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Inspiring Readers to Take Action

Owen with Branden Harvey, founder and chief executive officer of Good Good Good, a media company that spotlights inspiring stories 

“We believe that no matter what piece of bad news there is in the world, there’s also a story of a helper, somebody who’s showing up and making a difference,” says Branden Harvey, founder and chief executive officer of Good Good Good.

I recently spoke with Harvey in Portland, Oregon, about his media organization. Harvey founded Good Good Good in 2017. Before that, he was a professional photographer. A lot of his work was with nonprofit organizations. He liked sharing stories about people making a positive difference and decided he wanted to write stories, too. 

Good Good Good shares stories from around the world. Eight staff members, as well as contributing writers and artists, help Harvey tell inspiring stories about social justice, education, and animals, among other topics. The articles in Good Good Good reach people through the organization’s website, email newsletter, podcast, and monthly print newspaper. A digital version of the newspaper is available at most libraries in the United States through Libby, a reading app. Good Good Good also provides readers with opportunities to take action, to not just feel good “but do good.” 

During our conversation, Harvey explained why positive stories are important, especially in difficult times. He was inspired, he said, by the late Fred Rogers. For several decades, Rogers hosted Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, a children’s television program. He was known for saying, “When I was boy, and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’” 


Good Good Good stories are available online and in a print edition.


Harvey talked about some of the Good Good Good stories that have stayed with him. One is about Terence Lester, an activist and author who was once homeless. Lester started a nonprofit called Love Beyond Walls, which provides food, clothing, and other resources to people in need. He also created a museum inside a shipping container. The Dignity Museum, which can be transported, helps visitors understand what it’s like to experience homelessness. 

“It’s really cool that he’s been able to take his personal experience and find a way to make a difference for others,” Harvey said.

Harvey added that stories like Lester’s can inspire people to help others. He encourages young journalists to look for similarly hopeful stories, especially when events make them feel sad, overwhelmed, or nervous. 

“I think it’s OK to feel those feelings,” he said. “That’s super normal. But then, as a journalist, what would it look like to say, ‘I wonder if there’s somebody making a difference? I wonder if there’s a helper here?’ You have an opportunity to help a lot of people by finding those stories.”



Top photo courtesy of the author; bottom photo courtesy of Branden Harvey