoke to Waliek’s students and reiterated how important it is to believe in one’s self. “I don’t know if he knows how impactful he was and he deserves to know,” said Waliek. Which brings us to the question, who’s on your Thanklist?

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