For months, this girl painted a frightening picture of Aleppo. Today, she's finally safe.

Bana al-Abed is safe, but there are still others who need our help.

There's some good news from Aleppo: 7-year-old Bana al-Abed and her family have been safely evacuated out of the Syrian city.

Over the course of the past several months, Bana and her mother Fatemah have live-tweeted the reality of life in a war zone. With more than 340,000 followers, Bana's Twitter account has helped put a face to the horrors facing the city.

Last week, Bana's followers watched as she and her mother tweeted final messages and waited for the end. Their fate uncertain, supporters braced for the worst.


On Monday morning, it was reported that Bana and her family made it out of East Aleppo alive, something she frequently doubted would ever happen.

Bana and Fatemah. Photo by Qasioun News Agency via AP

While Bana's safety will bring comfort to her many fans and supporters, we can't forget those who remain trapped in the conflict.

The Syrian civil war has killed an estimated 470,000 people and left 11 million Syrian citizens displaced. Nearly 500,000 children just like Bana live in portions of Syria under threat, with nearly 100,000 in East Aleppo. What was once their home has been reduced to rubble, a chewed-up battlefield.

With millions of lives hanging in the balance, and the rest of the world so seemingly slow to help, it's easy to feel as though there's nothing you can do on an individual level for those who remain. Luckily, that's not quite the case.

Bana and her brother near their home in October. Photo by Thaer Mohammed/AFP/Getty Images.

There are a number of organizations working to help the people of Aleppo — and they could really use all of our support.

If you're looking for a way to help, you might want to consider making a donation to groups like the White Helmets, Doctors Without Borders, the Syrian American Medical Society, International Rescue Committee, and Save the Children. There's also refugee support organizations like the UN Refugee Agency, Questscope, and the Migrant Offshore Aid Station. Upworthy recently put together an overview of what these organizations do and how you can support them that can be found here.

Even if you're not in a position to financially back these organizations, there are other things you can do to show support for those affected by the crisis. Whether it's something as simple as sharing stories like Bana's and those about other refugees or by organizing or attending protests, these small acts are more than symbolic.

Bana and her brother in October. Photo by Thaer Mohammed/AFP/Getty Images.

Bana has made it out alive, but her struggle is far from over. With all of our help, we can fight back against this atrocity.

No 7-year-old should fear for her life. No 7-year-old should have to stand by while missiles and bombs destroy her home. No 7-year-old should ever be made to feel that the world has forgotten her. Let's not forget the others who still need our help.

More


Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature

As a child, Dr. Sangeeta Bhatia's parents didn't ask her what she wanted to be when she grew up. Instead, her father would ask, "Are you going to be a doctor? Are you going to be an engineer? Or are you going to be an entrepreneur?"

Little did he know that she would successfully become all three: an award-winning biomedical and mechanical engineer who performs cutting-edge medical research and has started multiple companies.

Bhatia holds an M.D. from Harvard University, an M.S. in mechanical engineering from MIT, and a PhD in biomedical engineering from MIT. Bhatia, a Wilson professor of engineering at MIT, is currently serving as director of the Marble Center for Cancer Nanomedicine, where she's working on nanotechnology targeting enzymes in cancer cells. This would allow cancer screenings to be done with a simple urine test.

Bhatia owes much of her impressive career to her family. Her parents were refugees who met in graduate school in India; in fact, she says her mom was the first woman to earn an MBA in the country. The couple immigrated to the U.S. in the 1960s, started a family, and worked hard to give their two daughters the best opportunities.

"They made enormous sacrifices to pick a town with great public schools and really push us to excel the whole way," Bhatia says. "They really believed in us, but they expected excellence. The story I like to tell about my dad is like, if you brought home a 96 on a math test, the response would be, 'What'd you get wrong?'"

Keep Reading Show less
Packard Foundation
True

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Amy Johnson

The first day of school can be both exciting and scary at the same time — especially if it's your first day ever, as was the case for a nervous four-year-old in Wisconsin. But with a little help from a kind bus driver, he was able to get over his fear.

Axel was "super excited" waiting for the bus in Augusta with his mom, Amy Johnson, until it came time to actually get on.

"He was all smiles when he saw me around the corner and I started to slow down and that's when you could see his face start to change," his bus driver, Isabel "Izzy" Lane, told WEAU.

The scared boy wouldn't get on the bus without help from his mom, so she picked him up and carried him aboard, trying to give him a pep talk.

"He started to cling to me and I told him, 'Buddy, you got this and will have so much fun!'" Johnson told Fox 7.

Keep Reading Show less
Most Shared