The week's good news: April 21, 2022

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1. ER nurse volunteers to braid patients' hair during her time off

When she's not working as an ER nurse at Southern Hills Hospital in Las Vegas, Brooke Johns is often still at the hospital, serving as a volunteer instead. Johns spends some of her free time offering hair care for patients, going from room to room to see who would like to have their hair brushed or braided or receive a head massage. She enjoys being a soothing presence for patients who are recovering from surgery or have been in the hospital for months, and likes that she's not rushed as she would be during regular work hours. "I get to go in and there's no time clock," Johns told USA Today. "There's no, 'I've got to get to the next patient room.' If somebody needs me for an hour, I can give them an hour. If somebody needs me for 15 minutes, I can give them 15 minutes. There's freedom in that." In the last year, Johns estimates she's provided this extra care to more than 100 patients.

USA Today

2. Dozens of public art installations are drawing people to this Mississippi town

In Hattiesburg, Mississippi, art is everywhere. It's a mural of people walking through the town, a painting of a hummingbird, a sculpture in the park, and a design on a public utility box. This city of about 50,000 people has embraced public art, with at least 46 installations, mostly murals, making the streets brighter. Officials say they are beautifying Hattiesburg for residents and visitors, showing them this is a place they should want to be. "If you make your residents happy, tourists will come and appreciate those things, but you're not ostracizing your residents at that cost," Shawn Harris, a board member with the Downtown Hattiesburg Association, told The Christian Science Monitor. "It's really about community development and not economic development." The Hattiesburg Alliance for Public Art was founded in 2014, and during the pandemic it commissioned more works of art than ever before, with about half created by local residents.

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The Christian Science Monitor

3. Milwaukee author ensures kids see 'positive representations of themselves' in books and toys

Deanna Singh wants to get people talking. An author and business owner from Milwaukee, Singh aims to make learning about race, diversity, and inclusion accessible for everyone. "I really think that it's important that everybody gets an opportunity to see positive representations of themselves," she told CBS 58. Through her company, Uplifting Impact, Singh and her husband work with companies to start conversations in the workplace about diversity and inclusion. In the summer of 2020, they expanded their focus to offer online sessions with kids about race. Her workshops resonated with the team at American Girl, which asked Singh to write a book for the company. Singh said American Girl told her they wanted to get people talking about "why it's important to have diversity in our literature. It's important to have diversity in our toys." She wrote A Smart Girl's Guide: Race and Inclusion, which discusses racism, anti-racism, and inclusion. "If we're having conversations with our young people at a younger age, then as they grow up these conversations are not so scary," Singh told CBS 58. "They don't seem like something they can't take a part of."

CBS 58

4. U.S. soldier 'so excited' to reunite with homeless dog he bonded with overseas

When a homeless dog named Duke came onto a military base in Kosovo last year, looking for food, he had no idea he was also walking into a new life. Sergeant Kelsey was a member of the U.S. Army unit stationed at the base, and it didn't take long for him to grow fond of the pup. Kelsey wanted to get Duke off the streets, and started working with the New York-based charity Paws of War to get him cleared to go home with him to the United States. When Duke stopped coming to the base, the soldiers got worried, and after several days of searching, discovered he had been shot and was severely dehydrated. Duke underwent emergency surgery, and spent six months recovering at the Alamal Foundation. Recently, Kelsey got the message from Paws of War he'd been waiting for: Duke was healed and able to get on a flight to the U.S. to start his new life. Kelsey told the Good News Network that Duke is expected to arrive this month, and "the entire Army unit is so excited that Duke is coming home. This is the moment we've prayed for."

Good News Network

5. Daughter wanting to make her dad a special birthday gift gets help from firefighters in all 50 states

Firefighters from around the world are helping Alli Marois make the perfect birthday gift for her dad. Marois' father, Bill Collins, retired last September from the Des Moines Fire Department after 38 years. He's turning 61 years old in August, and she wanted to give him a gift that celebrates his "passion for firefighting," she told Fox News Digital. During family vacations, Collins would get a T-shirt from local fire departments, and Marois thought it would be neat to collect as many shirts as possible and turn them into a quilt. "I know he hasn't been to all 50 states, so I figured why not just try something and try to get all 50 states for him," Marois said. In February, Marois posted on social media that she was looking for T-shirts, and encouraged firefighters to "be a part of this journey." It didn't take long before the shirts started rolling in, and she now has at least one tee from every state, as well as some from fire departments in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Fox News Digital

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