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The week's good news: April 26, 2018

Catherine Garcia
Yelizaveta Tomashevska/iStock
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1.

Colorado girl is turning her birthday party into a fundraiser for a 4-year-old with cancer

Instead of bringing presents, Logan Wilson is asking people to celebrate her 12th birthday by participating in a family fun run to raise money for a new friend battling a rare cancer. Wilson told CBS Denver she was inspired to help Piper Waneka, 4, after reading the book Choose to Matter by Olympic gold medalist Julie Foudy. Waneka was diagnosed last June with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), a cancerous brain tumor that is only found in children. There is no cure or treatment. Other kids Wilson's age heard about the fundraiser and have canceled their own birthday parties and joined the cause. Wilson is looking forward to the run, which will bring much-needed awareness to DIPG. "I hope they just find a cure and work harder and harder and make it better for families who are experiencing it," she said. [CBS Denver]

2.

Teenage boy makes sure his mom has the dazzling prom experience she missed out on

While her friends picked out dresses and worried about dates, Fatima Faruq chose not to attend her senior prom, putting her energy instead into saving money so the new mom and her infant son could have their own apartment. That son, Nassir Al-Faruq, is now 18, and wanting to give his mom the experience she missed out on, asked if she wanted to go to prom with him this year. Nassir told The Washington Post he wanted his mom, now 36, to "enjoy herself and I wanted her to feel young again." They turned heads when they arrived at the Crystal Tea Room in downtown Philadelphia for Cardinal O'Hara High School's prom, wearing matching green outfits. Nassir said everyone told them they looked "dope," and they enjoyed dancing and hanging out with Nassir's friends. "My mom is a cool person," he said. "She can make you laugh." [The Washington Post]

3.

Quick-thinking Australian teens rescue young kangaroo stuck in the mud

While riding their motorcycles in the mud flats outside of Sydney, two Australian teenagers saw a kangaroo in distress, and dropped everything to save it. Jack Donnelly and Nick Heath tried to reach the young kangaroo, which was stuck in mud up to its neck, but he was too far out. Heath put a rope around his waist, went out to the kangaroo, and then was pulled back in by Donnelly. "The roo's life was important to us so we went out on an arm and leg and got it," Heath told Australia's Today. "It's a pretty patriotic thing to do and we're proud of what we did. If we saw something like that again, we'll do it all over again." It's believed that the kangaroo, now recovering at a rescue, was looking for water, and that's how it got stuck. [9 News]

4.

Man donates kidney to high school classmate, 50 years after graduation

There was no hesitation — when Charlie Ball heard that his old high school classmate Kenneth Walker needed a kidney, he volunteered to donate if a match. Ball and Walker both graduated from Archbishop Carroll High School in Washington, D.C., in 1969, and while they weren't friends, Ball recognized Walker's name when he saw an email from him in his inbox. Walker, a journalist, tried everything to find a match, and at a suggestion of a friend, sent an email to their old classmates about his plight. Ball responded within 15 minutes with his offer. Last week, Ball and Walker underwent surgery at George Washington University Hospital, with Walker — who called this an "example of humanity" — eternally grateful for the gift of life. "I'm giving him a piece of my body," Ball told WJLA. "It's simple enough. God gave me two, I don't have to wonder why." [WJLA]

5.

95-year-old Canadian grandmother has donated her blood more than 200 times

At 95 years old, Canada's oldest blood donor is happy to keep on giving. Beatrice "Granny Bea" Janyk has been donating blood ever since her husband nearly died from a sawmill accident in the 1940s. She's given blood more than 200 times to no fanfare, but last week Canadian blood services honored her with a special ceremony and pin. "Knowing that I can save someone's life, that's so important," says the great-grandmother, who takes no medications so her O-positive blood can be used for children and infant transfusions. Janyk's message to anyone who's afraid of giving blood is simple: "No pain, 20 minutes, then you'll gain." [Vancouver Sun]