Inspiring News Stories
Excerpts of Highly Inspiring News Stories in Major Media



Below are one-paragraph excerpts of highly inspiring news stories reported in the major media. Links are provided to the original stories on their major media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These inspiring news stories are listed with the stories most recently posted to the website listed first. You can explore the same list with the most inspiring stories listed first. See also a concise list providing headlines and links to a number of highly inspiring stories. May these articles inspire us to find ever more ways to love and support each other and all around us to be the very best we can be.


Note: This comprehensive list of inspiring news stories is usually updated once a week. See also a full index to revealing excerpts of key news articles on several dozen engaging topics.

A High School Where the Students Are the Teachers
2013-03-27, Time Magazine
Posted: 2015-04-12 19:36:33
http://healthland.time.com/2013/03/27/a-high-school-where-the-students-are-th...

If high school students took charge of their education with limited supervision, would they learn? A Massachusetts school is finding out. Sam Levin ... started the program in 2010. Frustrated with his public-high-school schedule and realizing that his friends weren’t inspired to learn, Levin complained to his mother about how unhappy he and his classmates were, to which she responded: “Why don’t you just make your own school?” And so he did. Levin quickly gained the support of his high school guidance counselor, Mike Powell, who remains the program adviser. After getting the O.K. from the school principal and superintendent, the duo were given the green light ... to embark on their experiment in 2010. The curriculum is designed by the students, [who] enroll for an entire semester, and with only a few exceptions ... do not take other classes. Each class has a mix of 10 students, some straight-A students and others who are on the verge of failing their classes. Three to four faculty advisers are available to guide the students and to provide advice. "Giving young people the chance to directly engage in their own learning is rooted in a tremendous amount of research [showing] that is actually how we learn best," says Scott Nine, the executive director of the Institute for Democratic Education in America (IDEA). "When we think about the world our young people live in, the core competencies of autonomy, belongingness and confidence are the building blocks of what we need."

Note: Learn more about this inspiring project in this Huffington Post article.




A Crowdfunding App for the Homeless, HandUp Raises $850,000
2014-07-16, Wall Street Journal Blog
Posted: 2015-04-12 19:34:52
http://blogs.wsj.com/venturecapital/2014/07/16/a-crowdfunding-app-for-the-hom...

A startup that’s been called “a Kickstarter for the homeless,” HandUp Pbc, has raised $850,000 in seed funding, co-founder and Chief Executive Rose Broome told Venture Capital Dispatch. Unlike giving cash to needy people on the streets, HandUp helps donors give money to homeless people who commit to using it to fulfill specific needs like rent, security deposits, food or health bills. Homeless advocates, or case managers who work in shelters, post profiles on HandUp.us on behalf of the homeless, accept donations via HandUp, then ensure the money is spent on what that person said he or she needed. To generate revenue, HandUp asks donors to pay an optional “support fee” of five dollars each time they make a contribution. If a donor doesn’t opt-in to pay that fee, the entirety of what they donate goes to the homeless person in need. Most homeless people do not or cannot maintain an online bank account or consistent Internet access. So HandUp’s approach helps them get access to online fundraising when they wouldn’t otherwise have the option. It also has the effect of helping non-profits and shelters validate that their clients’ needs are being met fully, and with transparency for donors. With the seed funding, Ms. Broome says HandUp plans to grow its five-employee team, scale beyond San Francisco to help the homeless, and develop partnerships with shelters and non-profits.

Note: Watch an inspiring three-minute CNN video on this great program.




How Gratitude Beats Materialism
2015-01-08, Greater Good
Posted: 2015-04-12 19:32:54
http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/materialism_gratitude_happiness

Material things are unlikely to boost our happiness in a sustained or meaningful way. In fact, research suggests that materialistic people are less happy than their peers. They experience fewer positive emotions, are less satisfied with life, and suffer higher levels of anxiety, depression, and substance abuse. How can we avoid falling into the unhappiness trap of materialism? One answer has been emerging from social science: Cultivate a mindset of gratitude. In the early 1990s, researchers Marsha Richins and Scott Dawson developed the first scale to measure materialism rigorously. People who score high on Drs. Richins and Dawson’s scale score lower on just about every major scale that scientists use to measure happiness. Earlier this year, Jo-Ann Tsang of Baylor University and her colleagues surveyed 246 undergraduate students to measure their levels of materialism, life satisfaction and gratitude. Their results ... show that as materialism increased, feelings of gratitude and life satisfaction decreased. The relationship between materialism and gratitude can run in the opposite direction. A 2009 study led by Nathaniel Lambert, now of Brigham Young University, found that inducing gratitude in people caused a decrease in materialism. Dr. Lambert and his colleagues were able to increase gratitude in their participants by instructing them to focus on appreciating the good things they had been given in life, then write about what came to mind.

Note: The complete article presents several approaches to cultivating gratitude in everyday life. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




"Forgiveness Is Liberating": Desmond Tutu On Healing A Nation's Racist Past
2014-12-14, Yes! Magazine
Posted: 2015-04-05 15:29:02
http://www.yesmagazine.org/peace-justice/forgiveness-is-liberating-desmond-tu...

In the mid-90s, the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission heard thousands of hours of testimony about human rights violations. The goal was to confront the crimes of apartheid while reconciling black and white South Africans who committed and suffered from them. Over the course of three years, more than 15,000 statements were taken. [Civil rights activist Angela] Davis hopes a similar process could help reconcile the wounds of deep, systemic American racism today. “To move toward a reconciled America, we have to do the work ourselves,” Davis wrote. So far, Davis’ piece has garnered overwhelming interest, with readers and leaders around the country offering to help establish such a commission. Here we offer a piece from the archives, an excerpt of [Archbishop Desmond] Tutu’s speech to the South African press club in 1997: This process has made a contribution to reconciliation, to healing, as the 1995 Promotion of National Unity and Reconciliation Act says. After the first hearing in East London, Matthew Goniwe’s brother came to me and said, “We have told our story many, many times already. But this is the first time that, after telling it, it is as if a huge weight has been lifted from our shoulders.” Now we will know what happened to the Cradock Four, the Pepco Three, Siphiwo Mtimkulu, Steve Biko, and others. Despite inquests and inquiries, all these truths had remained concealed. The TRC process has helped to expose the real truth, and this surely is helping to heal.

Note: Perhaps a truth and reconciliation commission would help to reveal and even heal all of the massive corruption taking place around the world. Read this article for more. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




Albuquerque teacher gets big surprise on ‘Ellen Show’
2015-03-19, KQRE (a leading Albuquerque, NM television news station)
Posted: 2015-04-05 15:26:23
http://krqe.com/2015/03/19/albuquerque-teacher-gets-big-surprise-on-ellen-show/

Sonya Romero has spent years helping students, and this week, Ellen DeGeneres gave her a big gift in return. Romero, a kindergarten teacher at Lew Wallace Elementary has gained international recognition for her generosity towards students. She always makes sure her students have clean clothes and food before they start their day. Thursday on the Ellen Show, Romero got a big surprise. “There’s a kindergarten teacher from Albuquerque. I want you to meet her, Sonya Romero come on down,” Ellen announced to the audience. Romero ... had no idea what would come next. On the show, Ellen played a video that Romero’s students and faculty all took part in. “I was speechless, speechless,” said Romero. “That to me is just absolutely priceless to hear what my school and the students had to say.” Lots of Romero’s kids have hard lives outside of school. Six months ago, she became a foster mom to two of them. When Ellen got wind of her story, she got Romero’s whole school involved. “We love you Ms. Sonya!” The whole school shouted, holding a sign for Ms. Sonya in the video played on the Ellen Show. “You’re an amazing woman,” Ellen said, teary eyed. But that wasn’t the end. Ellen presented Romero with a $10,000 check from Target, then another $10,000 check from Target, made out to Lew Wallace Elementary. After the show aired, Romero [said], "I'm glad that it gives teachers some exposure to what really goes on in our classrooms." For Romero, hearing from her kids, and knowing that she's helping them is what matters most.

Note: Watch an inspiring video on this amazing teacher.




1,000-year-old onion and garlic eye remedy kills MRSA
2015-03-30, BBC
Posted: 2015-04-05 15:23:52
http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-32117815

Scientists recreated a 9th Century Anglo-Saxon remedy using onion, garlic and part of a cow's stomach. They were "astonished" to find it almost completely wiped out methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, otherwise known as MRSA. Their findings will be presented at a national microbiology conference. The remedy was found in Bald's Leechbook - an old English manuscript containing instructions on various treatments held in the British Library. Anglo-Saxon expert Dr Christina Lee, from the University of Nottingham, translated the recipe for an "eye salve", which includes garlic, onion or leeks, wine and cow bile. Experts from the university's microbiology team recreated the remedy and then tested it on large cultures of MRSA. The leechbook is one of the earliest examples of what might loosely be called a medical textbook. It seems Anglo-Saxon physicians may actually have practised something pretty close to the modern scientific method, with its emphasis on observation and experimentation. Dr Lee said there are many similar medieval books with treatments for what appear to be bacterial infections. She said this could suggest people were carrying out detailed scientific studies centuries before bacteria were discovered. The team's findings will be presented at the Annual Conference of the Society for General Microbiology, in Birmingham.

Note: The recipe for the medieval remedy is available at the link above. For more see this CBS article. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




Replace the Gospel of Money: An Interview With David Korten
2015-02-20, Yes! Magazine
Posted: 2015-04-05 15:22:03
http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/together-with-earth/replace-the-gospel-of-m...

David Korten began his professional life as a professor at the Harvard Business School on a mission to lift struggling people in Third World nations out of poverty by sharing the secrets of U.S. business success. Yet, after a couple of decades in which he applied his organizational development strategies in places as far-flung as Ethiopia, Nicaragua, and the Philippines, Korten underwent a change of heart. In 1995, he wrote the bestseller When Corporations Rule the World, followed by a series of books that helped birth the movement known as the New Economy, a call to replace transnational corporate domination with local economies, control, ownership, and self-reliance. This month, Korten, who is also the co-founder and board chair of YES!, publishes a new book challenging readers to rethink their relationship with Earth—indeed, with all creation, from the smallest quantum particle to the whole of the universe. The world needs “a new story,” he says. Buying into the “Sacred Money and Markets” story that money is wealth and the key to happiness locks us into indentured servitude to corporate rule. It’s the traditional development model, or transnational capitalism, that damages Earth as a living community, including not just humans but all life forms. Control of money is the ultimate mechanism of social control in a society in which most every person depends on money for the basic means of living. The only legitimate purpose of the economy is to serve life, is to serve us as living beings making our living in co-productive partnership with living Earth.

Note: David Korten's new book is titled: Change the Story, Change the Future. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




Greek parliament adopts anti-poverty law despite EU row
2015-03-18, Yahoo News/AFP
Posted: 2015-03-30 17:10:08
http://news.yahoo.com/greece-hits-eu-opposition-humanitarian-law-042403842.html

The Greek parliament on Wednesday overwhelmingly adopted a "humanitarian crisis" bill to help its poorest people, ignoring apparent pressure from the European Union to halt the legislation. Greek government coffers are almost empty and [anti-austerity Prime Minister Alexis] Tsipras needs further financial assistance for his country, but he also wants to enact social laws that break with the austerity imposed by international creditors since 2010 as a condition of the bailout. His government's refusal to fall into line with eurozone partners over its massive bailout has angered not only EU powerhouse Germany, but Spain and Portugal as well. The Greek legislation calls for households that were cut off because they could not pay their bills to be given a capped amount of free electricity. Up to 30,000 households would also get a housing allowance and 300,000 people would receive food subsidies. The legislation also includes help for people who have lost their jobs in recent months and no longer have social security coverage. "When all indicators are in the red like unemployment, poverty, etc, we do what is necessary to tackle these problems," Greek Labour Minister Panos Skourletis told lawmakers.

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




The strange world of felt presences
2015-03-05, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-03-30 17:07:01
http://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/mar/05/the-strange-world-of-felt-pres...

On 20 May 1916, Ernest Shackleton, Frank Worsley, and Tom Crean reached Stromness, a whaling station on the north coast of South Georgia. They had been walking for 36 hours, in life-threatening conditions. They did not talk about it at the time, but weeks later all three men reported an uncanny experience during their trek: a feeling that "often there were four, not three" men on their journey. The "fourth" that accompanied them had the silent presence of a real person, someone walking with them by their side. Encounters such as these are common in extreme survival situations: guardian angels, guides, or even Christ-like figures have often been reported. We know them now as "third man" experiences, following a line in TS Eliot's poem, The Wasteland: "Who is the third who walks always beside you? When I count, there are only you and I together. But when I look ahead up the white road, there is always another one walking beside you." In his book The Third Man Factor, John Geiger collects together a wide range of third man stories, including accounts from mountaineers, sailors, and survivors of terrorist attacks. They all involve a strong impression of a felt presence ... which will often feel as if it has a spiritual or guiding purpose.

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




Chocolate consumption and Nobel Prizes: A bizarre juxtaposition if there ever was one
2012-11-20, Scientific American Blog
Posted: 2015-03-30 17:05:07
http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/the-curious-wavefunction/2012/11/20/choco...

What makes a Nobel Prize winner? There's several suggested factors: Perseverance? Good luck? Good mentors and students? Here’s one possible factor that I would have never imagined in my wildest dreams; chocolate consumption. Chocolate consumption tracks well with the number of Nobel Laureates produced by a country. At least that's what a paper published in the New England Journal of Medicine - one of the world’s premier journals of medical research - claims. The paper starts by assuming ... that winning a Nobel Prize must somehow be related to cognitive ability. It then goes on to describe a link between flavanols - organic molecules found among other foods in chocolate, green tea and red wine - and cognitive ability. From this idea the author basically jumps to the dubious and frankly bizarre question of whether chocolate consumption could possibly account for Nobel Prize winning ability. The hypothesis is testable, so the author decides to simply plot the number of Nobel prize winners per 10 million people in different countries counted from 1900-2011 vs the chocolate consumption in those countries. A plot of chocolate consumption vs number of Nobel Prizes reveals a strong correlation of 0.79. The most likely explanation for that correlation is that it's caused by a third factor.

Note: Check out the fascinating chart mentioned above. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




The key to our happiness is connection, not competition
2015-03-20, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-03-30 17:00:29
http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/mar/20/key-to-happiness-...

Charles Darwin is normally associated with the "survival of the fittest" theory. He also ... wrote that the communities most likely to flourish were "those with the most sympathetic members", an observation backed up by research that we are wired to care about each other. But we have such a strong cultural narrative about the selfish side of humanity that we adopt systems and behaviours that undermine our natural co-operative tendencies. This starts in schools, where the relentless focus on exams and attainment instills in young people the idea that success is about doing better than others. It continues in our marketing culture, which encourages conspicuous displays of consumption and rivalry. It's found at the heart of our workplaces, where employees compete with each other for performance-related rewards. This "get ahead or lose out" ethos [is] deeply flawed. In schools, helping young people to develop social and emotional skills [has] been shown to boost their performance. In workplaces, research ... shows that "givers" - people who help others without seeking anything in return - are more successful in the long term than "takers" - who try to maximise benefits for themselves, rather than others. For society as a whole, the World Happiness Report 2013, a major global study, found that two of the strongest explanatory factors for national wellbeing are levels of social support and generosity.

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




'Return To Life': How some children have memories of reincarnation
2015-03-16, Today
Posted: 2015-03-23 15:47:10
http://www.today.com/news/return-life-how-some-children-have-memories-reincar...

Ryan’s stories were truly legendary. His mother Cyndi said [that] when he was 5 years old, he confided in her one evening before bed. He said, "mom, I have something I need to tell you. I used to be somebody else.” The preschooler would then talk about “going home” to Hollywood. “His stories were so detailed and they were so extensive, that it just wasn’t like a child could have made it up,” she said. Cyndi said she ... had never really thought about reincarnation. She checked out books about Hollywood from the local library, hoping something inside would help her son make sense of his strange memories. “Then we found the picture,” she said. That photo ... was a publicity shot from the 1932 movie. “She turns to the page in the book, and I say ‘that’s me, that’s who I was,’" Ryan remembers. Finally she had a face to match to her son’s strange “memories,” giving her the courage to ask someone for help. That someone was Dr. Jim Tucker ... at the University of Virginia. [Tucker] has spent more than a decade studying the cases of children ... who say they remember a past life. [His] office contains the files of more than 2,500 children— cases accumulated from all over the world by his predecessor, Ian Stevenson. Tucker has [discovered some] intriguing patterns. For instance, 70 percent of the children say they died violent or unexpected deaths in their previous lives, and males account for 73 percent of those deaths— mirroring the statistics of those who die of unnatural causes in the general population. “There’d be no way to orchestrate that statistic with over 2,000 cases,” Tucker said.

Note: Don't miss the fascinating video of Ryan's story at the link above. His family and Dr. Tucker were able to confirm amazing details five-year-old Ryan described from his past life. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




Indian comic creates female superhero to tackle rape
2014-12-18, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-03-23 15:45:16
http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/dec/18/india-comic-superhero-tackle-rap...

The rape by six men of the 23-year-old Delhi medical student who later died of her injuries sparked national protests and changes to India’s rape laws. For film-maker Ram Devineni, founder of the publisher and film production company Rattapallax, it also led to Priya’s Shakti, a new comic for teenagers which Rattapallax says is “rooted in ancient matriarchal traditions that have been displaced in modern representations of Hindu culture”, and which is intended to support “the movement against patriarchy, misogyny and indifference through love, creativity and solidarity”. Illustrated by Dan Goldman, the comic is about to be unveiled at Mumbai Comic-Con. It tells the story of Priya, devoted to the goddess Parvati, and as a young girl, full of dreams of becoming a teacher. But she is told by her father to stop going to school, and to stay home and take care of the house. As she grows up, she is the victim of increasing sexual violence, until she is raped - and then thrown out of the family home. Parvati is horrified to discover what women on earth go through, and inspires Priya to speak out and spread a new message to the world: to treat women with respect, educate all children, and speak out when a woman is being mistreated. Priya, riding on a tiger, returns to her village. She is, said Devineni, “a new hero for a modern India”. Priya’s Shakti – Shakti is “the female principle of divine energy” – is available free online, and Rattapallax has printed 6,000 copies in Hindi and English for the convention and for educational distribution.

Note: For more, read this inspiring article in the Christian Science Monitor.




American Wins International Children's Peace Prize
2014-11-18, ABC News
Posted: 2015-03-23 15:43:32
http://abcnews.go.com/ThisWeek/american-teen-makes-history-wins-international...

Neha Gupta became the first ever American today to be awarded the Children’s International Peace Prize in The Hague, Netherlands. The prize is awarded annually to a child, anywhere in the world, for his or her dedication to children’s rights. Gupta began her astounding work when she was just a child herself, visiting her parents' native India nine years ago. Carrying out a family tradition of celebrating birthdays by delivering gifts to orphans, she was struck by the condition these children were living in. "The place was just really in shambles," Gupta told Saulny. "I didn't want to accept these things. These are things I wanted to fix." She moved to fix them quickly, any way that she could. Back home in Pennsylvania, she made a bold move, deciding to sell all of her toys to raise money for the orphans she had met in India. "We just put it out on our driveway and people came, bought things and it turned out to be such a successful event,” Gupta said. “From that one event we raised $700 and I’ve wanted to keep going.” Gupta kept going, selling crafts door to door and collecting corporate donations in her dad’s SUV. Nine years later, now an 18-year-old college student, she runs Empower Orphans, a global charity that has raised $1.3 million. The organization reaches orphans in the U.S. and abroad, helping to build classrooms, buy books, equip computer labs, pay for health exams, supply water and buy sewing machines to empower other young women to start their own businesses. Despite all of her extraordinary successes, Gupta describes herself as just an ordinary teenager who found her calling early in life. That bit of serendipity has touched the lives of more than 25,000 children so far.

Note: Don't miss an inspiring video on this beautiful woman and the way she is changing the world.




How to Raise Kids Who Aren’t Spoiled
2015-02-04, Greater Good
Posted: 2015-03-23 15:42:01
http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_raise_kids_are_not_spoiled

All parents want their kids to have the skills they need to thrive in the world. But, while most parents feel comfortable talking about the importance of safety, health, schoolwork, and relationships, when it comes to the importance of money, many fall silent. Perhaps that’s because money can bring up extremely strong emotions. How much we have or don’t have, and how our income compares to that of others, can be a source of shame—whether we perceive ourselves as having too much or too little. Parents often find themselves fighting over finances, leaving the impression on kids that money causes conflict. In my role as the personal finance columnist for The New York Times, parents often ask me for advice. Here are some tips: 1. Talk about money and your values around money. 2. Give children money to manage on their own. 3. Teach kids to spend wisely. 4. Put kids to work. 5. Teach kids the importance of giving. 6. Practice gratitude. While these tips aren’t foolproof, parents who follow them have a better chance of raising children with a wise relationship to money. It’s up to all of us to make sure our children understand our values and know how to save, spend, or give away money in a way that is consistent with those values. If we all approached the topic with more honesty and openness, we might avoid a future where children end up either crippled by debt or thinking that everything should come to them on a silver platter.

Note: The above was written by Ron Lieber, whose new book, The Opposite of Spoiled: Raising Kids Who Are Grounded, Generous, and Smart About Money, is about how parents can do a better job of teaching their kids about money. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




Philadelphia Pizza Lovers Pay It Forward One Slice At A Time
2015-01-14, NPR
Posted: 2015-03-16 14:17:46
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2015/01/14/377033772/philadelphia-pizza-love...

At Rosa's Fresh Pizza in Philadelphia, the shop is adorned with Post-it notes and letters. The messages are from customers who gave $1 so homeless members in the community could get a slice, which costs $1. The pay-it-forward pizza program started about a year ago, [owner Mason] Wartman says, when one paying customer asked if he could buy a slice for a homeless person. "I said, 'Sure.' I took his dollar and ran out and got some Post-it notes and put one up to signify that a slice was purchased," he recalls. Pay-it-forward pizza was born. Over the past nine months, Wartman says, clients have bought 8,400 slices of pizza for their homeless neighbors. He kept track of the prepaid slices with Post-it notes on the walls until he hit about 500 free slices. He now keeps track at the register. Wartman says the customer who started it all was inspired by a practice in Italy called "suspended coffee" where customers purchase an extra cup for someone who can't afford it. Pay-it-forward generosity isn't limited to Italian cafes or one Philly pizza shop. Even mega-chains, including the bakery and sandwich chain Panera, have gotten into the giving act. Other chains' pay-it-forward systems have grown organically. Starbucks Coffee Co. spokeswoman Sanja Gould says some people just offer to pay for the person behind them in line, while others "might load a certain dollar amount onto a Starbucks card and the store partners have it on hand and they keep adding to it as the line goes on." Wartman says ... people want to help but aren't sure what to do. "This is a super-easy way, a super-efficient way and a super-transparent way to help the homeless."

Note: Watch a great video on this inspiring pizza shop.




Indy council creates 'Homeless Bill of Rights'
2015-03-03, Indiana Star (One of the Indiana's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2015-03-16 14:15:48
http://www.indystar.com/story/news/politics/2015/03/02/indy-council-creates-h...

The City-County Council on Monday voted largely along party lines to create a "Homeless Bill of Rights," making Indianapolis one of the first cities in the country to do so. The ordinance, modelled after similar laws in Rhode Island and Illinois, establishes specific protections for the homeless, a vulnerable population that advocates say face pervasive discrimination in their daily lives. Among the protections: the right to "move freely in public spaces," such as sidewalks and public buildings; the right to equal treatment by city agencies; the right to emergency medical care; and the right to a "reasonable expectation of privacy" for their personal property, just as someone would have inside a home. Notably, it ... requires the city to give a homeless person 15 days notice before displacing him or her from a camp. The city also would have to store displaced people's belongings for 60 days and connect them with nonprofits that would provide them with transitional housing and "wrap-around services," such as medical care and employment assistance. [City Councilman LeRoy] Robinson said such services are vital — and less costly than arresting people for minor offenses to get them off the streets. "It is much more cost-effective to provide support services and assistance to those experiencing homelessness in our city, than to arrest them," Robinson wrote in an email to The Star.

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




Running on renewable energy, Burlington, Vermont powers green movement forward
2014-01-31, PBS
Posted: 2015-03-16 14:13:49
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/vermont-city-come-rely-100-percent-renewable-e...

Burlington recently announced that it now produces or gets more power than its citizens use. And it’s all coming from renewable sources of energy like wind and solar and hydroelectric. Ken Nolan helps run Burlington Electric, the local utility company that supplies power to the city’s 42,000 residents. Some might say, of course this is happening in Burlington — the town that’s often cast as a liberal, progressive haven. But Burlington — and Vermont at large — has plenty of economic reasons to try and do their part to tackle climate change: Vermont’s iconic, multi-million dollar industries — skiing and maple syrup — are as dependent on the climate as any industry in the U.S. And the state suffered hundreds of millions of dollars in damage from Hurricane Irene — the type of storm scientists say will grow in frequency unless we reduce our consumption of fossil fuels. Nolan says that switching from fossil fuel energy to renewable energy will likely save the city about $20 million dollars over the next two decades. What’s more, consumers haven’t been hit with a big price increase: while residential customers across the US have seen small but gradual increases in their utility bills over the years, Burlington’s rates haven’t increased since 2009. There’s nothing magic about Burlington in terms of where it sits. It was just a bunch of decisions made over ten years or more, to get towards renewable energy.

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




The greatest Sacramentan you’ve never heard
2014-12-20, Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, California's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2015-03-16 14:11:15
http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/marcos-breton/article4747...

John Emerson Moss is an unheralded giant in the capital of California. Moss [represented] Sacramento in Congress for 25 years – a career marked by one of the most noteworthy legislative records of the second half of the 20th century. Moss was the author and champion of the federal Freedom of Information Act, which gave any American the right to access federal records once routinely sealed by the most powerful forces in the American government. Because of Moss, there is the Consumer Product Safety Commission. He played a major role in enacting the Toy Safety Act, the Poison Package Control Act, the Federal Privacy Act. He was chief sponsor of the Clean Air Act. Moss was one of the first voices in government to come out against the Vietnam War, a position that put him squarely at odds with President Lyndon Johnson – one of the most politically powerful and vindictive men to occupy the Oval Office. A Democrat like Johnson, Moss’ opposition to Vietnam and his dogged pursuit of FOIA cost him what many politicians crave most – power. President Johnson was against the idea of opening federal records to the public and he fought Moss behind closed doors. Moss prevailed when Johnson bowed to pressure from newspaper editors and a growing mistrust of government. He signed FOIA into law the week of July 4, 1966. It was a momentous event. But there is no film of Moss standing behind Johnson as he signed FOIA into law because a grudging Johnson refused to have a public signing ceremony to mark the event.

Note: Moss’ 100th birthday falls on April 13, 2015. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.




No Regrets: Living with Dying
2015-03-04, Daily Good
Posted: 2015-03-08 22:48:34
http://www.dailygood.org/story/965/no-regrets-living-with-dying-kitty-edwards

With Stage 4 metastasized breast cancer, Patti ... wanted to know how to live life with no regrets. Out of Patti’s vision and sense of urgency, the No Regrets Project was born. Between radiation treatments, spinal surgery and a bucket list trip to Alaska, Patti wrote essays, talked with anyone who would listen, dreamed and created. In the end, she developed five simple, personal practices to help herself live life more fully: be grateful every day, trust – take the risk, courage to be me, choose joy, and love myself & share it. While the phrases may be simple, accomplishing them is not. The development of the No Regrets Project is Patti Pansa’s legacy to all of us. Each day, Patti wrote in her gratitude journal. The simplest things caught her attention. “I am grateful for a little bird sitting on a branch outside of my bedroom window,” “I love to feel the warmth in the sunlight crossing my bed,” and more. This practice of gratitude helped her to focus on the things that she appreciated most, rather than on her declining health and the difficult medical procedures that she endured. Patti learned that trust requires an element of surrender. With diminishing energy, she simply followed the flow of suggestions and referrals to find the resources that were needed in a short period of time. Patti spent the last five months of her life celebrating, sharing, creating, loving, and living. On October 23, 2013, under hospice care, Patti died at home with her family. She died with no regrets.

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