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In 2014, international relief organization Save the Children released video about the struggles of child refugees that caught the world's attention — by employing an ingenious twist.

Photo by Save the Children/YouTube.


The 90-second film transplants the Syrian Civil War to the U.K., and the "child refugee" it follows is a young, middle-class British girl.

Photo by Save the Children/YouTube.

In less than two minutes, we watch the girl — whose name we never learn — go from living a comfortable, familiar life to having that life brutally upended, her home abandoned, and her family split up by an (imaginary) war.

Photo by Save the Children/YouTube.

As of May 11, 2016, the video had been viewed more than 53 million times.

As we leave her, celebrating her birthday in a medical tent, we're left wondering what will happen to her.

Photo by Save the Children/YouTube.

Last week, Save the Children released a follow-up short film that answers that question — and it's predictably gut-wrenching.

In the two years since we last checked in with the girl, she's been forced to flee her country in a raft:

GIFs via Save the Children/YouTube.

Herded into strange, refugee camps...

Gif by Save the Children/YouTube.

Experienced racism and xenophobia...

And, ultimately, left completely alone with only an anonymous aid worker to care for her.

Since 2011, nearly 5 million people have fled Syria. 2 million of them are children.

These children are often forced to travel without their families, leaving them unprotected and at risk for exploitation.

In May, CBS News reported that dozens of Syrian child refugees in Turkey are being forced to labor long hours in textile factories.

Why is it so hard to get people to care about the refugee crisis?

Recent studies suggest that humans frequently struggle with inter-group empathy — feeling genuine concern for those we perceive not to be like us.

A Syrian refugee child waits to cross the border into Jordan. Photo by Khalil Mazraawi/Getty Images.

The rash of closed borders and dismissals across Europe and in the U.S. would seem to indicate that there are indeed many in those places who consider Syrians "not us."

With this new video, Save the Children appears to be betting that it's easier to get an audience to empathize with the plight of a (fictional) European girl in danger and to draw the connection to the (non-fictional) refugee crisis from there.

The organization may very well be right (witness the difference in coverage between March's bombings in Belgium and May's deadly terrorist attack in Baghdad).

Most refugees speak a different language than most Europeans and Americans do. Many observe a different religion.

Photo by Aris Messinis/Getty Images.

That an organization like Save the Children would need to portray their struggles via a child who looks similar with experiences that are recognizable to the average Westerner in order to jolt folks into action is heartbreaking in its own right.

But you know what?

Photo by Save the Children/YouTube.

We’re already too far into this crisis to worry about how we get people to care.

What matters is that people do.

And that we do something to help those in need.

You can read more about Save the Children's efforts to address the Syrian refugee crisis here.

All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

True

We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

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Woman left at the altar by her fiance decided to 'turn the day around’ and have a wedding anyway

'I didn’t want to remember the day as complete sadness.'

via Pixabay

The show must go on… and more power to her.

There are few things that feel more awful than being stranded at the altar by your spouse-to-be. That’s why people are cheering on Kayley Stead, 27, from the U.K. for turning a day of extreme disappointment into a party for her friends, family and most importantly, herself.

According to a report in The Metro, on Thursday, September 15, Stead woke up in an Airbnb with her bridemaids, having no idea that her fiance, Kallum Norton, 24, had run off early that morning. The word got to Stead’s bridesmaids at around 7 a.m. the day of the wedding.

“[A groomsman] called one of the maids of honor to explain that the groom had ‘gone.’ We were told he had left the caravan they were staying at in Oxwich Bay (the venue) at 12:30 a.m. to visit his family, who were staying in another caravan nearby and hadn’t returned. When they woke in the morning, he was not there and his car had gone,” Jordie Cullen wrote on a GoFundMe page.

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Pop Culture

As people mourn the death of Coolio, a video resurfaced showing just how cool he was

Not many college kids get to say Coolio performed 'Gangsta's Paradise' in their dorm room.

As people mourn the death of Coolio, resurfaced video show how cool he was.

There aren't too many people who haven't heard the song "Gangsta's Paradise" by Coolio. It quickly climbed the charts after it was used in the soundtrack of the movie "Dangerous Minds" and brings nostalgia anytime it comes on the radio. Following Coolio's unexpected death, it's no wonder the song is being played again. But one user had a unique experience with the late rapper, and his 2013 video has resurfaced on YouTube showing Coolio hanging out with the group of England's University of Central Lancashire students in their dorm room.

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via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


Dr. Daniel Mansfield and his team at the University of New South Wales in Australia have just made an incredible discovery. While studying a 3,700-year-old tablet from the ancient civilization of Babylon, they found evidence that the Babylonians were doing something astounding: trigonometry!

Most historians have credited the Greeks with creating the study of triangles' sides and angles, but this tablet presents indisputable evidence that the Babylonians were using the technique 1,500 years before the Greeks ever were.


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