Photo: Peyton Manker

COVID-19 has forced places like zoos to close, social events like school dances to cancel, and even people like the Queen of England to shelter-in-place. It’s a huge bummer, but kids around the world are making the best of it. Check out what these kids are doing to help lift their spirits, as well as the spirits around them.

Problem: Zoos are running out of money to care for their animals.

Solution: Andy Soulard, age 6, set a goal of raising \$200 for the Oakland Zoo. She started by contributing her own money—the \$5 that she received from the tooth fairy. Word soon spread and animal and zoo-lovers across the country joined her effort. Her goal of \$200 was quickly surpassed. She has currently raised over \$200,000 for the Oakland Zoo. As a thank you to all of those who supported her fundraiser, she is making them bracelets!

Problem: First responders don’t have enough personal protective equipment to help care for those sick with COVID-19.

Solution: Ayan Gupta, a high school student and his classmates at Tesla STEM High School in Redmond, Washington, wanted to do something to help with the COVID-19 pandemic. When someone suggested that they print face shields for local hospitals, they got right on it! With Ayan’s background in science and robotics and the help of his like-minded friends, they were able to prototype, 3D print, assemble, and distribute masks to local hospitals within forty-eight hours from when the idea was suggested to them.

Problem: People are bored while sheltering-in-place.

Solution: 7 year old Timothy Madders loves word searches so he decided to make a word search for the Queen of England because … well … he was concerned that she might be feeling a little sad and bored while sheltering in place. He made sure to include cheerful words such as happiness in his word search, and boy did Queen Elizabeth appreciate it! As a thank you for his gift, she sent him a personal thank you letter. That’s a royal recognition of appreciation if you ask us! Good job, Timothy!

Problem: Prom was canceled!

Solution: High school student Peyton Manker wasn’t going to let a canceled prom get her down. Instead, she decided to enter a competition for designing and making a prom dress. She spent 395 hours and forty-one rolls of duct tape to create a prom dress that reflected how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the world. She even completed her outfit with a purse shaped as a coronavirus. Her thoughtful design and hours of work paid off—she won!

This post originally appeared on Xyza: News for Kids.