Some know that I’ve been a Big Sister to “Jasmine” through the Big Brothers/Sisters Program; we’ve been “Big” and “Little” since late 2012 when Jasmine was seven years old.

Beginning in 2012, Jasmine and I made it a holiday tradition to attend the Walker Museum’s (Minneapolis) airing of the British Arrow Awards—TV commercials from England that have won awards in Bronze, Silver, Gold and Commercial of the Year categories. The commercials are both funny and thought-provoking and give one a view of what’s important in another part of the world.

This year’s award-winners are no exception. However, I didn’t expect to be so emotionally taken by three of the commercials.

Two of the spots, Harry and Ahmed and Still the Most Shocking Second a Day , are about welcoming refugees. Harry and Ahmed features a split screen with Harry (a refugee from the Nazi Holocaust) and Ahmed (a teenage refugee from Syria) each talking about their escapes from horror and how they survived only due to the kindness of a host country.

Still the Most Shocking Second a Day powerfully tells the story of a young European girl (I believe the intent is to portray her as British) whose family is decimated by civil war. We follow as she transforms from happy middle-class child to refugee. The tag line at the end of the ad says it all: “Just because it’s not happening here, doesn’t mean it’s not happening.” (Click here , here  and here to see versions of the ad.)

The third commercial, We’re the Superhumans , which scored Commercial of the Year, is about the Paralympics and features many people—athletes, musicians, dancers, and others—with what otherwise might be considered debilitating disabilities. And wow, you’d never know it! The ad’s tagline, “Yes I can!”, has a special pointed twist near the end. (And I won’t give it away.)

If you do nothing else with this month’s Ripple newsletter, I urge you to watch and share each of these commercials. I suspect they will expand your perspective in ways that you might not have imagined. I, for one, have been super-charged by the ads to go forward in 2018 with even greater vigor to make this world of ours more inclusive and welcoming to all, regardless of our differences.

In the end, isn’t that what the holidays are really about?

If you’re close to the Twin Cities, the Walker will be showing the British Arrow Awards through Dec. 30.