More

Remember that pizzeria that was feeding the homeless? See what happened when you shared their story.

If you were one of many who shared this story, here's what you helped make possible.

Remember that pizzeria that was feeding the homeless? See what happened when you shared their story.

You may recall the story of Rosa's Fresh Pizza from the first time we covered it back in March 2015.

The Philadelphia-based eatery is making sure kindness isn't just a slogan in the City of Brotherly Love. They invite customers to pay it forward by pre-purchasing $1 slices of pizza for homeless patrons.

And people happily chip in.


Our interview with Mason Wartman, owner of Rosa's, and some of his customers was viewed over 35 million times on Facebook alone.

And you, Internet, took a page out of the pay-it-forward playbook, sharing the story over 800,000 times!

Scroll down to watch the interview.

Since then, Wartman says, business at Rosa's has been picking up steam.

His email update four months later had us smiling ear-to-ear:

"It has been more than three months since you posted our story on Upworthy. It's been a CRAZY past couple months, but the business is both making more money and helping WAY more people than ever before."
—Mason Wartman

As of June 2015...

  • Rosa's has given away more than 23,000 slices (a 130% increase in just four months!) and is providing meals free of charge to up to 100 people on any given day.
  • The uptick in business means Wartman needs more employees. And true to Rosa's pay-it-forward spirit, he's hiring through agencies that connect homeless folks with jobs.
  • And they've even started selling official Rosa's apparel, which features designs by homeless artists. Half of all the revenue goes right back to supporting Philly's homeless community through pay-it-forward pizza. So far, T-shirt sales have funded a full 10% of donated slices.

"Making life a little easier to BEAR, one slice at a time!" Photos courtesy of Mason Wartman.

That's why theirs is a story worth sharing over and over again.

Not only does it generate more attention for this really great program (which in turn generates more food for the homeless), but it sends a powerful and unexpected message:

Business can thrive on kindness.

If this is the first time you're hearing about Rosa's, check out our interview with Wartman. And of course, pay it forward and pass it on.

Photo courtesy of Macy's
True

Macy's and Girls Inc. believe that all girls deserve to be safe, supported, and valued. However, racial disparities continue to exist for young people when it comes to education levels, employment, and opportunities for growth. Add to that the gender divide, and it's clear to see why it's important for girls of color to have access to mentors who can equip them with the tools needed to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers.

Anissa Rivera is one of those mentors. Rivera is a recent Program Manager at the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc., a nonprofit focusing on the holistic development of girls ages 5-18. The goal of the organization is to provide a safe space for girls to develop long-lasting mentoring relationships and build the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to thrive now and as adults.

Rivera spent years of her career working within the themes of self and community empowerment with young people — encouraging them to tap into their full potential. Her passion for youth development and female empowerment eventually led her to Girls Inc., where she served as an agent of positive change helping to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold.

Photo courtesy of Macy's

Inspiring young women from all backgrounds is why Macy's has continued to partner with Girls Inc. for the second year in a row. The partnership will support mentoring programming that offers girls career readiness, college preparation, financial literacy, and more. Last year, Macy's raised over $1.3M for Girls Inc. in support of this program along with their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programming for more than 26,000 girls. Studies show that girls who participated are more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, score higher on standardized math tests, and be more equipped for college and campus life.

Thanks to mentors like Rivera, girls across the country have the tools they need to excel in school and the confidence to change the world. With your help, we can give even more girls the opportunity to rise up. Throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases or donate online to support Girls Inc. at Macys.com/MacysGives.

Who runs the world? Girls!

Mark Ruffalo at Comic Con/Gage Skidmore and screenshot via YouTube

Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Garner in '13 Going on 30'

The early 2000s were a golden age for Hollywood rom-coms. Think of classics like "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days," "Bridget Jones' Diary," "Love Actually" and, of course, "13 Going on 30," starring Jennifer Garner and pre-Marvel Mark Ruffalo. Who wouldn't fawn over their clumsy yet endearing chemistry in the film's iconic "Thriller" dance sequence.

And to think, the world was nearly deprived of such a performance.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo courtesy of Macy's
True

Did you know that girls who are encouraged to discover and develop their strengths tend to be more likely to achieve their goals? It's true. The question, however, is how to encourage girls to develop self-confidence and grow up healthy, educated, and independent.

The answer lies in Girls Inc., a national nonprofit serving girls ages 5-18 in more than 350 cities across North America. Since first forming in 1864 to serve girls and young women who were experiencing upheaval in the aftermath of the Civil War, they've been on a mission to inspire girls to kick butt and step into leadership roles — today and in the future.

This is why Macy's has committed to partnering with Girls Inc. and making it easy to support their mission. In a national campaign running throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases to the nearest dollar or donate online to support Girls Inc. and empower girls throughout the country.


Kaylin St. Victor, a senior at Brentwood High School in New York, is one of those girls. She became involved in the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc. when she was in 9th grade, quickly becoming a role model for her peers.

Photo courtesy of Macy's

Within her first year in the organization, she bravely took on speaking opportunities and participated in several summer programs focused on advocacy, leadership, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). "The women that I met each have a story that inspires me to become a better person than I was yesterday," said St. Victor. She credits her time at Girls Inc. with making her stronger and more comfortable in her own skin — confidence that directly translates to high achievement in education and the workforce.

In 2020, Macy's helped raise $1.3 million in support of their STEM and college and career readiness programming for more than 26,000 girls. In fact, according to a recent study, Girls Inc. girls are significantly more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, to be interested in STEM careers, and to perform better on standardized math tests.

Keep Reading Show less