5-year-old boys are given the same restrictions girls face around the world. They're not pleased.
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Gates Foundation

You never know what will come out of a 5-year-old's mouth.

Kids can be unpredictable little creatures. Their imaginations run wild, and they can be so curious, so fearless, and so brutally honest that it catches you off guard.

They can also be so on point.


A group of kindergarten boys were asked some important questions.

Global Citizen went to a classroom in Brooklyn, New York, to get the perspective of some young boys. It started out fairly normal:

"What do you want to be when you grow up?"



Solid choices, boys. Stay in school. GIFs via Global Citizen.

But then it took a turn. The questions that followed put them in a different situation — a situation that many young girls face around the world. They flipped the "roles" of boys and girls:

"What if I told you that only your sister was allowed to play football and learn math and become a president. And you weren't allowed to do that because you are a boy?"



Yeah, that's not fair. Thanks for noticing! GIFs via Global Citizen.

This social experiment touches on an important point: Millions of girls aren't allowed to do the things boys can do simply because they're girls.

According to The Girl Effect, 31 million girls of primary school age around the world aren't in school. 17 million of them are expected never to enter.

There are many reasons for this: They are forced into child marriages, they become young mothers, they are expected to work and to be at home, their culture doesn't see them as equal to boys, and more. Whatever the case, this gender divide has serious consequences for our world.

What kind of consequences? In Bangladesh, for example, $69 billion potentially could be added to the national income if just one million girls were able to delay marriage and becoming young mothers. $69 billion. And that's just one country.

Restrictions on girls keep them from reaching their full potential — but we're seeing progress.

While the numbers above might seem a bit overwhelming, we are seeing improvements in the treatment of girls and women through the work of many organizations and governments and by our next generation being pretty dang inclusive.

When boys like the ones in this kindergarten class view girls as their equals, it's a step toward a more equal world!

Right on, little man. I like where your head's at. GIF via Global Citizen.

These boys think girls should have the same opportunities as they do.

If you do too, consider sharing this or taking action with Global Citizen.

via Good Morning America

Anyone who's an educator knows that teaching is about a lot more than a paycheck. "Teaching is not a job, but a way of life, a lens by which I see the world, and I can't imagine a life that did not include the ups and downs of changing and being changed by other people," Amber Chandler writes in Education Week.

So it's no surprise that Kelly Klein, 54, who's taught at Falcon Heights Elementary in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, for the past 32 years still teaches her kindergarten class even as she is being treated for stage-3 ovarian cancer.

Her class is learning remotely due to the COIVD-19 pandemic, so she is able to continue doing what she loves from her computer at M Health Fairview Lakes Medical Center in Wyoming, Minnesota, even while undergoing chemotherapy.

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.

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Starbucks Upstanders Season 2

27 years ago, Debbie Baigrie was shot in the face during an attempted robbery. Her assailant was a 13-year-old boy.

Ian Manuel was the youngest of three boys who threatened Baigrie that night, but despite his age, he was the one holding the gun.

Ian Manuel in grade school. All photos provided by Starbucks.

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In the autumn of 1939, Chiune Sugihara was sent to Lithuania to open the first Japanese consulate there. His job was to keep tabs on and gather information about Japan's ally, Germany. Meanwhile, in neighboring Poland, Nazi tanks had already begun to roll in, causing Jewish refugees to flee into the small country.

When the Soviet Union invaded Lithuania in June of 1940, scores of Jews flooded the Japanese consulate, seeking transit visas to be able to escape to a safety through Japan. Overwhelmed by the requests, Sugihara reached out to the foreign ministry in Tokyo for guidance and was told that no one without proper paperwork should be issued a visa—a limitation that would have ruled out nearly all of the refugees seeking his help.

Sugihara faced a life-changing choice. He could obey the government and leave the Jews in Lithuania to their fate, or he could disobey orders and face disgrace and the loss of his job, if not more severe punishments from his superiors.

According to the Jewish Virtual Library, Sugihara was fond of saying, "I may have to disobey my government, but if I don't, I would be disobeying God." Sugihara decided it was worth it to risk his livelihood and good standing with the Japanese government to give the Jews at his doorstep a fighting chance, so he started issuing Japanese transit visas to any refugee who needed one, regardless of their eligibility.

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