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Inspirational Media Articles
Excerpts of Key Inspirational Media Articles in Major Media


Below are highly engaging excerpts of key inspirational articles reported in the mainstream media. Links are provided to the original articles on their major media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These inspirational articles are listed by article date. You can also explore the articles listed by order of importance or by date posted. Enjoy the inspiring articles!


Note: Explore our full index to key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


A large new study offers clues about how lower-income children can rise up the economic ladder.
2022-08-01, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/01/briefing/economic-ladder-rich-poor-america...

Social scientists have made it a priority in recent years to understand upward mobility. Money itself is ... important. Other factors – like avoiding eviction, having access to good medical care and growing up in a household with two parents – may also make upward mobility more likely. Now there is another intriguing factor to add to the list, thanks to a study ... in the academic journal Nature: friendships with people who are not poor. "Growing up in a community connected across class lines improves kids' outcome," [said] Raj Chetty ... one of the study's four principal authors. The study ... compares two otherwise similar children in lower-income households – one who grows up in a community where social contacts mostly come from the lower half of the socioeconomic distribution, and another who grows up in a community where social contacts mostly come from the upper half. The average difference between the two, in terms of their expected adult outcomes, is significant. It's the same as the gap between a child who grows up in a family that makes $27,000 a year and one who grows up in a family that makes $47,000. There seem to be three main mechanisms by which cross-class friendships can increase a person's chances of escaping poverty. The first is raised ambition: Social familiarity can give people a clearer sense of what's possible. The second is basic information, such as how to apply to college and for financial aid. The third is networking, such as getting a recommendation for an internship.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


USPS will make 40% of its new trucks electric, up from 10%
2022-07-20, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/07/20/usps-electric-trucks/

The U.S. Postal Service pledged Wednesday to electrify at least 40 percent of its new delivery fleet, an increase that climate activists hailed as a major step toward reducing the government's environmental footprint. The Postal Service had been set to purchase as many as 165,000 vehicles from Oshkosh Defense, of which 10 percent would have been electric under the original procurement plan. Now it will acquire 50,000 trucks from Oshkosh, half of which will be EVs. It will also buy another 34,500 commercially available vehicles, with sufficient electric models to make 4 in 10 trucks in its delivery fleet zero-emission vehicles. The announcement comes after 16 states, the District of Columbia, and four of the nation's top environmental groups sued the mail agency in the spring to prevent the original purchase plan, or compel it to buy more electric trucks. The mail agency's combined purchase of 84,500 trucks – which begin hitting the streets in late 2023 – will go a long way toward meeting President Biden's goal for the entire government fleet to be EV-powered by 2035. The Postal Service's more than 217,000 vehicles make up the largest share of federal civilian vehicles. Congress in March also passed a $107 billion agency overhaul, freeing up money that postal leaders had long sought for capital improvements. Lawmakers ... pointed to the agency's need for new trucks – its fleet now is 30 years old, and has neither air bags nor air conditioning – to keep up with private-sector EV investments in approving the legislation.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Spain announces completely free train travel to deal with cost-of-living crisis
2022-07-14, Yahoo News
https://news.yahoo.com/spain-announces-completely-free-train-travel-to-deal-w...

Spain has announced it will make some short- and middle-distance train journeys completely free as the government seeks to combat the impact of the cost-of-living crisis. Spanish prime minister Pedro Sánchez said on Tuesday that all Cercanías (commuter trains), Rodalies (commuter routes in Catalonia) and Media Distancia routes (mid-distance regional lines which cover distances less than 300km) run by the national rail system will be free from 1 September 1 to 31 December this year. The 100% discount will only apply to multi-trip tickets. The new scheme comes in addition to the government funding a discount of between 30-50% on all public transport - including metros, buses and trams. Spanish inflation has accelerated in the past few months and surpassed 10% for the first time in 37 years during the 12 months to June. Sanchez said soaring inflation was the biggest challenge for Spain, likening it to "a serious illness of our economy that impoverishes everyone, especially the most vulnerable groups". He also announced 100 euros a month in complementary scholarships for students older than 16 years who already receive scholarships. "I am fully aware of the daily difficulties that most people face. I know that your salary is getting less and less, that it is difficult to make ends meet, and that your shopping basket is becoming more and more expensive", Sánchez said. On Thursday, the European Commission warned inflation could hit historic highs of 7.6%, up from last month's prediction of 6.1%.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Officer, once beaten by colleagues, to lead Boston police
2022-07-13, San Francisco Chronicle/Associated Press
https://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Officer-once-beaten-by-colleagues-to-lead...

A former Boston police officer who was beaten more than 25 years ago by colleagues who mistook him for a shooting suspect will be the new leader of the city's police department, Mayor Michelle Wu announced. Michael Cox, 57, will return to his hometown of Boston after working as the police chief in Ann Arbor, Michigan, to lead the same force he once brought a civil rights case against over his beating by fellow cops. Cox, who is Black, will take over as commissioner next month. Before becoming chief in Ann Arbor in 2019, Cox was part of the Boston police force for 30 years, where he rose through the ranks after fighting for years to get justice over his beating that left him seriously injured. Cox was working undercover in plainclothes as part of the gang unit in January 1995 when officers got a call about a shooting. Cox, dressed in jeans and a sweatshirt, spotted the suspect. The suspect started to scale a fence and Cox was struck from behind just as he was about to grab the man. He was kicked and punched by fellow officers, suffering head injuries and kidney damage. Cox has described facing harassment in an effort to silence him after the beating became public despite efforts by his colleagues to cover it up. A department injury report said Cox lost his footing on a frozen puddle, causing him to fall and crack his head. Cox chose to stay in the police force after what happened to him and try to improve things instead of walking away from a job he loved.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


India bans single-use plastic to combat pollution
2022-07-01, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2022/07/01/india/india-bans-single-use-plastic-intl-hnk/i...

India on Friday imposed a ban on single-use plastics on items ranging from straws to cigarette packets to combat worsening pollution in a country whose streets are strewn with waste. Announcing the ban, the government dismissed the demands of food, beverage and consumer goods companies to hold off the restriction to avoid disruptions. Plastic waste has become a significant source of pollution in India, the world's second most populous country. Rapid economic growth has fueled demand for goods that come with single-use plastic products, such as straws and disposable cutlery. But India, which uses about 14 million tons of plastic annually, lacks an organized system for managing plastic waste, leading to widespread littering. India's ban on single-use plastic items includes straws, cutlery, ear buds, packaging films, plastic sticks for balloons, candy and ice-cream, and cigarette packets, among other products, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government said. PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, India's Parle Agro, Dabur and Amul had lobbied for straws to be exempted from the ban. In a relief to consumers, the government has for now exempted plastic bags but it has asked manufacturers and importers to raise the thickness to promote reuse. Some experts believe that enforcing the ban might be difficult. The government has decided to set up control rooms to check any illegal use, sale and distribution of single-use plastic products.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Humour and healthcare: how medical clowns are making an impact
2022-06-30, Kinder
https://kinder.world/articles/solutions/humour-and-healthcare-how-medical-clo...

Robin Williams brought a lot of great characters to life on screen. But it's his role as the titular character in the award nominated 1998 biographical film Patch Adams that helped bring attention to a (then) relatively young therapeutic field: medical clowning. In early 19th century France, a famous clown trio by the name of "the Fratellini Brothers" began visiting hospitalised children to improve their moods. It wasn't until 1986 when the presence of professional clowns as members of hospital health care teams started. This happened when professional clown Michael Christensen of 'Big Apple Circus' founded 'Big Apple Circus Clown Care' in New York; a program with the aim of preparing professional clowns to use humour and clowning skills in visits to hospitals to assist in patient healing. By parodying the work of medical doctors, "clown doctors" made young patients less afraid of what the doctors were doing. These clowns were able to bring smiles and laughter to patients using their circus skills, tricks, and improvisation. Since [then], other clown care units have been formed across the United States ... and beyond. In 2020 there were at least 40 Healthcare Clowning Organisations operating in 21 countries in Europe. The aim of the medical clown goes beyond humour. Clown doctors have therapeutic relationships with patients and on top of reducing the negative effects associated with illness, medical clowns contribute to patients' well-being and help create a lighter atmosphere in the hospital.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The green revolution sweeping Sweden
2022-06-29, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-solutions/interactive/2022/sweden-gree...

Claes Nordmark, mayor of Boden, steps out into a vast clear-cut area. He ... motions toward an electrical substation nearby. "Listen to that," he says. "The atmosphere in Boden is crackling, just like that switchgear." If all goes to plan, in July start-up H2 Green Steel (H2GS) will start building the world's first "fossil-free" steelworks in this Swedish town of 17,000, just below the Arctic Circle. It's a multibillion-dollar project that would make a multimillion-ton impact on the climate, cutting over 90 percent of a regular steel factory's carbon dioxide emissions. A boom of renewable-powered industries has given rise to what has been dubbed a "green revolution." A massive revamp is underway to decarbonize the state-run mines. Besides steel mills, the region hosts Europe's first battery mega factory, called Northvolt Ett, along with fossil-free fertilizer and aviation biofuel factories. In the coming two decades, an estimated $100 billion to $150 billion will be invested and up to 100,000 jobs created in this sparsely populated and often overlooked region. Put together, this is the centerpiece of Sweden's 2045 net-zero carbon pledge and the country's ambitions to become a front-runner in the quest for a fossil-free economy. "We need a shift from an administrative mind-set to a courageous one," says CEO Henrikkson, a gust of wind rearranging his hair while he walks near the H2GS office in Stockholm. Nowadays, Henriksson says, major projects often grind to a halt because politicians and bureaucrats fear making mistakes.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


EU plan to halve use of pesticides in 'milestone' legislation to restore ecosystems
2022-06-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/jun/22/eu-legislation-restoratio...

For the first time in 30 years, legislation has been put forward to address catastrophic wildlife loss in the EU. Legally binding targets for all member states to restore wildlife on land, rivers and the sea were announced today, alongside a crackdown on chemical pesticides. In a boost for UN negotiations on halting and reversing biodiversity loss, targets released by the European Commission include reversing the decline of pollinator populations and restoring 20% of land and sea by 2030, with all ecosystems to be under restoration by 2050. The commission also proposed a target to cut the use of chemical pesticides in half by 2030 and eradicate their use near schools, hospitals and playgrounds. Frans Timmermans, executive vice-president of the commission, said the laws were a step forward in tackling the "looming ecocide" threatening the planet. Around â‚Ź100bn (Ł85bn) will be available for spending on biodiversity, including the restoration of ecosystems. The target of 2030 to cut the use of pesticides will give farmers time to find alternatives. The proposals, which campaigners have hailed as a potential milestone for nature, could become law in around a year. Member states would have to create restoration plans to show the commission how they would reach the targets set, and if they fail to follow through they would face legal action. Priority ecosystems include those with the greatest power to remove and store carbon, as well as buffer the impacts of natural disasters.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


How Houston Moved 25,000 People From the Streets Into Homes of Their Own
2022-06-14, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/14/headway/houston-homeless-people.html

A handful of people were living in tents and cardboard lean-tos. As a vice president of Houston's Coalition for the Homeless, Ms. Rausch was there to move them out. For more than a month, Ms. Rausch and her colleagues had been coordinating with Harris County officials, as well as with the mayor's office and local landlords. They had visited the encampment and talked to people living there, so that now, as tents were being dismantled, the occupants could move directly into one-bedroom apartments, some for a year, others for longer. In other words, the people living in the encampment would not be consigned to homeless shelters, cited for trespassing or scattered to the winds, but, rather, given a home. During the last decade, Houston, the nation's fourth most populous city, has moved more than 25,000 homeless people directly into apartments and houses. The overwhelming majority of them have remained housed after two years. The number of people deemed homeless in the Houston region has been cut by 63 percent since 2011. Even judging by the more modest metrics registered in a 2020 federal report, Houston did more than twice as well as the rest of the country at reducing homelessness. "Before I leave office, I want Houston to be the first big city to end chronic homelessness," Sylvester Turner [commented]. Mr. Turner, who is serving his final term as mayor, joined Harris County leaders in unveiling a $100 million plan that would ... cut the local homeless count in half again by 2025.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


China Reduced Air Pollution in 7 Years as Much as US Did in Three Decades
2022-06-13, Bloomberg
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-06-14/china-s-clean-air-campaign...

China has reduced air pollution nearly as much in seven years as the US did in three decades, helping to bring down average global smog levels in the process. The amount of harmful particulates in the air in China fell 40% from 2013 to 2020, according to the University of Chicago's Energy Policy Institute, which would add about two years to average life expectancy if sustained. While smog in large swathes of the country still significantly exceeds safe levels, its experience shows how quickly progress can be made, researchers including Professor Michael Greenstone said in a report. About 97% of the world's population live in areas where air quality is usually worse than World Health Organization guidelines, according to the researchers. Smog reduces global life expectancy more than cigarette smoking, alcohol or poor sanitation. "China's success in reducing pollution is a strong indication of the opportunities that could lie ahead for other nations if they were to impose strong pollution policies," they said. Even in the US and Europe ... more than 90% of people live in areas that don't meet WHO guidelines, which were tightened last year. China's success, led by restrictions on car use and coal burning in major cities, has been rapid, with its 40% decline in seven years nearly equaling a 44% drop in US pollution over 30 years from 1970, after the landmark Clean Air Act was passed. Without China's declines, the world would have seen average pollution levels increase since 2013 instead of drop.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Monarch butterfly populations are thriving in North America
2022-06-10, UGA Today (Newspaper of the University of Georgia)
https://news.uga.edu/monarch-butterfly-populations-are-thriving/

For years, scientists have warned that monarch butterflies are dying off in droves because of diminishing winter colonies. But new research from the University of Georgia shows that the summer population of monarchs has remained relatively stable over the past 25 years. Published in Global Change Biology, the study suggests that population growth during the summer compensates for butterfly losses due to migration, winter weather and changing environmental factors. "There's this perception out there that monarch populations are in dire trouble, but we found that's not at all the case," said Andy Davis, corresponding author of the study. "It goes against what everyone thinks, but we found that they're doing quite well. In fact, monarchs are actually one of the most widespread butterflies in North America." The study authors caution against becoming complacent, though, because rising global temperatures may bring new and growing threats not just to monarchs but to all insects. This study represents the largest and most comprehensive assessment of breeding monarch butterfly population to date. The researchers compiled more than 135,000 monarch observations from the North American Butterfly Association between 1993 and 2018 to examine population patterns and possible drivers of population changes, such as precipitation and widespread use of agricultural herbicides. The team found an overall annual increase in monarch relative abundance of 1.36% per year.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


New Mark Cuban Company Slashes High Drug Prices: 'Life Changing'
2022-06-07, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/mark-cuban-company-slashes-high-drug-prices-praise-s...

Celebrity investor Mark Cuban is receiving praise on social media after he launched a new company that provides patients access to affordable medications. Cuban launched the Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug Company (MCCPDC), a direct-to-consumer online company that offers more than 100 generic medications at discounted prices. The investor said ​​he aims to "be the low-cost provider of medications to patients." He continued: "If you don't have insurance or have a high deductible plan, you know that even the most basic medications can cost a fortune. Many people are spending crazy amounts of money each month just to stay healthy. No American should have to suffer or worse–because they can't afford basic prescription medications." The company's low costs are achieved by working directly with partners, which "allows us to only markup our costs by 15 percent," Cuban explained. Explaining the business model, Cuban cited the drug prescribed for hookworm, Albendazole, which can cost as much as $500 per course. "Our cost for Albendazole is $26.08 per course. We mark that price up by 15 percent so we can continue to run the company and invest in disrupting the pricing of as many drugs as we possibly can," he explained. "That makes the base price of the drug $30. Then we add on the actual cost, $3.00, that our pharmacy partners charge us to prepare and provide your prescription to you. "That makes the sales price on this website $33. Far, far lower than the pricing available in the marketplace."

Note: As big Pharma rakes in the huge profits, Marc Cuban has created a new company called CostPlus which brings many expensive drugs to you at a fraction of the price. Sadly, very few of the major media are reporting on this. Cuban says, "Everyone should have safe, affordable medicines with transparent prices."


The workers getting 100% pay for 80% of the hours
2022-06-06, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-61570021

About 70 companies are taking part in what is thought to be the world's biggest pilot scheme into the working pattern over the next six months. The experiment has been organised by a group campaigning for a shorter working week, but for no loss in wages. During the trial, employees will get 100% pay for 80% of the hours they would usually work, with the aim of being more productive. Academics from Oxford and Cambridge universities, as well experts at Boston College in the US, will manage the experiment in partnership with the think tank Autonomy. Companies ranging from office-based software developers and recruitment firms to charities and a local fish and chip shop are taking part. "The UK trial is historic", said Juliet Schor, the lead researcher on the Global 4-day week project. "The basis of this movement is that there's activity going on in many workplaces, particularly white collar workplaces, that's low-productivity and that you can cut without harming the business." She said the trouble with the five-day week is that work can simply expand to fit the time available. "Sticking to a rigid, centuries-old, time-based system doesn't make sense," Ms Schor added. "You can be 100% productive in 80% of the time in many workplaces, and companies adopting this around the world have shown that." Even if workers are just 10% more productive the economics can still stack up, she argued, if it leads to lower sickness rates, fewer staff leaving and making it easier to attract new recruits.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A Cancer Trial's Unexpected Result: Remission in Every Patient
2022-06-05, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/05/health/rectal-cancer-checkpoint-inhibitor....

It was a small trial, just 18 rectal cancer patients, every one of whom took the same drug. But the results were astonishing. The cancer vanished in every single patient, undetectable by physical exam, endoscopy, PET scans or M.R.I. scans. Dr. Luis A. Diaz Jr. of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, an author of a paper published Sunday in the New England Journal of Medicine describing the results ... said he knew of no other study in which a treatment completely obliterated a cancer in every patient. "I believe this is the first time this has happened in the history of cancer," Dr. Diaz said. Dr. Alan P. Venook, a colorectal cancer specialist at the University of California, San Francisco, who was not involved with the study, said he also thought this was a first. A complete remission in every single patient is "unheard-of," he said. These rectal cancer patients had faced grueling treatments – chemotherapy, radiation and, most likely, life-altering surgery that could result in bowel, urinary and sexual dysfunction. Some would need colostomy bags. They entered the study thinking that, when it was over, they would have to undergo those procedures because no one really expected their tumors to disappear. But they got a surprise: No further treatment was necessary. "There were a lot of happy tears," said Dr. Andrea Cercek, an oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and a co-author of the paper. Another surprise, Dr. Venook added, was that none of the patients had clinically significant complications.

Note: Will this amazing treatment be suppressed, like so many others before it? Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A study gave cash and therapy to men at risk of criminal behavior. 10 years later, the results are in.
2022-05-31, Vox
https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/23141405/violence-crime-cbt-therapy-cash-s...

What if someone told you that you could dramatically reduce the crime rate without resorting to coercive policing or incarceration? it sounds too good to be true. But it's been borne out by the research of Chris Blattman, Margaret Sheridan, Julian Jamison, and Sebastian Chaskel. Their new study provides experimental evidence that offering at-risk men a few weeks of behavioral therapy plus a bit of cash reduces the future risk of crime and violence, even 10 years after the intervention. Sustainable Transformation of Youth in Liberia ... offered men who were at high risk for violent crime eight weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy. [Economist Chris] Blattman wanted to formally study just how effective this kind of program could be. He decided to run a big randomized controlled trial with 999 of the most dangerous men in Monrovia, recruited on the street. The 999 Liberian men were split into four groups. Some received CBT, while others got $200 in cash. Another group got the CBT plus the cash, and finally, there was a control group that got neither. A year after the intervention, the positive effects on those who got therapy alone had faded a bit, but those who got therapy plus cash were still showing huge impacts: crime and violence were down about 50 percent. 10 years later ... crime and violence were still down by about 50 percent in the therapy-plus-cash group. Blattman estimates that there were 338 fewer crimes per participant over 10 years. [The program] cost just $530 per participant. That works out to $1.50 per crime avoided.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Lincoln Crowley appointed Australia's first Indigenous supreme court justice
2022-05-26, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/may/27/lincoln-crowley-appoin...

Barrister Lincoln Crowley QC will become the first Indigenous judge to preside over an Australian superior court, after he was appointed to the supreme court of Queensland. Colleagues said Crowley, a well-regarded barrister and former crown prosecutor who was made Queen's Counsel in 2018, had broken a significant barrier for First Nations people. "It has taken a long time for Indigenous people in Australia to be appointed to any superior court and it's very significant that Lincoln Crowley is the first such appointment," said Tony McAvoy, who in 2015 became the first Indigenous Australian appointed senior counsel. "It is a matter of some significant shame and embarrassment for the legal professional in Australia that there are not more First Nations judicial officers through all levels of the court. "I have watched Lincoln rise through his career and he's always struck me as a very compassionate person and a fantastic lawyer and it comes as no surprise to me that the attorney-general of Queensland has appointed him to this position." Crowley, a Warramunga man ... was expelled from a private school in year 11 after a run-in with a teacher. "The deputy principal called me into the office one day and said to me: 'Your family is Aboriginal aren't they? They're the type that end up in jail'," he said. "He was picking on me and trying to put me down, basically saying I had no prospects in the future and that's where I was going to end up. "I remember thinking, 'you wait and see, mate'."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Israeli orchestra performs in Egypt for the first time in 40 years
2022-05-25, Times of Israel
https://www.timesofisrael.com/israeli-orchestra-performs-in-egypt-for-the-fir...

An Israeli orchestra has performed in Egypt for the first time in 40 years, surprising locals by playing Egyptian classics from the 50s and 60s. The event took place as part of Israel's 74th Independence Day celebrations at the Israeli embassy in Cairo, according to a Tuesday report by public broadcaster Kan. Ariel Cohen, the conductor and co-founder of the Firqat Alnoor orchestra, described the excitement of being able to perform in the Arab country, which signed a peace deal with Israel in 1979, but has seen relations remain frosty. "I couldn't believe it," Cohen said during an interview with the Kan public broadcaster. "I couldn't hold in my tears," he added, noting the warm welcome the group received wherever they went. "Egyptian music has always been a big part of my artistic life. Personally, performing there for me was a dream come true," Cohen said. "The Egyptian audience that attended the event were astonished to see an [Israeli] orchestra performing Egyptian music, and not pop or fusion, but the DNA of Egyptian music… and to play it as it was played in Egypt in the 50s or the 60s – they really appreciated it and complimented us. It was a great pleasure to perform in front of such an audience," he said. And while Cohen said he wasn't sure if music alone could create a warm relationship between Egyptians and Israelis, he said that "music, when it's done properly, can bring people together, and that's what we saw when we performed there."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The Joy Workout
2022-05-24, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/05/24/well/move/joy-workout-exercises-happiness....

It's no secret that exercise, even in small doses, can improve your mood. Researchers even have a name for it: the feel-better effect. And while any physical activity – a walk, a swim, a bit of yoga – can give you an emotional boost, we wanted to create a short workout video specifically designed to make people happy. What would a "joy workout" look like? I'm a psychologist fascinated by the science of emotion. I've also taught group exercise classes for more than 20 years. To design a happiness workout, I turned to the research I leverage in those classes, to maximize the joy people get from moving their bodies. Imagine fans erupting when their team clinches a playoff spot. Researchers have identified several movements like this that are recognizable in many cultures as inspired by joy: reaching your arms up; swaying from side to side, like concertgoers losing themselves in the music; other rhythmic movements, such as bouncing to a beat; or taking up more space, like dancers spinning, arms outstretched. These physical actions don't just express a feeling of joy – research shows they can also elicit it. The resulting eight and a half–minute Joy Workout lets you test these effects yourself. It leads you through six joy moves: reach, sway, bounce, shake, jump for joy and one I named "celebrate" that looks like tossing confetti in the air. I based these moves on research and on the movements that produce the most joy in my classes, among people of all ages and abilities.

Note: Watch a video of the the Joy Workout at the link above. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Counties Pledge to Break the Cycle Between Jail and Homelessness
2022-05-18, Bloomberg
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-05-18/the-costs-of-criminalizing...

San Francisco and Sioux Falls might seem to share little beyond an abbreviation, but the cities wrestle with a common problem: homelessness. Now the two regions are set to test a new approach to controlling homelessness by targeting the link between housing instability and incarceration. The Just Home Project, devised and funded by the MacArthur Foundation, and coordinated by the Urban Institute, will provide resources and technical assistance to four jurisdictions across the U.S. that struggle with different variations on the jail-to-homelessness cycle: South Carolina's Charleston County, Oklahoma's Tulsa County, South Dakota's Minnehaha County, and the city and county of San Francisco. The broader goal is to get counties to address the specific barriers that recently incarcerated individuals face when trying to access existing housing. "Homelessness, housing insecurity and participation in the criminal justice system are just simply deeply intertwined, in part because of the criminalization of homelessness itself," said Kelly Walsh, a principal policy associate at the Urban Institute's Justice Policy Center. Laurie Garduque, the director of criminal justice at the MacArthur Foundation, stresses that the initiative is designed specifically to support the jail population. Garduque hopes that learning from these local projects could help secure national-level solutions. "We think that if the barriers to housing can be addressed, the footprint of the criminal justice system will shrink," she said.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A nonspeaking valedictorian with autism gives her college's commencement speech
2022-05-12, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2022/05/12/1098506522/nonspeaking-valedictorian-autism-co...

She didn't say a word – and that only made her message resonate more powerfully. Valedictorian Elizabeth Bonker recently delivered the commencement speech at Rollins College in Florida, urging her classmates to serve others and embrace the power of sharing. Bonker, who is affected by nonspeaking autism, hasn't spoken since she was 15 months old. But thanks to an accepting attitude from her peers and teachers and help from technology, she has overcome many challenges and graduated at the top of her class at the Orlando-area school. Bonker used text-to-speech software to deliver the commencement address – an honor for which she was chosen by her fellow valedictorians. "I have typed this speech with one finger with a communication partner holding a keyboard," she said. "I am one of the lucky few nonspeaking autistics who have been taught to type. That one critical intervention unlocked my mind from its silent cage, enabling me to communicate and to be educated like my hero Helen Keller." In her speech, Bonker also evoked another hero: Fred Rogers, the Florida college's most famous alumnus. Last year, the school unveiled a statue of the man widely known as Mister Rogers. And it has long embraced his lessons. "When he died, a handwritten note was found in his wallet," Bonker said. "It said, 'Life is for service.'" She urged her classmates to rip off a piece of paper from their program, write those words down, and tuck the message away in a safe place.

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