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Good News of the Week: Positive headlines you may have missed: August 19 – August 23, 2019

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DELTA DONATES FLIGHTS TO HUMAN TRAFFICKING SURVIVORS AND MONEY TO NATIONAL VICTIMS HOTLINE

If you travel often, you probably keep your head down and earphones on while getting through the airport hustle and bustle, but airline employees are trained to do just the opposite. Delta has quietly launched a campaign to fight human trafficking, relying on observant pilots, flight attendants and gate attendants to speak up if something seems off about a passenger.

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“Once you understand you have the ability, therefore the responsibility to stop human trafficking, you take it everywhere,” said a Delta Airlines Flight Attendant who successfully identified and alerted authorities to a child victim of trafficking.

The International Labor Organization estimates there are more than 40 million victims of human trafficking globally. 75% of trafficking victims are women and girls. A recent report shows a large majority of victims are transported on airplanes.

It’s Friday and if that’s not enough cause for celebration, these stories will help put you in the right mood to start your weekend. I’ve collected some positive news stories from this past week that might not have gotten as much news coverage as they deserve. From big corporations to small-town local heroes, there are a lot more people doing good and spreading love than we might realize.

Delta Airlines has committed to more employee training to help fight trafficking and equip flight attendants and others who interact with passengers with the tools to spot trafficking victims and properly alert authorities. The airline has provided more than 100 flights to fly human trafficking victims to safety through its Sky Wish program. 

Additionally, Delta has committed $1.5 million to Polaris, the operator of the National Human Trafficking hotline. Since Delta first launched this effort in 2017 with an initial donation of $1 million, the hotline has reported a 36% increase in contacts from survivors.

FORMER PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA CO-LAUNCHES NEW NETFLIX SERIES AIMED AT EMPOWERING THE WORKING CLASS

‘Netflix and Chill’ is a popular weekend pastime for many, especially if it’s too hot or too rainy to enjoy outdoor activities. Well if your weekend plans involve a television, don’t miss this new eye-opening project produced in part by former president and first lady Barack and Michelle Obama.

The former first couple recently appeared in a Netflix video teaser for American Factory, the first episode of a new docu-series coming to the streaming platform. This documentary explores the dynamics of an Ohio factory that’s managed by Chinese people and the workers are majority American. This production offers powerful commentary on labor, the economy and cultural sensitivities in the workplace. In a newly released video teaser Barack Obama says the goal of these productions is to empower working class stories. 

“We want people to be able to get outside of themselves and experience and understand the lives of somebody else,” Obama said.

American Factory is a product of Higher Ground Productions, the Obamas’ new production company. This is the first of several programs by the Obamas production company. You can stream it on Netflix now.

OHIO STUDENT EARNS THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS, THEN DONATES IT TO CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

You probably haven’t heard of Collins, Ohio. It’s a small town of just 631 residents located in the northeast portion of the Buckeye State. This week, a student from Collins received national attention and praise for making a big donation to help sick kids.

Diesel Pippert, a seventh-grade student at Western Reserve Middle School sold livestock at this year’s Huron County Fair. Over the course of the five-day event Pippert made $15,000 in profits from selling livestock.

Instead of keeping the money for himself, Pippert decided to donate it to St. Jude’s Research Hospital. St. Jude’s is a non-profit children’s hospital that works to treat and cure childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. They provide life-saving care for families across the country regardless of a family’s ability to pay. According to the hospital website “Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.”

Pippert’s school posted to Facebook sharing how proud they are of his unselfish charitable donation. The post has gone viral receiving more than three thousand likes and being shared nearly two thousand times.

CALL CENTER REP HELPS MAN HAVING A STROKE ALMOST 900 MILES AWAY

It’s not often a call center representative becomes a guardian angel for a complete stranger, but that’s exactly what happened one fateful day in August. 65-year old Dan Magennis of Grand Rapids, Michigan called his cable company to ask why he had lost some channels. Dan got connected to Kimberley Williams, a representative working in a Mississippi call center. At some point during the call Williams noticed Dan’s speech became severely slurred and difficult to understand. She heard the phone drop and immediately knew something was wrong.

Williams correctly identified that Magennis was having a stroke. She called 9-1-1 and EMT’s arrived at his home shortly after to transport him to nearby Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital. A neurologist at the hospital who treated Magennis told reporters “Williams’ quick action saved Magennis’ life and prevented him from suffering any disability.”

This heartwarming story has been covered by both local and national news outlets including the Today Show. In an interview Magennis told reporters he owes his life to this observant and compassionate call center representative.

“She doesn’t know me, but what she did, it was phenomenal. Neither of us will ever forget it,” he said. “She saved (me) … That is amazing.”

According to the American Stroke Association, Stroke is the number two most common cause of death worldwide. Even if a person survives a stroke, they can have lasting physical and cognitive effects. The organization uses the acronym F.A.S.T. (Face drooping, arm weakness, speech, time to call 9-1-1) to educate people on how to recognize symptoms of stroke and what to do if you notice them in someone else.

NBA SUPERSTAR KAWHI LEONARD DONATES BOOKS, OTHER SUPPLIES TO L.A. SCHOOL DISTRICT

Nothing gets a kid more excited for the start of a new school year like having brand new supplies and clothes to start the year off with confidence. NBA superstar Kawhi Leonard helped generate some additional excitement for back-to-school season with a donation of one million backpacks to students in several LA County school districts.

The backpacks will go to students in the Los Angeles, Inglewood and Moreno Valley Unified School Districts. The LA Clippers Basketball organization along with non-profit group Baby2Baby partnered with Leonard to make this donation possible.

“My goal this year is to make a meaningful contribution both on and off the court,” Leonard said in a statement. “This felt like the right way to get started. It was important to me to make this announcement in my hometown of Moreno Valley at my former Elementary School, but the benefits this program will have across all of Los Angeles makes today even more special.”

Leonard is originally from Southern California. He stopped by his former elementary school, Cloverdale, to announce this generous gift. Leonard played basketball for the San Antonio Spurs for years before signing to the Toronto Raptors, and leading them to an NBA title in 2019. This off season he signed a new contract with the LA clippers and is already making contributions to better his community.

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