The Friday Five: Your Uplifting Stories of the Week

Sometimes the news can be, well, not so inspiring. When headlines get you down, it’s important to remember that positive things are still happening all around us. Here are five hopeful and encouraging stories to pay attention to this week:

Bringing the Luck of the Irish to Others

Looking for a way to bring a little Irish luck to your community? Create the Good has some ideas to “get your green on” all year long. From helping others “save the green” (helping people find jobs, improve financial literacy, and connect to public assistance programs) to working towards “going green” with a number of environmental and community initiatives, there are so many opportunities to start a tradition of service that embodies the spirit of Saint Patrick himself. Read more.

Bipartisan Road Trip Fosters Understanding

When Texas Representatives Beto O’Rourke, a Democrat, and Will Hurd, a Republican, found themselves stranded after their flights were canceled due to a snowstorm, they improvised, renting a car together and driving the 1,600-mile journey to make it back to Washington, D.C. in time for votes. While their parties couldn’t be more at odds, the two used their long journey home to find understanding, talking about everything from policy issues to their favorite foods. They passed the time by creating a Facebook video stream, answering questions from commenters. “I think we came to some common ground,” O’Rourke said. Read more.

Generous 6-Year-Old Girl Celebrates Birthday by Giving Back

As she was on the cusp of turning six, Chicago kindergartner Armani Crews thought of those less fortunate than her. Instead of a birthday party, she begged her parents to help her feed the homeless people in her community. Initially, her family thought that she was joking and told her that if she were to go through with this, she would receive no presents. But Armani persisted, convinced her parents, and even got her local church to assist in putting together food and care packages. In the end, Armani’s persistence fed more than 125 people. Read more.

Free Rides Home on Saint Patrick’s Day

For those in the D.C. area who enjoy their Saint Patrick’s Day a little too much, there are several options available to ensure revelers get home safely. Yellow cabs are offering free rides from 9 p.m. on Thursday to 3 a.m. on Saturday. Even Lyft is getting in on the action, providing up to $20 off a ride for those who use the promo code SOBERRIDE. Ernest Chrappah, director of the District’s Department of For-Hire Vehicles, says free ride programs “help to ensure greater Washington, D.C., residents have a safe ride home and prevent accidents and fatalities from drunk driving.” Read more.

Superstar Principal Makes Time to Connect With Students

Every Friday, students from Evergreen Avenue Elementary School anxiously await a visit from their principal to their home. For some kids, getting a visit from your principal might not be a positive thing, but Principal Tom Braddock arrives in good spirits for every student, carrying a Stand Out Student Award and a pencil to show his pride for his students who receive the honor. Principal Braddock’s goal is to visit every single one of his students before the year ends. “I look through a very different lens now after going to all of their homes. It’s not only opened my heart, but opened my mind,” he said. “It’s allowed me to look at each child in a much more loving and understanding way.” Read more.

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