Good News Monday #10: R.I.P., Brave Women, Lost & Found

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on

Here in my home town, we’re on lockdown to “flatten the [COVID-19] curve.” Restaurants and bars closed. Schools closed. Churches closed. Grocery store shelves emptied. What? Even the shelves of ammo in a local gunstore emptied. Yikes!

The good news on the COVID-19 front is that China celebrated closure of the last emergency hospital in Wuhan.

China built 14 new hospitals, including two in Wuhan, early last month in just weeks to provide thousands of beds for the sick as the virus spread rapidly.


Do those look like railroad shipping cars? I learned about modular building for pharmaceutical companies about ten years ago. Pharmadule has been building like for companies like Lilly, Merck, Baxter, and more since 1986.

That gives me hope, that if they can do it there, we can do it here, if we need to. And now, due to a lull in new outbreaks, the hospitals are closing.

R.I.P. Medical Debt: It’s more fun to help people than to hound them.

Two former debt collection executives, Craig Antico and Jerry Ashton, founded R.I.P. Medical Debt in 2014. They buy bundles of old debt, rather than hound the debtors.

So far for 250,000 people received R.I.P. Medical Dept forgiveness envelopes with $434 million in debt wiped out.

Judith Jones, 80, a retired chemist, and Carolyn Kenyon, 70, a psychoanalyst are part of a group of activists working to bring universal healthcare to New York State. Seeing an immediate need, they partnered the non-profit, R.I.P. Medical Debt and asked for donations.

John Oliver did a segment on his HBO show “Last Week Tonight.” He paid $60,000 to forgive $14.9 million in medical debts through the charity. About 9,000 people received the yellow forgiveness envelopes as a result.

“I like doing this much more than I liked doing collecting,” Mr. Antico said.

“I do like the idea that people do not have to ask for help,” he said. “The random act of kindness is kind of a cool thing.”

The New York Times

If you want to donate to R.I.P. Medical Debt click here.

Brave Women at the Well

On Sunday I heard a familiar story of Jesus meeting the woman at the well. This week I read about other brave Women at the Well in Nigeria. Captured by Boko Haram as children and young women, these women undergo rape, torture, and other forms of denigration designed to make them feel less than human. They are often forced to carry out suicide bombing. If they do escape, they are ostracized as terrorist sympathizers.

Some of the women are finding ways to rebel. Some women, forced to bomb a mosque, tied their headscarfs together and lowered the bombs into a well.

The bombs didn’t detonate and the young women, scared and unsure what to do, ran back to the Boko Haram camp. They swore on a Quran to their captors they had accomplished their mission, and that they ran so fast to escape that they lost their hijabs on the way.

Cheers went up, and the fighters convened a feast to celebrate the women they thought had become killers.

Read The New York Times article here.

Unfortunate for the women, Boko Haram leaders decided since they were so ruthless, they were ready to be trained for armed combat. One woman was so distraught, she ran into a firing squad and was killed. Still, some women survive and are telling the world.

Okay, that last bit of good news, did depress me, too. I celebrate their bravery and the same time I grieve for all that they’ve lost.

A homeless man finds bag full of money and gives it to the food bank.

Thirty-two year old Kevin Booth thought maybe the brown paper bag he found outside his local food bank might contain some groceries. Instead, he found $17,000 in cash.

“I’ve never touched that much money and I don’t think I ever will again,” said Kevin.

The News Tribune

Kevin has been homeless for over seven years. He said it wasn’t easy to turn the money over, but he knew the food bank would help more people than just himself. Kevin got a slew of gift cards and recognition from his home town of Sumner, Washington. The food bank will use the money to expand their operation.

Kevin and one of the leaders at the food bank. Read more by clicking here.

What’s on your good news radar this week? You know I want to know.