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31 celebrities who smashed the stigma surrounding mental illness in 2016.

"Like a dandelion up through the pavement, I persist."

It may not seem like that big of a deal when a celebrity speaks up about their experiences with mental illness. But it is.

Throughout 2016, dozens of actors, authors, artists, and athletes — trailblazers we're used to seeing smiling on red carpets or snagging gold medals on TV — shared the personal battles they've faced behind closed doors. It was a groundbreaking year.

“It levels the playing field," Aaron Harvey says of the many public figures who chose to speak up. Harvey is the founder of Intrusive Thoughts, a group set on humanizing those living with mental illness. “Suddenly, you realize the same struggles that you have might be the same struggles that someone you really idolize have. And that [makes it] OK."


The stigma surrounding mental illness is taking lives. Many millions of people living with conditions like depression and anxiety are shamed into believing there's something inherently wrong with them — that they're weak, for instance, or even dangerous to others. They suffer in silence because of it.

When a person with a platform becomes a face others can relate to, it becomes a little bit easier for someone else to follow in their footsteps, talk to someone, and get the help they need. Speaking up can save a life.

Here are 31 celebrities who spoke out in 2016 — some of them for the first time — about their experiences living with a mental illness:

1. Actress Kristen Bell wrote about why you can't trust all of your thoughts when you're battling depression.

Photo by Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images.

"For me, depression is not sadness. It’s not having a bad day and needing a hug. It gave me a complete and utter sense of isolation and loneliness. Its debilitation was all-consuming, and it shut down my mental circuit board. I felt worthless, like I had nothing to offer, like I was a failure. Now, after seeking help, I can see that those thoughts, of course, couldn’t have been more wrong." — Kristen Bell, on living with depression

2. Singer Selena Gomez reminded us that you never really know what's going on in someone else's head.

Photo by Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images.

"I had to stop. 'Cause I had everything, and I was absolutely broken inside. And I kept it all together enough to where I would never let you down, but I kept it too much together, to where I let myself down. I don't want to see your bodies on Instagram, I want to see what's in here. [puts hand on heart] I'm not trying to get validation, nor do I need it anymore. ... If you are broken, you don’t have to stay broken." — Selena Gomez, on living with anxiety and depression

3. Musical artist Kid Cudi got candid about the limitations that living with a mental illness put on his own life.

Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images.

"My anxiety and depression have ruled my life for as long as I can remember and I never leave the house because of it. I can't make new friends because of it. I don't trust anyone because of it and Im tired of being held back in my life. I deserve to have peace. I deserve to be happy and smiling. Why not me?" — Kid Cudi, on living with anxiety and depression

4. Actor Wentworth Miller opened up about becoming the butt of a body-shaming joke amid his struggle to survive.

Photo by Angela Weiss/Getty Images.

"Now, when I see that image of me in my red t-shirt, a rare smile on my face, I am reminded of my struggle. My endurance and my perseverance in the face of all kinds of demons. Some within. Some without. Like a dandelion up through the pavement, I persist." — Wentworth Miller, on living with depression

5. Actress Hayden Panettiere shared with fans that they might be seeing less of her because, first and foremost, she needed to prioritize getting well.

Photo by Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images.

“The postpartum depression I have been experiencing has impacted every aspect of my life. Rather than stay stuck due to unhealthy coping mechanisms, I have chosen to take time to reflect holistically on my health and life. Wish me luck!" — Hayden Panettiere, on living with postpartum depression

6. Singer Zayn Malik penned an essay on why he had to cancel performances due to severe anxiety.

Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP.

"The thing is, I love performing. I love the buzz. I don’t want to do any other job. That’s why my anxiety is so upsetting and difficult to explain. It’s this thing that swells up and blocks out your rational thought processes. Even when you know you want to do something, know that it will be good for you, that you’ll enjoy it when you’re doing it, the anxiety is telling you a different story. It’s a constant battle within yourself." — Zayn Malik, on living with anxiety

7. Artist Lady Gaga revealed a secret about her own battles at an event benefitting young homeless teens in New York.

Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images.

"My own trauma in my life has helped me to understand the trauma of others. I told the kids today that I suffer from a mental illness. I suffer from PTSD. I've never told that to anyone before, so here we are." — Lady Gaga, on living with post-traumatic stress disorder

8. NFL wide receiver Brandon Marshall explained why organizing with one another — not hiding away — is crucial for those living with a mental illness.

Photo by Julio Cortez/AP.

“I thought, ‘How many others are out there suffering?’ I tell people all the time, you know, where we’re at in [the mental health] community is where the cancer and HIV community was 20, 25 years ago. So we have to galvanize this community.” — Brandon Marshall, on living with borderline personality disorder

9. Actress Rachel Bloom showed us why we shouldn't let stereotypes about medication dictate whether we should get the proper help we need.

Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for The Critics' Choice Awards.

"I had gone to therapists, but for the first time I sought out a psychiatrist. In his office I finally felt safe. I told him everything. Each session improved my life. He diagnosed me with low-grade depression and put me on a small amount of Prozac. There’s a stereotype (I had believed) that antidepressants numb you out; that didn’t happen to me." — Rachel Bloom, on living with depression

10. Musical artist Justin Vernon of Bon Iver got real about what a panic attack can actually feel like.

Photo by D Dipasupil/Getty Images.

“It was like: ‘Oh my god, my chest is caving in, what the f**k is going on?’ I don’t like talking about it, but I feel it’s important to talk about it, so that other people who experience it don’t feel it’s just happening to them.” — Justin Vernon, on living with panic attacks and depression

11. Singer Demi Lovato pointed out the importance of consistently staying on top of your health for the long haul.

Photo by Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images.

"It’s not something where you see a therapist once or you see your psychiatrist once, it’s something you maintain to make sure that you want to live with mental illness. You have to take care of yourself.” — Demi Lovato, on living with bipolar disorder

12. Actress Lena Dunham opened up about how anxiety affects her day-to-day routines.

Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images.

“I’ve always been anxious, but I haven’t been the kind of anxious that makes you run 10 miles a day and make a lot of calls on your BlackBerry. I’m the kind of anxious that makes you like, ‘I’m not going to be able to come out tonight, tomorrow night, or maybe for the next 67 nights.’” — Lena Dunham, on living with anxiety

13. NFL guard Brandon Brooks discussed the difference between game-day jitters and the type of anxiety he experiences.

Photo by Greg Trott/AP.

“I wanted to get to the bottom of what’s going on. Basically, I found out recently that I have an anxiety condition. What I mean by anxiety condition [is] not nervousness or fear of the game. ... I have, like, an obsession with the game. It’s an unhealthy obsession right now and I’m working with team doctors to get everything straightened out and getting the help that I need and things like that.” — Brandon Brooks, on living with anxiety

14. Actress Evan Rachel Wood spoke out about how our world's tendency to overlook or dismiss certain groups can complicate a person's mental health.

Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

"For so long, I was ashamed. You’re dealing with the shame that the world has imposed upon you, and then on top of that, the shame of identifying that way. You’re totally looked down upon in and out of the LGBT community. A good way to combat that and the stereotypes is to be vocal." — Evan Rachel Wood, on living with depression and coming out as bisexual

15. Actress Cara Delevingne got real about her early struggles living with a sense of hopelessness.

Photo by Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images.

"I'm very good at repressing emotion and seeming fine. As a kid I felt like I had to be good and I had to be strong because my mum wasn't. So, when it got to being a teenager and all the hormones and the pressure and wanting to do well at school — for my parents, not for me — I had a mental breakdown. I was suicidal. I couldn't deal with it any more. I realized how lucky and privileged I was, but all I wanted to do was die." — Cara Delevingne, on living with depression

16. Comedian Patton Oswalt laid out the difference between living with depression and surviving the devastation of losing a loved one.

Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP.

“Depression is more seductive. Its tool is: ‘Wouldn’t it be way more comfortable to stay inside and not deal with people?’ Grief is an attack on life. It’s not a seducer. It’s an ambush or worse. It stands right out there and says: ‘The minute you try something, I’m waiting for you.’” — Patton Oswalt, on living with depression and the grief brought on by his wife's death

17. Singer Kesha opened up about what led her to a rehab program focused on treating eating disorders.

Photo by Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images.

"I felt like part of my job was to be as skinny as possible and, to make that happen, I had been abusing my body. I just wasn't giving it the energy it needed to keep me healthy and strong." — Kesha, on living with an eating disorder

18. Author John Green wrote about the dangers of romanticizing mental illness.

Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images for Allied-THA.

"Mental illness is stigmatized, but it is also romanticized. If you google the phrase 'all artists are,' the first suggestion is 'mad.' We hear that genius is next to insanity. ... Of course, there are kernels of truth here: Many artists and storytellers do live with mental illness. But many don’t. And what I want to say today, I guess, is that you can be sane and be an artist, and also that if you are sick, getting help  —  although it is hard and exhausting and inexcusably difficult to access  —  will not make you less of an artist." — John Green, on living with depression

19. Musical artist Halsley discussed her attempt at suicide as a teenager.

Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

“I had tried to kill myself. I was an adolescent; I didn’t know what I was doing. Because I was 17, I was still in a children’s ward. Which was terrifying. I was in there with 9-year-olds who had tried to kill themselves.” — Halsley, on living with bipolar disorder, and once staying in a psychiatric hospital

20. Prince Harry addressed the problem with assuming people who seemingly have their lives in order aren't struggling with an invisible issue.

Photo by Chris Jackson - Pool/Getty Images.

You know, I really regret not ever talking about it. ... A lot of people think if you’ve got a job, if you’ve got financial security, if you’ve got a family, you’ve got a house, all that sort of stuff — everyone seems to think that is all you need and you are absolutely fine to deal with stuff.” — Prince Harry, on living with grief after his mother's death

21. Actress Rowan Blanchard explained why living with a mental illness can be a learning opportunity.

Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for WE Day.

"I learned this year that happiness and sadness are not mutually exclusive. They can exist within me at the same time in the same moment. While also becoming more forgiving of myself and my emotions, I became more forgiving of others, specifically other teenagers." — Rowan Blanchard, on living with depression

22. Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps spoke candidly about why even gold medals couldn't truly make him happy.

Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images.

“I went in with no self-confidence, no self-love. I think the biggest thing was, I thought of myself as just a swimmer, and nobody else. ... I was lost, pushing a lot people out of my life — people that I wanted and needed in my life. I was running and escaping from whatever it was I was running from.” — Michael Phelps, on living with mental illness

23. Actress Jenifer Lewis talked about how the AIDS epidemic led her to realize she needed help.

Photo by Jean Baptiste LaCroix/AFP/Getty Images.

"Sometimes I suspected that something was not quite right. Especially during the time when the AIDS epidemic was at its height and my grief was pretty much out of control. No one was talking about bipolar disorder and mental illness back then. I had lost so many friends and loved ones. My spiral into depression was overwhelming; I could not function. That’s when I couldn’t ignore the fact that something was wrong anymore.” — Jenifer Lewis, on living with bipolar disorder

24. Singer Adele highlighted why not each form of mental illness manifests the same way in every person.

Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP.

"My knowledge of postpartum [depression] — or post-natal, as we call it in England — is that you don’t want to be with your child; you’re worried you might hurt your child; you’re worried you weren’t doing a good job. But I was obsessed with my child. I felt very inadequate; I felt like I’d made the worst decision of my life. ... It can come in many different forms." — Adele, on living with postpartum depression

25. Actor Jared Padalecki launched a new "I Am Enough" campaign, selling shirts to support initiatives that fight depression and self-harm.

Photo by Chris Frawley/Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. via Getty Images.

“I am enough. And you are enough. ... I know I can keep fighting and I know that I’m trying to love myself, but sometimes you feel like you’re not enough. So this message is helping me kind of understand that I am enough — just the way I was made.” — Jared Padalecki, on living with depression

26. Actress Amanda Seyfried nailed why we should be treating mental illness just as seriously as any other disease or condition.

Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images for cle de peau BEAUTE.

"I’m on [antidepressant] Lexapro, and I’ll never get off of it. I’ve been on it since I was 19, so 11 years. I’m on the lowest dose. I don’t see the point of getting off of it. Whether it’s placebo or not, I don’t want to risk it. And what are you fighting against? Just the stigma of using a tool? A mental illness is a thing that people cast in a different category [from other illnesses], but I don’t think it is. It should be taken as seriously as anything else." — Amanda Seyfried, on living with anxiety and depression

27. Musical artist Keke Palmer opened up about how her own mental illness postponed the release of a new album.

Photo by Kimberly White/Getty Images for Glamour.

“I stopped trying all together because I allowed people to make me believe that being an artist meant having big budget music videos and big record producers backing you. When in reality, all being an artist means is to be fearless in your creative pursuits. My anxiety, caused by the habit of unconsciously holding my breath, coupled with the stress of my personal life at that time created a lot of hard years of depression for me.” — Keke Palmer, on living with anxiety

28. Actress Catherine Zeta-Jones said she's in a good place right now, thanks to identifying her struggle and finding the help that was right for her.

Photo by Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images.

"Finding out that it was called something was the best thing that ever happened to me! The fact that there was a name for my emotions and that a professional could talk me through my symptoms was very liberating. There are amazing highs and very low lows. My goal is to be consistently in the middle. I’m in a very good place right now." — Catherine Zeta-Jones, on living with bipolar disorder

29. Actor Devon Murray used World Mental Health Day to share his own ups and downs with fans on Twitter.

Photo by Scott Gries/Getty Images.

"I've been battling depression in silence for ten years and only recently spoke about it and [it] has made a huge difference. I had suicidal thoughts this year and that was the kick up the arse that I needed! Open up, talk to people. If you suspect a friend or family member is suffering in silence [reach out] to them. Let them know you care." — Devon Murray, on living with depression

30. Musical artist Jade Thirlwall discussed a dark time in her life that looked picture-perfect from afar.

Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images for Sony Pictures.

"My periods stopped and things were getting out of control, but I don't think I really cared about what was happening to me. I felt so depressed at the time that I just wanted to waste away and disappear. ... It should have been a really happy time — my career was successful, 'Black Magic' was doing well, and we were traveling and performing. On the surface I was happy, but inside I felt broken." — Jade Thirlwall, on battling anorexia

31. Musician Ellie Goulding explained how her panic attacks often came at the worst possible times.

Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images.

"I was skeptical [of going to therapy] at first, because I’d never had therapy, but not being able to leave the house was so debilitating. And this was when my career was really taking off. My surroundings would trigger a panic attack, so I couldn’t go to the studio unless I was lying down in the car with a pillow over my face. I used to beat myself up about it." — Ellie Goulding, on living with anxiety and facing panic attacks

Many celebrities have helped bring the conversation around mental health into the mainstream. But it's on us to make the real change happen.

“While it’s amazing to have celebrities out there blazing trails and introducing a radical new transparency," Harvey notes, "the most important thing is that individual sufferers communicate with their everyday connections. If we really want to make an impact on stigma, it can’t just be a headline."

If you need help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1‑800‑273‑TALK (8255). If you want to learn more about mental illness, visit the National Alliance on Mental Health.

Images courtesy of Letters of Love
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When Grace Berbig was 7 years old, her mom was diagnosed with leukemia, a cancer of the body’s blood-forming tissues. Being so young, Grace didn’t know what cancer was or why her mother was suddenly living in the hospital. But she did know this: that while her mom was in the hospital, she would always be assured that her family was thinking of her, supporting her and loving her every step of her journey.

Nearly every day, Grace and her two younger sisters would hand-make cards and fill them with drawings and messages of love, which their mother would hang all over the walls of her hospital room. These cherished letters brought immeasurable peace and joy to their mom during her sickness. Sadly, when Grace was just 10 years old, her mother lost her battle with cancer.“

Image courtesy of Letters of Love

Losing my mom put the world in a completely different perspective for me,” Grace says. “I realized that you never know when someone could leave you, so you have to love the people you love with your whole heart, every day.”

Grace’s father was instrumental in helping in the healing process of his daughters. “I distinctly remember my dad constantly reminding my two little sisters, Bella and Sophie, and I that happiness is a choice, and it was now our job to turn this heartbreaking event in our life into something positive.”

When she got to high school, Grace became involved in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and a handful of other organizations. But she never felt like she was doing enough.

“I wanted to create an opportunity for people to help beyond donating money, and one that anyone could be a part of, no matter their financial status.”

In October 2018, Grace started Letters of Love, a club at her high school in Long Lake, Minnesota, to emotionally support children battling cancer and other serious illnesses through letter-writing and craft-making.


Image courtesy of Letters of Love

Much to her surprise, more than 100 students showed up for the first club meeting. From then on, Letters of Love grew so fast that during her senior year in high school, Grace had to start a GoFundMe to help cover the cost of card-making materials.

Speaking about her nonprofit today, Grace says, “I can’t find enough words to explain how blessed I feel to have this organization. Beyond the amount of kids and families we are able to support, it allows me to feel so much closer and more connected to my mom.”

Since its inception, Letters of Love has grown to more than 25 clubs with more than 1,000 members providing emotional support to more than 60,000 patients in children’s hospitals around the world. And in the process it has become a full-time job for Grace.

“I do everything from training volunteers and club ambassadors, paying bills, designing merchandise, preparing financial predictions and overviews, applying for grants, to going through each and every card ensuring they are appropriate to send out to hospitals.”

Image courtesy of Letters of Love

In addition to running Letters of Love, Grace and her small team must also contend with the emotions inherent in their line of work.

“There have been many, many tears cried,” she says. “Working to support children who are battling cancer and other serious and sometimes chronic illnesses can absolutely be extremely difficult mentally. I feel so blessed to be an organization that focuses solely on bringing joy to these children, though. We do everything we can to simply put a smile on their face, and ensure they know that they are so loved, so strong, and so supported by people all around the world.”

Image courtesy of Letters of Love

Letters of Love has been particularly instrumental in offering emotional support to children who have been unable to see friends and family due to COVID-19. A video campaign in the summer of 2021 even saw members of the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings and the NHL’s Minnesota Wild offer short videos of hope and encouragement to affected children.

Grace is currently taking a gap year before she starts college so she can focus on growing Letters of Love as well as to work on various related projects, including the publication of a children’s book.

“The goal of the book is to teach children the immense impact that small acts of kindness can have, how to treat their peers who may be diagnosed with disabilities or illness, and how they are never too young to change the world,” she says.

Since she was 10, Grace has kept memories of her mother close to her, as a source of love and inspiration in her life and in the work she does with Letters of Love.

Image courtesy of Grace Berbig

“When I lost my mom, I felt like a section of my heart went with her, so ever since, I have been filling that piece with love and compassion towards others. Her smile and joy were infectious, and I try to mirror that in myself and touch people’s hearts as she did.”

For more information visit Letters of Love.

Please donate to Grace’s GoFundMe and help Letters of Love to expand, publish a children’s book and continue to reach more children in hospitals around the world.

Upworthy is sharing this letter from Myra Sack on the anniversary of the passing of her daughter Havi Lev Goldstein. Loss affects everyone differently and nothing can prepare us for the loss of a young child. But as this letter beautifully demonstrates, grief is not something to be ignored or denied. We hope the honest words and feelings shared below can help you or someone you know who is processing grief of their own. The original letter begins below:


Dear Beauty,

Time is crawling to January 20th, the one-year anniversary of the day you took your final breath on my chest in our bed. We had a dance party the night before. Your posse came over. Aunts, uncles, grandparents, closest friends, and your loving nanny Tia. We sat in the warm kitchen with music on and passed you from one set of arms to another. Everyone wanted one last dance with you. We didn’t mess around with only slow songs. You danced to Havana and Danza Kuduro, too. Somehow, you mustered the energy to sway and rock with each of us, despite not having had anything to eat or drink for six days. That night, January 19th, we laughed and cried and sang and danced. And we held each other. We let our snot and our tears rest on each other’s shoulders; we didn’t wipe any of them away. We ate ice cream after dinner, as we do every night. And on this night, we rubbed a little bit of fresh mint chocolate chip against your lips. Maybe you’d taste the sweetness.

Reggaeton and country music. Blueberry pancakes and ice cream. Deep, long sobs and outbursts of real, raw laughter. Conversations about what our relationships mean to each other and why we are on this earth.


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Images courtesy of AFutureSuperhero and Friends and Balance Dance Project
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The day was scorching hot, but the weather wasn’t going to stop a Star Wars Stormtrooper from handing out school supplies to a long line of eager children. “You guys don’t have anything illegal back there - any droids or anything?” the Stormtrooper asks, making sure he was safe from enemies before handing over a colorful backpack to a smiling boy.

The man inside the costume is Yuri Williams, founder of AFutureSuperhero And Friends, a Los Angeles nonprofit that uplifts and inspires marginalized people with small acts of kindness.

Yuri’s organization is one of four inaugural grant winners from the Upworthy Kindness Fund, a joint initiative between Upworthy and GoFundMe that celebrates kindness and everyday actions inspired by the best of humanity. This year, the Upworthy Kindness Fund is giving $100,000 to grassroots changemakers across the world.

To apply, campaign organizers simply tell Upworthy how their kindness project is making a difference. Between now and the end of 2021, each accepted individual or organization will receive $500 towards an existing GoFundMe and a shout-out on Upworthy.

Meet the first four winners:

1: Balance Dance Project: This studio aims to bring accessible dance to all in the Sacramento, CA area. Lead fundraiser Miranda Macias says many dancers spend hours a day at Balance practicing contemporary, lyrical, hip-hop, and ballet. Balance started a GoFundMe to raise money to cover tuition for dancers from low-income communities, buy dance team uniforms, and update its facility. The $500 contribution from the Kindness Fund nudged Balance closer to its $5,000 goal.

2: Citizens of the World Mar Vista Robotics Team: In Los Angeles, middle school teacher James Pike is introducing his students to the field of robotics via a Lego-building team dedicated to solving real-world problems.

James started a GoFundMe to crowdfund supplies for his students’ team ahead of the First Lego League, a school-against-school matchup that includes robotics competitions. The team, James explained, needed help to cover half the cost of the pricey $4,000 robotics kit. Thanks to help from the Upworthy Kindness Fund and the generosity of the Citizens of the World Middle School community, the team exceeded its initial fundraising goal.

Citizens of the World Mar Vista Robotics Team video update youtu.be

3: Black Fluidity Tattoo Club: Kiara Mills and Tann Parker want to fix a big problem in the tattoo industry: there are too few Black tattoo artists. To tackle the issue, the duo founded the Black Fluidity Tattoo Club to inspire and support Black tattooers. While the Brooklyn organization is open to any Black person, Kiara and Tann specifically want to encourage dark-skinned artists to train in an affirming space among people with similar identities.

To make room for newcomers, the club recently moved into a larger studio with a third station for apprentices or guest artists. Unlike a traditional fundraiser that supports the organization exclusively, Black Fluidity Tattoo Club will distribute proceeds from GoFundMe directly to emerging Black tattoo artists who are starting their own businesses. The small grants, supported in part with a $500 contribution from the Upworthy Kindness Fund, will go towards artists’ equipment, supplies, furnishings, and other start-up costs.

4: AFutureSuperhero And Friends’ “Hope For The Holidays”: Founder Yuri Williams is fundraising for a holiday trip to spread cheer to people in need across all fifty states.

Along with collaborator Rodney Smith Jr., Yuri will be handing out gifts to children, adults, and animals dressed as a Star Wars’ Stormtrooper, Spiderman, Deadpool, and other movie or comic book characters. Starting this month, the crew will be visiting children with disabilities or serious illnesses, bringing leashes and toys to animal shelters for people taking home a new pet, and spreading blessings to unhoused people—all while in superhero costume. This will be the third time Yuri and his nonprofit have taken this journey.

AFutureSuperhero started a GoFundMe in July to cover the cost of gifts as well as travel expenses like hotels and rental cars. To help the nonprofit reach its $15,000 goal, the Upworthy Kindness Fund contributed $500 towards this good cause.

Think you qualify for the fund? Tell us how you’re bringing kindness to your community. Grants will be awarded on a rolling basis from now through the end of 2021. For questions and more information, please check out our FAQ's and the Kindness Toolkit for resources on how to start your own kindness fundraiser.

Cellist Cremaine Booker's performance of Faure's "Pavane" is as impressive as it is beautiful.

Music might be the closest thing the world has to real magic. Music has the ability to transform any atmosphere in seconds, simply with the sounds of a few notes. It can be simple—one instrument playing single notes like raindrops—or a complex symphony of melodies and harmonies, swirling and crashing like waves from dozens of instruments. Certain rhythms can make us spontaneously dance and certain chord progressions can make us cry.

Music is an art, a science, a language and a decidedly human endeavor. People have made music throughout history, in every culture on every continent. Over time, people have perfected the crafting of instruments and passed along the knowledge of how to play them, so every time we see someone playing music, we're seeing the history of humanity culminated in their craft. It's truly an amazing thing.

The pandemic threw a wrench into seeing live musicians for a good chunk of time, and even now, live performances are limited. Thankfully, we have technology that makes it easier for musicians to collaborate and perform with one another virtually—and also makes it easier for people to create "group" performances all by themselves.

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The airplane graveyard that 3 families call home is the subject of a stunning photo series.

From the skies to the ground, these airplanes continue to serve a purpose.

This article originally appeared on 09.18.15


What happens to airplanes after they're no longer fit to roam the skies?


An abandoned 747 rests in a Bangkok lot. Photo by Taylor Weidman/Getty Images.

Decommissioned planes are often stripped and sold for parts, with the remains finding a new home in what is sometimes referred to as an "airplane boneyard" or "graveyard." Around the world, these graveyards exist; they're made up of large, empty lots and tons of scrap metal.

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