ShelterBox could be vital in Italy right now. This is how you can help those in need.

There's no need to feel hopeless.

On Aug. 24, 2016, a 6.2-magnitude earthquake shook central Italy, claiming dozens of lives and causing mass destruction.

Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images.

Amatrice, a popular tourist destination, was devastated by the quake.

Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images.


"The town isn't here anymore," Mayor Sergio Pirozzi told the Associated Press.

"It was one of the most beautiful towns of Italy and now there's nothing left," a woman whose home was destroyed told AP. "I don't know what we'll do."

Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images.

Officials say at least 120 people have been killed, and rescuers are still struggling to help those in more remote areas.

Near the town of Accumoli, for instance, bulldozers, ambulances, and other aid equipment haven't been able to access affected areas because main roads have been blocked and are too dangerous to cross.

"They’re still very much at the beginning of their search and rescue operation," CNN's Fred Pleitgen reported Wednesday morning.  

Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images.

To make matters worse, shortly after Italy was rocked by devastation, an earthquake hit Myanmar, too.

The quake killed at least three and damaged ancient temples in the Southeast Asian country.

Photo Soe Moe Aung/AFP/Getty Images.

Italy and Myanmar need our help now more than ever.

There are many groups from around the world stepping up to do their part.

Photo by Marco Zeppetella/AFP/Getty Images.

One such group is ShelterBox.

The nonprofit provides pop-up emergency shelter and vital supplies like blankets, hats and gloves, and mosquito nets to people affected by natural disasters around the world.

Photo by ShelterBox, used with permission.

Photo by ShelterBox, used with permission.

While many aid groups provide resources such as food and medicine in the aftermath of devastation, safe and reliable shelter is often lacking in the critical stage between immediate assistance and long-term rebuilding efforts.

That's where ShelterBox is particularly helpful.

When disaster struck this morning, ShelterBox didn't hesitate to make its move.

Chris Alexander, the group's communications manager, said ShelterBox has an assessment team on the job that will work with affiliate groups in Milan to see if a response is feasible and needed at this point. The group is also monitoring the situation in Myanmar.

If ShelterBox can be of service, the group will provide resources to affected areas ASAP.

Josh Mohr, a member of ShelterBox's response team, said it's been incredible to work for a passionate group that makes a "very tangible impact" on the communities it serves.

"Seeing a family whose home and livelihood has been completely destroyed is heart-breaking," said Mohr, who's been deployed to four different countries since joining the response team in 2011.

"Being able to give them aid and the ability to reestablish their lives is an incredible feeling and one that is tough to explain."

Photo via Josh Mohr, used with permission.

There are many ways you can help out in the wake of these natural disasters.

If you're inspired to help out, you can learn more about these groups and their efforts at the links below:

Learn more and support efforts by organizations like ShelterBox.

The Italian Red Cross is proving vital help on the ground in affected areas.

Help Save the Children, operating now in Myanmar, provide aid.

La Stampa's emergency relief fund is providing assistance to victims of the quake in Italy.

Encouraging messages and ways to help those in need are going viral under the #PrayForItaly hashtag on Facebook and Twitter. Join the conversation.

And if you're worried about friends traveling in Italy — or maybe you're there and want to let loved ones know you're safe — use Facebook's Safety Check feature.

Italy and Myanmar, our thoughts are with you — and, more importantly, our actions to help you recover are, too.

Stay strong.

Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images.

More

On an old episode of "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in July 1992, Oprah put her audience through a social experiment that puts racism in a new light. Despite being nearly two decades old, it's as relevant today as ever.

She split the audience members into two groups based on their eye color. Those with brown eyes were given preferential treatment by getting to cut the line and given refreshments while they waited to be seated. Those with blue eyes were made to put on a green collar and wait in a crowd for two hours.

Staff were instructed to be extra polite to brown-eyed people and to discriminate against blue-eyed people. Her guest for that day's show was diversity expert Jane Elliott, who helped set up the experiment and played along, explaining that brown-eyed people were smarter than blue-eyed people.

Watch the video to see how this experiment plays out.

Oprah's Social Experiment on Her Audience www.youtube.com

Culture
via Cadbury

Cadbury has removed the words from its Dairy Milk chocolate bars in the U.K. to draw attention to a serious issue, senior loneliness.

On September 4, Cadbury released the limited-edition candy bars in supermarkets and for every one sold, the candy giant will donate 30p (37 cents) to Age UK, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for the elderly.

Cadbury was prompted to help the organization after it was revealed that 225,000 elderly people in the UK often go an entire week without speaking to another person.

Keep Reading Show less
Well Being

Young people today are facing what seems to be greater exposure to complex issues like mental health, bullying, and youth violence. As a result, teachers are required to be well-versed in far more than school curriculum to ensure students are prepared to face the world inside and outside of the classroom. Acting as more than teachers, but also mentors, counselors, and cheerleaders, they must be equipped with practical and relevant resources to help their students navigate some of the more complicated social issues – though access to such tools isn't always guaranteed.

Take Dr. Jackie Sanderlin, for example, who's worked in the education system for over 25 years, and as a teacher for seven. Entering the profession, she didn't anticipate how much influence a student's home life could affect her classroom, including "students who lived in foster homes" and "lacked parental support."

Dr. Jackie Sanderlin, who's worked in the education system for over 25 years.

Valerie Anglemyer, a middle school teacher with more than 13 years of experience, says it can be difficult to create engaging course work that's applicable to the challenges students face. "I think that sometimes, teachers don't know where to begin. Teachers are always looking for ways to make learning in their classrooms more relevant."

So what resources do teachers turn to in an increasingly fractured world? "Joining a professional learning network that supports and challenges thinking is one of the most impactful things that a teacher can do to support their own learning," Anglemyer says.

Valerie Anglemyer, a middle school teacher with more than 13 years of experience.

A new program for teachers that offers this network along with other resources is the WE Teachers Program, an initiative developed by Walgreens in partnership with ME to WE and Mental Health America. WE Teachers provides tools and resources, at no cost to teachers, looking for guidance around the social issues related to poverty, youth violence, mental health, bullying, and diversity and inclusion. Through online modules and trainings as well as a digital community, these resources help them address the critical issues their students face.

Jessica Mauritzen, a high school Spanish teacher, credits a network of support for providing her with new opportunities to enrich the learning experience for her students. "This past year was a year of awakening for me and through support… I realized that I was able to teach in a way that built up our community, our school, and our students, and supported them to become young leaders," she says.

With the new WE Teachers program, teachers can learn to identify the tough issues affecting their students, secure the tools needed to address them in a supportive manner, and help students become more socially-conscious, compassionate, and engaged citizens.

It's a potentially life-saving experience for students, and in turn, "a great gift for teachers," says Dr. Sanderlin.

"I wish I had the WE Teachers program when I was a teacher because it provides the online training and resources teachers need to begin to grapple with these critical social issues that plague our students every day," she adds.

In addition to the WE Teachers curriculum, the program features a WE Teachers Award to honor educators who go above and beyond in their classrooms. At least 500 teachers will be recognized and each will receive a $500 Walgreens gift card, which is the average amount teachers spend out-of-pocket on supplies annually. Teachers can be nominated or apply themselves. To learn more about the awards and how to nominate an amazing teacher, or sign up for access to the teacher resources available through WE Teachers, visit walgreens.com/metowe.

WE Teachers
True
Walgreens
via KGW-TV / YouTube

One of the major differences between women and men is that women are often judged based on their looks rather than their character or abilities.

"Men as well as women tend to establish the worth of individual women primarily by the way their body looks, research shows. We do not do this when we evaluate men," Naomi Ellemers Ph.D. wrote in Psychology Today.

Dr. Ellers believes that this tendency to judge a woman solely on her looks causes them to be seen as an object rather than a person.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture