When Julia Vitarello's precious daughter Mila was diagnosed with Batten disease at the age of seven, she was terrified and heartbroken. Determined to save Mila by any means possible, Julia set out to raise enough money to fund an experimental clinical trial, and what happened next made medical history.
When high school students and sisters Nanette and Krystal Amihere noticed that there were not many youth advocacy programs in their town, they decided to start their own in an effort to strengthen the community. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the sisters harnessed their program’s foundations and launched an initiative to make masks and cards for frontline workers and nursing home residents. What started out as a small, local project eventually saw young people from all over the world getting involved.
When Elijah Lee was in the first grade, he learned that one of his classmates was experiencing child abuse. He assisted her in getting help, but the experience left him with a heavy heart. Today, Elijah is 13-years-old and is a passionate teen activist who believes that all children have the right to grow up in safe, loving environments.
When the coronavirus swept through New York City this past spring, Brian Taylor had no choice but to close his dog grooming business to the public. But while in lockdown, his heart hurt for his community members and their pets. Under financial strain, many of them could no longer afford the essential grooming services that kept their dogs clean and healthy. So as soon as it was safe to do so, Brian began grooming pups at no cost while raising money for others.
Dec 16, 2020
Last year, 14-year-old Lorenzo Liberti discovered a passion to honor and help veterans in his community who were in need. Using his artistic talents, he carved beautiful, 3-foot long American flags by hand to benefit a local charity. When the COVID-19 crisis hit the country, he realized his flags could also help honor and support frontline healthcare workers across the US. Today, his heroic flags hang in hospitals around the country as an emblem of hope and thanks to the people working there.
Dec 9, 2020
Ra Ra Rollins is a full-time student at New York University and is going for his master’s degree in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness, with a focus on LGBTQ+ communities. However, Ra Ra’s journey to this path was not linear and he’s had to overcome a myriad of obstacles to make it a reality. One thing he’s learned throughout this journey is that, although it can be terrifying to put yourself out there, vulnerability can lead to beautiful things.
Dec 3, 2020
Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, frontline workers have been risking their lives every day to keep vital services going for those who need it. Many of them need support themselves but don’t have the time or energy to seek it out. In response, a group of mental health professionals created a solution that allows frontline workers to easily access therapy—free of charge.
Nov 26, 2020
Mark Lytal isn’t one to take a hot shower for granted. He never forgot his 20 years in the US Air Force, when deployment would often mean long stretches of time without running water and nothing but baby wipes to keep himself clean. His experience eventually motivated him to create a volunteer-led organization that provides hot showers and hygiene products to folks experiencing homelessness. To date, he’s helped thousands of people stay safe, clean, and hopeful.
Nov 18, 2020
When 8-year-old Madi Wilson noticed that there weren’t any crayons at school that matched her skin color, she told her mom she felt sad. Motivated to help all kids feel seen and represented, she launched a project to help deliver multicultural books & art supplies to classrooms in her school—and it grew bigger than she ever imagined.
Nov 11, 2020
Shawn Dromgoole's family has lived in the same Nashville neighborhood for over 50 years, and he has lived there for his entire life. After hearing about the deaths of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, Shawn became fearful of walking alone in his own neighborhood and shared his frustrations online. What happened next was a show of support that Shawn never expected, and it has grown into an entire movement across the country.
Nov 5, 2020