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A Celebrity's Ice Bucket Challenge Takes An Unexpected Turn That I Want Everyone To See

Like a lot of us at this point, actor and comedian Orlando Jones was nominated to take the ice bucket challenge. He dutifully accepted and agreed to make a donation in support of ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) treatment and research. But when he turns that bucket up, you'll see that he has another deadly "disease" in mind.

A Celebrity's Ice Bucket Challenge Takes An Unexpected Turn That I Want Everyone To See

The ice bucket challenge is a truly awesome phenomenon, and it has generated bookoos of attention and donations for a really important cause. It wasn't originally about ALS, but advocates saw the perfect wave and smartly chose to ride it.

Jones made this video in the same spirit:


I wanted to do what ALS did, co-opt a viral thing and make it my own, to talk about the insanity happening in Ferguson and just around the world. ... It's not the first time I've seen a city in the world look like a war zone, and to be fair, where was my voice then? So for me, it was like, I can no longer be silent.

The video closes with Jones issuing a challenge to everyone who sees it: "To listen without prejudice. To love without limits. And to reverse the hate."

Now that may not be as simple as dumping a bucket of ice water — or shell casings — on our heads, but it's as worthy an undertaking as there ever were.

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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.