2017: More Good News you might have missed
January 01, 2018
Bad news isn't hard to find.
Hurricanes, wildfires, mass shootings, terrorist attacks. Bad news fills the front page, and good news is often relegated to the small print. But there is plenty of good news out there! Sometimes you just have to look for it. There are positive stories, hopeful stories, inspiring stories, and they’re all around —in your town, in your neighborhood, and all across the globe.
Just take a look at a few of the stories from 2017 that you might have missed . . .
University of Iowa: Football and Kids
The University of Iowa Children’s Hospital overlooks Kinnick Stadium, where the U. of Iowa Hawkeyes play football, and the university’s football team and its hospital have long supported each other. The Hawkeye’s “Touchdown for Kids” campaign has raised money for the children’s hospital for years, and the football team welcomes a “kid captain” from the hospital to join the team on the field during home games. This fall 2017 inaugurated a new tradition for the Hawkeyes fans. With the beginning of the football season, Hawkeyes fans made sure to let the children and families at the hospital know that they were supporting them as well as the team. After the first quarter of the game, thousands of fans turned toward the hospital and waved to the families watching from the windows of the hospital. CBS Sports
Giant Pandas are making a comeback
The number of giant pandas in the wild has been slowly but steadily increasing in recent years, and the panda has been reclassified as a “vulnerable” rather than an “endangered” species. The giant pandas are still at risk, however, and more conservation efforts will be needed to keep these incredible creatures off the endangered list. NBC News
Two more of the earth’s most magnificent species are making comebacks as well: the snow leopard and the tiger.
Speaking of comebacks, honeybee populations are on the rise
“Just over a decade ago, beekeepers began reporting disturbing declines in honeybee populations. Bees, they said, were leaving the hive and not returning. The phenomenon, now known as colony collapse disorder, is alarming not only because of the central role bees play in plant life around the world—and thus most other life—but also because no one knew why the decline was happening or how to stop it. “ Newsweek
However, new data are encouraging. In August 2017, the US Dept. of Agriculture released a report that said that honeybee populations are on the rise. There are an estimated 2.89 million bee colonies across the US, an increase of 3 percent in the last year.
Food For Fines
Lexington, Kentucky has found a creative and generous way to give back during the holidays. For the past four years, during the holiday season, the Lexington Parking Authority has accepted canned food donations in exchange for parking ticket fines. In its first three years, the city’s “Food for Fines” program collected 24,500 cans of food for the God’s Pantry Food Bank, and hopefully the 2017 collection was their largest yet. Food for Fines —what a great idea! Lexington, KY
Veteran Homelessness down 40% since 2011
Great strides have been made in the effort to fight homelessness in our veteran population. The percentage of homeless veterans is down 40% since 2011, and many communities have “effectively ended” homelessness among their veteran populations. Time
According to Veterans Affairs, three states and 57 communities across the US have announced an end to veteran homelessness. Veterans Affairs
“We know how to end homelessness among Veterans. Since 2014, more than 880 mayors, governors, and other state and local officials have answered the call of the Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness, pledging to do all they can to ensure their communities succeed. And it’s working.” US Interagency Council on Homelessness
As former HUD secretary Julian Castro said, ““We have an absolute duty to ensure those who’ve worn our nation’s uniform have a place to call home. While we’ve made remarkable progress toward ending veteran homelessness, we still have work to do to make certain we answer the call of our veterans just as they answered the call of our nation.” Good News Network
Ebola vaccine results —100% effective
A vaccine has been developed to effectively combat the deadly Ebola virus, and results have been remarkable. The West African outbreak of Ebola virus disease began in December 2013, infecting nearly 29,000 people and killing about one third of those. It was brought to an end in June 2016 through the hard work of local groups working with international teams of medical staff. Newsweek. Almost a year later, results from an Ebola vaccine, rVSV-ZEBOV, seem to show 100% effectiveness against the virus. In addition, the National Institutes of Health reported in October 2017 that final data from a large clinical trial of this vaccine showed that it had been safe and effective, providing immunity against Ebola for at least one year from initial vaccination.
National Institutes of Health
Looking for more stories like this?
NBC's Today Show has a website called Share Kindness, devoted to stories of people sharing kindness with one another. Check it out!