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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.

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

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.

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Frito-Lay

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This school year is unlike any other. Frito-Lay knew the critical need to ensure children have enough food and resources to succeed. The company quickly pivoted to expand its partnership with Feed the Children, a leading nonprofit focused on alleviating childhood hunger, to create the "Building the Future Together" program to provide shelf-stable food to supplement more than a quarter-million meals and distribute 500,000 pantry staples, school supplies, snacks, books, hand sanitizer, and personal care items to schools in underserved communities.

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We have seen some glimmers of hope from both human innovation and nature itself, however. In 2016, a bacteria that evolved with the ability to break down plastic was discovered in a Japanese waste site. Two years later, scientists managed to engineer the mutant plastic-eating enzyme they called PETase—named for polyethylene terephthalate, the most common plastic found in bottles and food packaging—in a lab.

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Learn more on how cities are taking action: c40.org/divest-invest


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Sometimes, what's best is hard to discern. Sometimes it's absolutely not.

Such was the case this week when a parent at a St. Louis elementary school complained in a Facebook group about a book that was read to her 7-year-old. The parent wrote:

"Anyone else check out the read a loud book on Canvas for 2nd grade today? Ron's Big Mission was the book that was read out loud to my 7 year old. I caught this after she watched it bc I was working with my 3rd grader. I have called my daughters school. Parents, we have to preview what we are letting the kids see on there."

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via DanielandDavid2 / Instagram

Editor's Note: We used "black" in lowercase for our headline and the body of this story in accordance with emerging guidelines from the Associated Press and other trusted news outlets who are using uppercase "Black" in reference to American descendants of the diaspora of individuals forcibly brought from Africa as slaves. As part of our ongoing efforts to be transparent and communicate choices with our readership, we've included this note for clarity. The original story begins below.

On February 26, 2019, Stacy and Babajide Omirin of Lagos, Nigeria got quite the shock. When Stacy delivered identical twins through C-section one came out black and the other, white.

The parents knew they were having identical twins and expected them to look exactly the same. But one has a white-looking complexion and golden, wavy hair.

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