We could all use some good news, so let’s take a second to visit some of the stuff people are doing to help each other through this challenging time of uncertainty and fear. Oh, wait… it’s gonna take way longer than a second because there are SO many examples of goodness in the world right now, we can’t even fit them all here- if we tried, our website would crash hard.
So get out your hankies and prepare to be moved. Here are just a few of the things we’ve seen that blow our minds- with a cheeky one-liner or two thrown in for good measure.
The outpourings of financial support from corporations, celebrities, and community businesses that technically, really don’t have to care.
- An investment company in Jonesboro Arkansas ceased collecting rent from its tenants who own restaurants during the month of April. Instead, Young Investment Company asked them to use the money to “Pay your employees and take care of your families.” A message from Young Investment Company’s Facebook page urges its tenants to “Stay strong. We will get through this together!” The company owns properties housing at least five restaurants and coffee houses. No Scrooges workin’ there.
- Southeastern Grocers- owners of BI-LO, Winn-Dixie, Fresco y Mas, and Harveys Supermarkets, surprised first responders and health care professionals in seven states by telling them “Your groceries are on us tonight- thanks for all you do…” when they got to the checkout. The company said actor and director Tyler Perry (Matea!) inspired them to help even more when he paired with Winn-Dixie and purchased all the groceries at all 29 Louisiana locations for their senior and high-risk customers. How d’ya like them apples?
- After NBA games were suspended due to coronavirus, everyone involved in the sports world was affected, from the players to the employees who work in the arenas. This is why Cleveland Cavaliers player Kevin Love donated $100,000 to help support the hourly employees working at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, home of the Cavaliers. Someone’s mama taught him well…
Acts of solidarity and support for our front-line heroes are everywhere.
- NYC, Spain, Italy, and a ton of other cities are coordinating to give a round of applause from rooftops, balconies, and wherever they can to cheer on their local healthcare workers. Some even cheer for those who aren’t so local- like these German citizens singing in solidarity for those in Italy during one of their darkest times.
- Rescuing Families, Inc, a nonprofit charity on Long Island that remodels homes for the disabled, had to cease operations of their business when coronavirus hit. That didn’t dampen their giving spirit. They realized they had a pretty plentiful supply of N95 masks, and they knew there was a shortage out there for medical workers and first responders, so they took to Facebook to get the word out. Needless to say, they were heard by the people who needed them the most. One head of an emergency room in a Dallas hospital contacted them looking for masks for his whole staff- and after they took care of him, they went further and reached out to other contractors to urge them to donate masks. Since then- they’ve been able to send supplies all over the country to doctors, nurses, and police officers.
- A Vancouver-based Chick-Fil-A brought lunch, like 350 lunches, to the Doctors, nurses, and other staff at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center. If you’ve never had a Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwich, let’s put it this way, it’s the food of the gods. When you’re starving like a whole staff of overloaded healthcare workers, apparently it’s more than that- it brings people to tears. Kudos, Chick-Fil-A.
- There’s a chef in NYC named Tracy Wilk who wants us to BAKE. Tracy is a professional chef, and an instructor at the Institute of Culinary Education (so she knows what she’s doing), and when she was furloughed from her job, she used the extra time on her hands to take care of those toiling in the hospitals who take care of us by baking goodies for them. The response was so overwhelming she decided to create #BakeItForward to get others to start baking! Just be sure to call ahead and see if your hospital is ready to accept food donations. Here are some of her amazing recipes and a little more information about what she’s doing… (The common snickerdoodle has been elevated, we’ll just say that much.)
Teachers, parents, and students are coming together to support each other.
- So many amazing teachers have gone the extra mile to show their students they love them by forming caravans and driving by their student’s homes, honking and cheering to let them know they missed them. It would appear their children miss them just as much, especially the littlest ones.
- For one kindergarten teacher, it was an especially difficult time. Jean Witt, a kindergarten teacher in Broomfield, CO, was preparing to retire when her farewell year was cut short- and she found herself missing her little people when schools were canceled almost two months early. Mrs. Witt was worried about her babies being so suddenly cut off from their teachers and each other, “Their little lives have suddenly and drastically changed,” Witt told Good Morning America. “We may not have a chance to be together again this school year! I wanted to see my precious students and tell them how much I love them.” So she delivered books, crayons, and care packages to each of their doors, contacting each family ahead of time to let them know she was coming. She blew kisses and gave air-hugs from her car as her husband drove, and her daughter took video while tears everywhere jerked.
- Chris Waba, a sixth-grade math teacher in South Dakota, was working with one of his students via email. When he saw she was having a hard time with a particular problem, and getting frustrated, he…*get this*… showed up IN PERSON ON HER FRONT PORCH WITH A WHITEBOARD. He worked with her for fifteen minutes through her glass door to help make sure she got it. If any of you have had, or know any middle school students, you know what a thankless job being a 6th-grade math teacher can be. And you can also appreciate the gratitude her parents probably felt. Read the whole heartwarming, uplifting story here. Because that’s what heroes do.
- Custodial staff around the country (and the world, for that matter) are working overtime to clean their schools- an arduous task that sometimes takes days, all while potentially exposing themselves to contamination just to keep their kids and teachers safe. So a mama in Williston, Vermont, took to Facebook to express her gratitude- and her concern for the custodial staff at their local school system who mobilized to deep clean after a member of the school staff tested positive for the coronavirus. She launched a fundraiser, hoping to raise $200 or so- after just four days, they had $7,450 to split among the eight custodians on staff. Well done, guys.
People are taking care of the most vulnerable among us.
- For 25 years, Greg Dailey has been a newspaper delivery man in Mercer County, New Jersey. Since the coronavirus closures have begun, he’s taken a second job- volunteer grocery delivery man-bringing groceries to seniors in his community. After offering to leave one of his customer’s newspapers closer to her home to help her limit the amount of time she would be outside- he began to think about how some would get necessities like groceries if they didn’t have family or friends to help. He called her up to ask if she needed anything, and from there, he became a godsend for lots of seniors on his route, and now he’s a godsend for many others outside of his route. When he caught the eye of reporters from his local news station, he told them he and his family intended to keep on delivering groceries to those who needed it for as long as they needed.
- At Southern Grace Hospice outside of Atlanta, people are coming together to make sure the senors there get the supplies they need without potential exposure to COVID. Yasna Grainger, the community liaison for Southern Grace Hospice, has expressed her appreciation and that of the patients in Hospice care to those who stepped up and donated disinfecting supplies, food, and water.
- People in isolation recovering from COVID got a beautiful, handmade surprise from fourth, fifth, and sixth graders in Columbus, Nebraska. The kids made colorful, cheerful get well soon cards for the patients in quarantine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Apparently, they were a hit- “We just heard from the folks in isolation here what a huge impact these made!” the hospital wrote. “‘It was a real bright spot in my day. They were just so darling and heartfelt.'” You’ve got to see these cards- they’re adorable, click here and prepare to smile.
People are finding ways to celebrate together alone.
- A video on Instagram emerged courtesy of the Good News Movement showing apartment residents in Madrid, Spain, surprising their neighbor for her 80th birthday by leaving a cake on her doorstep and singing “Happy Birthday” to her. You’ll melt when you see her reaction.
- A little boy named Isaac in California had to cancel his fifth birthday party after the COVID quarantine, seriously bumming him out- but he got an awesome surprise when a caravan of neighbors and teachers from his school drove by his house armed with balloons and signs, cheering, honking and shouting happy birthday wishes to him. We’re guessing it’s a birthday he’ll never forget!
- A couple in BC, Canada had to cut their wedding way back from 135 guests down to just a handful due to COVID restrictions, so they decided to throw in the towel and get married in the groom’s parent’s house instead of postponing. They rode from the house to another location in a limousine for the wedding pics, when the driver told them to roll down their windows. They were greeted by cheering friends lining the streets, holding balloons, streamers, and congratulations signs. You can see the full article, complete with beautiful photos here.
Loved ones are finding creative and meaningful ways to let each other know how much they care.
- A tight-knit 80-year-old grandfather and his 6-year-old granddaughter in Nashville, TN, missed hanging out, so they had a social-distancing-dance-off. Apparently, they live across the street from each other and are used to taking walks, doing stuff together at her school, and just generally spending time together every day, so when they had to stay isolated in their homes, they got improvisational. (The dance-off was Kira’s idea- Well played, girl!) You can see the epic incident here, get ready for ALL the feels.
- Since moving into a nursing home, Ann Kline has received a visit every day from her husband. Because of the COVID pandemic, of course, the nursing home was forced to implement a no visitor’s policy to protect its residents. But you know what they say- love will find a way, especially if it’s lasted over 45 years. He still shows up every day- but he serenades her through her window instead of at her bedside. John is staying positive and lauds the staff at the home for their care, support, and diligence in making sure their patients stay well. Watch him sing to her. You’ll get schooled on how to up your relationship game.
- In a gesture of support, a Virginia dad practiced for an upcoming Zoom ballet performance with his 6-year-old daughter. She had been taking classes via Zoom since the pandemic sidelined everyone to their homes, and was nervous about her performance- to the point of tears. Well, what’s an awesome dad to do? Ballet, of course.
If that’s not enough to inspire you and give you faith in humanity, we’ll just leave these here:
- Hospitals across the country are going through tough times right now, Amidst the tough times, hospitals and medical centers are experiencing – health care workers at Ellis Medicine Hospital in New York are going out of their way to lift the spirits of their COVID-19 patients. It began with employee Alicia Hottois encouraging people to leave positive messages around the halls and on the whiteboards in the patient’s rooms. Inspiration like “Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” and “Focus on the step in front of you, not the whole staircase.” popped up all over the hospital’s whiteboards, but it didn’t stop there. The hospital staff went further and is sending patients get-well cards and care packages. Hottois spoke to “Good Morning America” about the hospital staff’s compassion, and had this to say: “Even though loved ones can’t be at their bedside, we will be.” If this doesn’t make you tear up, even just a tiny bit, we’re not sure what would.
- You probably saw the news about all those cruise ships quarantined out there in the middle of the water when the pandemic started, some for months on end. One of those was the Diamond Princess, stuck in limbo at the port of Yokohama, Japan, to keep over 700 passengers who tested positive for COVID-19 quarantined until it was safe to disembark. Nightmarish, right? Well, Captain Gennaro Arma showed everyone how to stay brave. Multiple passengers aboard the cruise lauded Captain Arma for his encouragement, sense of humor, and optimism throughout the ordeal. After providing so much comfort to so many frightened people, he did what a stellar example of a dignified ship’s Captain would do: he waited until every last passenger had left the boat before disembarking himself. Read the full story here – two words: Class. Act.
And Finally This…
- Tiny Taytum Bauman wants to make us feel better. To do so, she took to the internet via her (pretend) YouTube channel to coach us all on how to stay calm, stay safe, and be optimistic despite the gravity of the world’s situation. She re-iterates the severity of the circumstances in the world, but my goodness she’s adorable. And hilarious. Seriously, do yourself a favor and watch her video, she’ll make your day.
If you’re like us and can’t get enough, click here to check out GMA’s series of good news stories to make you feel a little better during these… we’ll call them difficult… times. Keep your chin up!