For all the problems in the world, there are many inspirational people who dedicate their lives to finding solutions and improving life for people all over the planet. Whether it’s fighting against human trafficking or providing free health care for people who can’t afford it, CNN profiles many of these people with their CNN Heroes series. CNN announced the Top Ten Heroes of 2010, a group that will be introduced in a CNN Heroes special on Thanksgiving. During the “CNN Heroes: All Start Tribute,” one of these 10 people will also be announced as the CNN Hero of the Year. The hero of the year will be voted on by any willing voter at home. You can learn more about the CNN Heroes and vote for your favorite on the CNN Heroes site and learn how to support their causes as well (http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/cnn.heroes/). Here’s a quick preview:
Susan Burton spent much of her life facing addiction and incarceration, but after battling the issues in her own life, she’s worked to provide sober housing to more than 400 incarcerated women in California.
Linda Fondren has united her Mississippi community with a weight loss challenge and free weight loss and nutrition classes. Residents have lost nearly 15,000 combined pounds to date.
Dan Wallrath and his Operation Finally Home team have built nine homes, and are constructing many more, for injured Afghanistan and Iraq veterans – mortgage free.
Aki Ra was a child soldier in Cambodia. Today he is working to clear land mines in the country, many of which he planted himself when he was young. So far, his organization has cleared more than 50,000 land mines and unexploded weapons.
Harmon Parker has built more than 45 footbridges in Kenya. The bridges are over dangerous rivers and protect locals from flash floods and predatory animals, as well as connecting isolated residents to new resources.
Anuradha Koirala and her organization, Maiti Nepal, have helped rescue and rehabilitate more than 12,000 victims of sex trafficking and sexual exploitation in Nepal.
Evans Wadongo brought solar power to Kenya. His assistance allows them to replace kerosene and fire with solar lanterns. So far he’s distributed more than 10,000 of these lanterns.
Narayanan Krishnan has brought more than 1.2 million meals to the homeless in India with his nonprofit Akshaya Trust.
Guadalupe Arizpe De La Vega found a hospital that cares for people in Jaurez, Mexico, whether they can pay or not. At this time, they serve about 900 people a day even amidst increasing violence in the area.
Magnus McFarlane-Barrow runs the program Mary’s Meals, which provides free daily meals to more than 400,000 children around the world, all from a shed in the Scottish Highlands.