Stephen Carroll of Johnston, RI has lived most of his life in a wheelchair, born with Cerebral Palsy. His family raised him to be independent and through the years Stephen has overcome many obstacles. Come senior year he wanted to go to his prom but up until a few days before that appeared to be yet another obstacle, because he did not have a date.
But when 16 year old Tayler Boardman-Kelly a junior from North Providence, RI heard bit Stephen she wanted to be his prom date. If you ask Tayler she will say her gesture is not a big deal, but her act of sharing metta went viral. When students at Stephen's school found out he was going to prom, they became inspired and spread even more metta. Unbeknownst to Stephen they created the Stephen Nation Twitter account urging fellow students to nominate Stephen Prom King. Nearly everyone voted for Stephen.
The spirit of that 2012 prom night moved many others to pass on Stephen and Tayler’s story. Metta Students Founder Norm Kelly heard what happened while taking class at Raffa Yoga in Cranston.That night board member Christine Raffa told the story to her yoga class and while laying on his mat Norm realized he needed to keep the acts of metta moving.
October 7th the Metta Student Foundation honored Tayler and Stephen, presenting them each with $1,000. Kelly wanted the first presentation to be done at the birthplace of the Metta Student's Foundation, at the Raffa Yoga Studio. Since then, we have awarded over $25,000 in grants to students who #sharemetta.