Heroes

It's A Parent's Worst Nightmare. And A Kid's. Is Your Family Ready?

You've probably thought about what your family would do if a hurricane, earthquake, or proletariat uprising disrupted your life. Maybe you've imagined yourself huddled with your family in the bathtub, waiting for storm winds to calm. Or helping your kids shove clothes into a duffel bag as the Emergency Broadcast System warns you that "this is not a test." Or saving your babies from zombies with only your guts and a tire iron.But what if your family isn't holed up in the bomb shelter together? Save the Children estimates that in the United States, 68 million children are separated from their parents, in school or day care, every workday. Maybe it's time to stop the daydream, get with your kids, and make a plan for how you'd get back together.

It's A Parent's Worst Nightmare. And A Kid's. Is Your Family Ready?

So ... now what? Save the Children offers this great checklist for parents to help you get ready for whatever might come your way. Make sure your kids know the plan. And share this with their friends' parents, too. The more people take a couple of minutes to think about this, the safer everyone will be.

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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.