21 stories about new ideas, solutions and progress
Photo: Pixabay (CC0)
From a ‘world changing’ malaria vaccine to using boxing lessons to fight anorexia, here’s our recap of the best and most exciting stories from April 2023.
New ‘world changer’ malaria vaccine approved in Ghana
Ghana is the first country to approve a new malaria vaccine that has been described as a ‘world-changer’ by the scientists who developed it.
US smoking numbers at all-time low
Fewer and fewer American adults are consuming cigarettes, a new survey shows, with only one in nine of those polled reporting regular usage. This is roughly a 11% decrease since 2022.
Black unemployment rate hits record low in US
After spiking during the pandemic, the Black unemployment rate sits at a record low of 5%, with Black people now making up 13% of the US workforce.
The Washington Post
Europe’s longest cycle tunnel opens in Norway
The Fyllingsdalstunnelen aims to cut traffic levels and reduce emissions whilst making it easier for people to choose walking and cycling over driving.
Temperate rainforests to be restored in Wales and Isle of Man
Wildlife Trusts schemes are part of a wider programme to help rare habitat recover across the British Isles.
Record number of barrier removals helps restore rivers across Europe
More than 300 barriers were taken down last year, boosting the health of waterways and the wildlife they support, say experts.
Youth climate action councils help enact environmental fixes
Across US cities, young people between the ages of 15 and 22 gather and organize to help fight climate change. Since 2019, they have planted thousands of trees, resurfacing bus kiosks and even influencing climate policy.
The Philidelphia Citizen
Survivors of human trafficking are fighting back against modern slavery
The School for Justice helps women sold into sexual slavery become attorneys, social workers and journalists – saving others from the same fate.
Reasons to be Cheerful
Schools with better student care have less overall violence
Case studies have found that schools, where students feel more cared for by teachers and staff, have reductions in every category of violence, including fewer weapons brought to campuses.
Christian Science Monitor
School bus drivers play a role in assisting homeless students
At the Kingdom East School District in Vermont in the US, bus drivers help bridge the gap between students who are experiencing homelessness and essential resources.
The 74 Million
Preventative measures found to be the best solution to beating homelessness
A Portland shelter found that helping at-risk individuals with small rent payments helped keep them away from homelessness, helping limit potential future rehousing costs.
Reasons to be Cheerful
Text-based mental health support for law students at risk
Early Alert lets students rate one particular aspect of their well-being each week via text, with support staff providing appropriate information and guidance.
First government-run mental health app and helpline created in Pakistan
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif launched the mobile app and toll-free helpline 1166 on World Health Day.
Chile communities defy Atacama desert expansion with fog nets
The nets are able to harvest approximately 500,000 litres of water annually, helping locals revive the mountain region’s vegetation and adapt to drought.
Turning washed-up seaweed into construction materials
Sargassum, an invasive seaweed, is being turned into bricks for construction by an enterprising Mexican businessman. The United Nations Development Program now sees it as a carbon-neutral solution for buildings.
Christian Science Monitor
This school in Madrid was designed by pupils
With the help of Spanish architect Andrés Jaque, students’ visions of a special school has come to life.
Toy libraries bring fun to families struggling with other expenses
For families struggling with cost of living expenses and other things, borrowing from toy libraries ensure fun for their kids.
Grannies help refugees learn English in Australia
In Adelaide, elderly women are helping refugees – many of whom are children from Afghanistan – learn English.
Fighting anorexia with boxing lessons
An English charity uses boxing lessons and interpersonal support networks to help young people deal with eating disorders, anxiety and other psychological issues.
Therapy dogs are helping children learn to read whilst reducing anxiety
The Story Dogs programme helps children who are struggling to read by creating a calming, non-judgemental environment.
The African choirs helping battle loneliness among elderly
African church choirs are partnering with English care homes to help residents socialise. Activities involve singing, dancing and conversing in an attempt to combat loneliness.