Ana – Red Cross Volunteer

Photo by Matthias Zomer on

Along with doctors and nurses, the American Red Cross volunteers are closely monitoring the outbreak of COVID-19 and preparing to carry out lifesaving missions in the event of any possible disruptions, as well as supporting public health agencies to help communities prepare. Shiroi Mana had the honor of speaking to Ana.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Ana and I am a volunteer for the Red Cross in a small town in Spain. My role as a volunteer is to help inmigrant kids with their homework and help them improve their Spanish, but the local Red Cross does all sorts of charity work such as feeding the needy, helping inmigrants and the homeless find a job or psychological counseling for individuals in dysfunctional relationships.

What inspired you to become a volunteer?

Well, to be honest, I had a rough childhood myself: I grew up in a household where the parents had a dysfunctional relationship and plenty of emotional problems of their own, which ended up reflecting on the kids as we grew up. This experience made me grow into a deeply emotional person that can’t deal with human suffering or misery. I believe it is my duty to do as much good as I possibly can so other people don’t have to suffer.

What do you consider as your biggest accomplishment as a volunteer?

When the kids I tutor suddenly have a clarity moment that helps them understand a topic they were struggling with. Hearing them gasp and go ‘Ah, I think I understand now !’ might be one of the most rewarding moments of your work as a volunteer !

Do you have advice for readers who want to get started in your field?

Prepare yourself emotionally for the sad moments this field of work will eventually bring. When your superiors tell you ‘Under no circumstances let this child leave with their father’ or that a particular kid had to be sent back to their country because their parents don’t have any money to care for them on the daily… you are going to have to be emotionally strong.

How would you define a “real hero?

To me, a hero is anyone that can atune to the ‘dark side’ of this world and take action to change it. If you know there’s suffering out there but you are doing whatever you can to help, you are a hero too: I don’t care if it is feeding the stray cat across the street or babysitting your neighbors’ kid because she is a single mother and can’t pay for a babysitter.

To support Ana’s mission, please donate:

Written By ShiroiMana

Interview: Nurse Practitioner Akosua

In this time of COVID-19, there is no group that works harder than nurses. They fight the pandemic on the frontlines, risking their lives to save others. They wear the cape to stop the sickness from spreading. And they are the very reason why we’re breathing today. I was honored to interview today’s hero, Akosua.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Akosua. I am a board-certified Adult Gerontology Nurse practitioner, board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner and I have a certification in Emergency Medicine. I currently work full time at one of the busiest emergency rooms in the country. I have been a nurse for 11 years and a nurse practitioner for 5 years.

What inspired you to become a nurse?

The cliché answer: “I like to help people.” Growing up, I used to say a prayer when I heard an ambulance. When it was time to pick a career in college – being that my mom was a nurse – she encouraged me to pick nursing due to the job availability post-college and compensation. Also, I can now directly help the people I pray for when I hear an ambulance.

What do you consider as your biggest accomplishment as a nurse?

I would have to say working full-time and putting myself through graduate school and maintaining a 4.0 average during that process. Also, going back to school last year and obtaining my family nurse practitioner and emergency room postgraduate certification.

Do you have advice for readers who want to get started in your field?

Nursing is not an easy career. If it is truly what you want then dedicate your time, stay focused and get it done by any means necessary

How would you define a “real hero?”

A real hero is someone who makes a huge sacrifice by choice – even if it means risking their life for the benefit of others.

Follow Akosua:

Interview: Officer Richard Mazloom

Everyone feels stressed during this time of sickness and uncertainty. Without a foreseeable future of a normal life, residents of Washington DC wish for a hero to uplift their spirits, keep the peace, and care for their community. Officer Mazloom is that hero.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Officer Richard Mazloom “Maz”. I am a Police Officer with Metropolitan Police Department’s First District. I have been doing this job for 15 years. As a Police Officer I mainly participate in basic patrol functions such as responding to various call for police service. However, as an Officer in Washington, D.C., I have the privilege to be present for a unique array of historical events such as Presidential Inaugurations, major protests and demonstrations, foreign dignitary visits, and major international summits.

My day to day is spent on a Mt. Bike patrol in the Capital Hill neighborhood. In my down time- when I am not combatting drug use and deterring violent crime, I particularly enjoy planning community events, assisting those who are experiencing homelessness, and taking efforts to bridge the trust gap between the police and the community as a whole.

What inspired you to become a police officer?

I guess I always wanted to work in Law Enforcement. I enjoy connecting with people. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t watch way too many cop shows growing up. But after a while, that thirst for action and locking up the “bad guys” quickly changes to a real satisfaction when you see a neighborhood change for the better, or someone’s life get just a bit easier because you were there during a major (many times traumatic) event in their life.

What do you consider your biggest accomplishment as an officer?

While I was undercover with department’s Human Trafficking Unit, I conducted a long term investigation where young women were being recruited and exploited into sex work in the D.C. Metro Area. The investigation ended with the successful arrest of the individual responsible. Several months later I received a letter from the mother of one of the young women thanking me for getting her daughter home. Reading that letter was probably the biggest personal achievements I have had in my career.

Do you have advice for readers who want to get started in your field?

Stay in good physical shape and keep your lifestyle as clean as you can so you can pass the background investigation when applying. EVERYBODY makes questionable decisions in life- but if you know this is what you want to do, start thinking what those decisions would look like when asked about them on a polygraph test. This is true for law enforcement across the board.

I majored in Criminal Justice and Psychology in College. They were interesting topics for me but you don’t have to! Be diverse in your hard and soft skills, learn languages, TRAVEL. Remember, this job is about people. The more diverse your life experience is, the better you will be at this job. One of the biggest issues facing policing in most major cities is a lack of trust with the community. In most of the highly publicized incident over the last decade it has been shown that the local Police force did not adequately represent the citizens they were policing. If you become an officer in a locale that you did not grow up in like I did, then you have a lot to learn!

How would you define a “real hero?”

You don’t need a badge on your chest or a patch on your arm to be a hero. Sure, selflessness helps. And, we’d all like to think we would act valiantly in the face of crisis. But, I’m always amazed at the folks, who despite terrible odds and being dealt a pretty rough hand in life, wake up and go out there, and without any relief in sight, keep moving forward. Those are my people. Those are my heroes.

To learn more about Officer Mazloom:

Interview: Mercedes Kirkland-Doyle, Founder of The Good News Community Kitchen

In this desperate time of Covid-19, millions of families have been laid off without any resources of feeding their families. Founder of nonprofit organization Good News Community Kitchen, Mercedes Kirkland-Doyle, refuses to let the issue become the norm. She and her team distribute groceries and supplies to those in need, offsetting the financial ramifications of the shutdown.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Mercedes N Kirkland-Doyle. I’m an Army Veteran, a mommy, and a servant leader.

What inspired you to pursue that role?

At a young age I was very aware of the people who came in and out of my life, to help us, and since I’ve made something of myself, it’s my purpose to help others as I was helped.

What was your process of becoming this role?

Through the years I’ve always volunteered and helped people. With every new position and life experience I kept adding it to my dreams and then finally I decided to launch my own nonprofit…doing things my way.

What do you consider your biggest accomplishment?

My greatest accomplishment is my role as Mommy but my biggest would be getting the attention of Rachael Ray through my community efforts.

Do you have advice for readers who want to get started in your field?

LEAP. Don’t look left or right at what others are doing. Write your plan [thoroughly] and just go for it. Outside influence will water your vision and confidence down. You don’t need to do anything the way someone else does it. Your way will be fine and there’s an entire following out there waiting to connect with your gift.

How would you define a “real hero?”

Someone who adds values to the lives of others and makes an impact…in any capacity, when they don’t have to but choose to.

Follow Mercedes and The Good News Community Kitchen here:

Princess Sofia of Sweden Works at Hospital to Help During Coronavirus Outbreak

Princess Sofia of Sweden has traded her tiaras for scrubs.

The 35-year-old royal mom is joining the frontline effort in helping coronavirus patients. After completing a intensive training program online, Sofia started working at Sophiahemmet Hospital, of which she is Honorary Chair.

The hospital has been overwhelmed due to COVID-19, leading to the launch the emergency training program. Now, 80 people a week complete the course that Princess Sofia took.

The Royal Court said in a statement on Wednesday, “In the crisis we find ourselves in, the Princess wants to get involved and make a contribution as a voluntary worker to relieve the large workload of health care professionals.”

Read more:

FOX News: Group of Men Help Foster Families During Pandemic

Man Up Tampa Bay, a nonprofit organization, has picked up and delivered chicken tenders to more than 220 foster families.

“It’s just a way to bless them and serve them a nice hot meal,” Jeff Ford, one of the members said. “We believe that foster parents are unsung heroes because they are taking in these kids.”

“We just think that Jesus wants us to act and not just talk,” Ford continued. “So that’s what we are doing out here in the community. We’re acting on behalf of the kids. We’re acting on behalf of the foster parents.”

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Officer Plunkett aids vulnerable citizens as pandemic makes resources hard to access

Sometimes, desperate times bring out the best in people – and Richie Plunkett, a downtown neighborhood resource officer with the Spokane Police Department, is proving that during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Due to the lockdown in Spokane, Washington, shelters and behavioral health services have either shut down or reduced operation, leaving homeless people without resources. Officer Plunkett decided to help by handing out basic supplies and sending the unfortunate to new and unknown shelters.

“A lot of people right now have been pushed out of shelters due to social distancing and the pandemic,” Plunkett said. “They’re worried about it, that there’s not enough food, that no one is around to help them. So I got certain guys that I try to look out for on the streets, and I like to make sure they’re getting these things. They’re not feeling left out from society at this point in time.”

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Thank You By Matt Wiederspan

Thank you to all of the medical professionals who are risking their lives in order to take care of the sick and help heal people.

Thank you to all of the brave first responders who put their lives on the line in order to meet the needs of the community and serve the community, not for their own benefit but for the greater good.

Thank you to everyone who is working hard at grocery stores, as well as the farmers, bakers, chefs, and everyone else who supply those grocery stores, to ensure that we all have good food to put on our tables.

I stand in solidarity with the United States Postal Service. It is a vital part of our history, and it has withstood many of our nation’s toughest times, such as the wars we’ve been through. Secure mail is also vital to our democracy and our communication with one another. As a result, I will not accept or legitimize any heartless attempts to privatize or do away with it.

– Matt Wiederspan (

Heroic Store Clerk Sacrificed Herself to Help People During Coronavirus

A 27-year-old grocery store clerk from Maryland wanted to keep working through the coronavirus pandemic, even though her job put her at risk. Leilani Jordan had a disability, but she told her mom she wanted to continue working at Giant Food because she wanted to help people.

This act of fortitude costed Jordan her life. She was hospitalized with coronavirus symptoms and tragically lost her battle with the disease.

Giant Food said in a statement that they were saddened to learn the news. “We were informed of her passing on Thursday morning by her family. We can only imagine the heartache they are experiencing and have offered our support during this difficult time,” Giant Food spokeswoman Felismina Andrade said.

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16-year-old pilot selflessly flies medical supplies to hospitals in need

16-year-old me flew computerized planes in video games; 16-year-old TJ Kim flies his actual plane to deliver supplies to local hospitals.

“Every hospital is hurting for supplies,” Kim said. “But it’s the rural hospitals that really feel forgotten.”

TJ got the idea when his high school canceled lacrosse season due to the pandemic, leaving him with too much free time. Since he was already taking flying lessons, he proposed the idea of securing medical supplies (including gloves, masks, and gowns) and flying them to small hospitals in the area. His family and instructor loved the idea and quickly coined the effort as “Operation SOS – Supplies Over Skies.”

In his most recent flight, TJ carried 3,000 gloves, 1,000 head-covers, 500 shoe covers, 50 non-surgical masks, 20 pairs of protective eyewear and 10 concentrated bottles of hand sanitiser to a hospital in Woodstock.

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