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Good News Tuesday for May 17, 2022: Reversing Deafness Due to Aging, Aerobic Digester in The Bronx, Sheep Rescued from Rooftop, Reading for Money, and the Commencement Speech by a Nonspeaking Valedictorian with Autism

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Hope for Reversing Deafness Due to Aging

Scientists have overcome a major hurdle in reversing deafness due to aging with the discovery of a master gene that can change ear cells into either outer or inner sensory hair cells. The following article from the Good News Network explains more and contains this lovely quote describing the coordinated movement of the inner and outer cells: “It’s like a ballet… The ear is a beautiful organ. There is no other organ in a mammal where the cells are so precisely positioned with micrometric precision.” Professor Jaime Garcia-Anoveros. Click HERE for details.

Aerobic Digester at NY Housing Development Converts Food Waste to Fertilizer

A new community housing development in the Bronx will include an on-site aerobic digester that can turn 1,100 pounds of food scraps into 220 pounds of high-quality fertilizer every day. You can learn more about it from the Good News Network.

Sheep Rescued from English Rooftop

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue built a bridge to rescue five sheep from an English rooftop. Here’s more from the Good News Network.

Company Wants to Pay People to Read Novels and Take Notes

Newsweek reports the company Words Related wants to pay people to read books and take notes on specific details. The current focus is on the representation of women in modern novels. Click here to learn more.

“Life is for Service,” the Commencement Speech by the Nonspeaking Valedictorian with Autism

College graduate Elizabeth Bonker, who has autism and does not speak, was one of four valedictorians at Rollins College, the alma mater of Fred Rogers. Her valedictorian peers voted for her to give the commencement speech. You can read more about Elizabeth Bonker from CNN. Here’s a video of her speech:

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Good News Tuesday for May 10, 2022: Sea Lion Pups, Decarbonizing Scooters, AI Testing, and Prosthetic Arms (x2)

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Watching Sea Lion Pups in New Zealand

Volunteers in New Zealand are “babysitting” endangered sea lion pups. Meet one teen volunteer and read more about sea lion history in this article from CNN.

Decarbonizing Scooters

The Taiwanese company Gogoro has created a system to convert polluting scooters to electric with battery swapping stations. Here’s the story and podcast from Voltz.

Artificial Intelligence is Gradually Replacing Animal Testing

The company Smarter Sorting realized they could use a computational model to determine substance toxicity, “…which is not only faster, more cost effective, but also more humane,” says CEO Jacqueline. Claudia. Read about how AI can help reduce suffering from animal testing from FAST Company.

Teenager Invents a Mind Controlled Prosthetic Arm

High school student Benjamin Choi created a “non-invasive, mind-controlled robotic arm … able to withstand weights up to about four tons…. And it only costs around $300 to manufacture.” Read this fascinating story from Smithsonian Magazine.

And in related news….

8-Year-Old Beknur Gets a News Prosthetic Arm made from Legos

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Good News Tuesday for May 3, 2022: Free Gym Memberships for Teens, Turning Sewage into Green Energy, a Congolese Nun with Special Skills, and the Mysterious Journey of a One-Eyed Cat

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Planet Fitness Offers Free Summer Memberships to High School Students

Teenagers 14-19 can work out for free at Planet Fitness this summer. If they register early, they’ll have a chance to win a scholarship. Younger teens can sign up with a parent. According to their website map, Planet Fitness has gyms all over world. You can read more about it here.

Oregon Town Turns Sewage into Green Energy

Treating wastewater consumes a lot of energy, but a town in Oregon is turning wastewater to green energy. The process “creates heat for five of the buildings on site and an estimated 4,324 megawatts of electricity, providing about half of the facility’s energy usage.” I learned a lot from this article from Reasons to be Cheerful.

Congolese Nun Creates and Maintains Hydro-electric Plant

A Congolese nun became an electrician and raised money so her town would have more consistent electricity.  Through her work, Sister Alphonsine Ciza helps provide reliable electricity for convent, a church, two schools, and a medical clinic. Here’s more from the Good News Network.

One-Eyed Cat Shows Up on an Offshore Oil Rig after Missing for Five Years

Here’s a mystery with a happy ending. A friendly black cat named Dexter went missing five years ago. Turns out he’d been living at a prison in Scotland where he was fed and loved by staff and inmates. Dexter had a habit of hanging out in shipping containers and was accidentally shipped to an offshore oil rig in the North Sea. The folks at the oil rig put his picture on Facebook which got him shipped back home to his original owner who plans to take him to visit the prison.

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Good News Tuesday for April 26, 2022: Defending Lions, A Miniature Heart, Teacher of the Year, and a Very Supportive Dad

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The Lion Defenders of Tanzania

Lions are classified as vulnerable in Tanzania. But people and livestock are at risk from lions. A project called Lion Landscapes has developed innovative ways to protect lions and help villagers, including a team of Lion Defenders of the Barabaig tribe who track lions to let herders know where the safest grazing areas are. Here’s more from CNN’s Good Stuff.

Miniature Heart Designed to Help in Treatment Research

 A miniature heart replica, built by a Boston University team, will help with heart disease research and treatment. The “mini-pump” is roughly the size of a postage stamp and made from nanoengineered parts and human heart tissue. Here’s more from Boston University (via my 1440 Daily Digest).

Teacher of the Year

There are many excellent teachers all over the world. This one, Kurt Russell of Ohio, was named 2022 “Teacher of the Year” in the US. He talks about engaging students for a diverse education in this video from CBS.

Supportive Dad: She’s Gonna be a Nurse!

Want to see some happy tears? Just watch Shannon Rose and her dad, Mark, as they find out about Shannon’s nursing board exam:

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Good News Tuesday for April 19, 2022: Mobile Medics, Cancer Cell Research, Storing Solar Energy, and A Pup is Rescued from Ukraine Rubble

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Nurse from Alaska Leads Mobile Medics

Teresa Gray, a paramedic-turned-nurse from Alaska, created the nonprofit Mobile Medics International. She and several volunteers traveled to Romania last month where they provided care and comfort to hundreds of Ukrainian refugees. Read more about Teresa and the volunteers from CNN Heroes.

Cancer Cells Killed by Fungus-Cannabinoid Extracts in Cell Research

In cell model experiments at Haifa University, a combination of specific fungus and cannabinoid extracts killed 100% of pancreatic cancer cells without damaging normal cells as reported by this article from the Good News Network.

Long Term Storage of Solar Energy

Euronews reports: “In 2017, scientists at a Swedish university created an energy system that makes it possible to capture and store solar energy for up to 18 years…. Now the researchers have succeeded in getting the system to produce electricity by connecting it to a thermoelectric generator.” Here’s the story from euronews.green

Pets Matter, too

Thank you to the all rescue workers, especially in Ukraine, for their hard work, including saving this man’s pup buried under rubble.

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Good News Tuesday for April 12, 2022: Resort to House Ukrainian Refugees, Bi-National Park on the US – Mexico Border, Adoption Letters for Shelter Dogs, and the First Black Woman on the US Supreme Court

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Canadian Couple Converts Resort into Ukrainian Refugee Housing

Owners of a nature resort in British Columbia were planning to create an event space and gallery, but renovations are on hold to prepare housing for 100 Ukrainian refugees.  The first 19 people are expected to arrive in about two weeks. Here’s more from The Good News Network.

A Bi-national Park is Planned for the Border of US and Mexico

Instead of a huge concrete and steel wall, a bi-national river park is planned for the US – Mexico border. The sister cities of Laredo Texas and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas will be working together to create an ecological restoration project along each side of the Rio Grande River. GoodGoodGood has the details HERE.

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Adoption Letters for Dogs, and one Cat

Second grade students wrote persuasive letters with drawings to help shelter dogs (and one cat) get adopted. I’m glad these kids are learning about adopting pets from shelters. Here’s more from Good Morning America.

First Black Woman on the US Supreme Court

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was confirmed Thursday to become the first Black woman to serve on the US Supreme Court. The following video highlights the significance of the confirmation. It’s a very inspiring video except for the negative questioning by opponents from 5:30 to 7 minutes in case you want to skip over that part and focus on the good news.

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Good News Tuesday for April 5, 2022: Anti-Lynching Bill becomes Law, Saving a Train with a Sari, High School Diploma at 101, and Flamingo Freedom

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US Anti-lynching Act Becomes Law

Last week, US President Biden signed the Emmett Till anti-lynching act into law. Good Morning America reports: “Under the bill, an offense can be prosecuted as a lynching when the offender conspires to commit a hate crime that results in someone’s death or serious bodily injury under this bill. This includes kidnapping and aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to kidnap, abuse, or kill.” The bill was named for a 14 year old African American boy who was lynched in 1955 after being accused of offending a white woman in a Mississippi store. You can read more about the act and its background in this article from Good Morning America.

Woman Waves Red Sari to Stop Train from Going Over Broken Tracks

After seeing a break in the train tracks, Omvati Devi of India waved her red sari in front of an approaching train to warn the driver of danger. Read more from the Good News Network.

101-Year-Old Man Receives High School Diploma

 On March 19, Merrill Pittman Cooper finally received his high school diploma at the age of 101. Mr. Cooper attended Storer College in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, from 1934 to 1938, but had to drop out during his senior year for financial reasons. After a “long and accomplished career in the transportation industry,” Mr. Cooper visited the school, which is now part of a National Historical Park, and expressed regret over not earning a diploma. CNN has more about Mr. Cooper getting his diploma, HERE.

A Flamingo Who Escaped a Kansas Zoo in 2005 was Recently Spotted in Texas

A flamingo named Pink Floyd had not yet had his wings clipped when he and a friend escaped a Kansas zoo 17 years ago. Unfortunately, the friend went north and has not been seen, but Pink Floyd appears to be alive and well in Texas.

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Good News Tuesday for March 29, 2022: Humanity and Hope for Ukraine, Philanthropist Giving Away Half her Fortune, Music & Mental Health, and Finally a Gold Medal for Black Women who Served in WW2

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Stories of Humanity and Hope for Ukraine

The Good News Network has collected 8 of many good news stories coming out of Ukraine. One of my favorites is #3 “Ukraine Joins European Power Grid, Ending Its Dependence on Russia.” Other stories include helping a perinatal center in Kharkiv, World Central Kitchen, a Russian and Ukrainian chef cooking to raise money for UNICEF, animals, and the Italian Government plans to rebuild the Mariupol Theater. For details, visit The Good News Network.

Habitat for Humanity gets $436 million from Mackenzie Scott, and that’s not all.

Mackenzie Scott donated $436 million to Habitat for Humanity. The third wealthiest woman in the US was previously married to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. She is now married to a high school science teacher, Dan Jewett. The Habitat donation was part of Dan and Mackenzie’s pledge to give away most of their wealth. For details, see this article from AP. The day after I read about the Habitat donation, I saw this NBC article reporting another round of donations. So far, Ms. Scott has given away more than $12 billion in four rounds of funding.

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Music is Just as Powerful as Exercise in Improving Mental Health

It might not come as a surprise, but it’s still good to find out that music is just as good for mental health as exercise. Makes me want to put on some dancing music! Here’s the evidence gathered by Science Alert.

Congressional Gold Medal Awarded to Black Women’s Unit Who Served in WW2

On March 14, US President Biden signed a law awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to the women of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion who served in WW2. “The unit traveled to Great Britain in 1945, surviving encounters with Nazi U-boats and a German rocket explosion along the way, before spending months sorting through mail and packages stacked to the ceiling in unheated warehouses…” Here’s more from CNN plus a video below.

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Good News Tuesday for March 22, 2022: Elephant Sanctuary Benefits Community, New Technology for People with Paralysis, Salvaging Pieces of Old Buildings, and Amellia Anisovych sings the Ukrainian National Anthem

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Elephant Sanctuary Benefits Community

Supply chain issues dried up the flow of baby formula for orphaned elephants at the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary in Kenya, so the staff started to feed the baby elephants goats milk from local herds. Survival rates improved and the money that used to buy formula is now staying in the local community. If fact, Reteti is the first elephant orphanage in Africa to be owned and run by members of the local community. CNN has heartwarming photos and more about this special sanctuary.

Paralyzed Patients Use Smartphones, Computers and Control Wheelchairs with New Technology

A new device enables patients with paralysis use head and tongue movements use smartphones and computers and to control their own power wheelchairs. Georgia Tech shared the results of a study involving 17 wheelchair users living with tetraplegia—a spinal cord injury that affects the arms, hands, trunk, legs, and pelvic organs. Here’s more from the Good News Network.

Salvaging Old Buildings to Build New Ones in Ohio

Too often, old buildings are demolished quickly and loaded off to landfills, but in Cleveland, Ohio, people are carefully dismantling old buildings to re-use the materials in constructing new buildings. Read about how they’re doing it at Good Good Good

Amellia is Safe in Poland and Still Singing

Amellia Anisovych, the seven-year-old who sang “Let it Go” from a bomb shelter in Ukraine, is now safe in Poland. On Sunday night, she sang the Ukrainian National Anthem, “Shche ne vmerla Ukraina” (“Ukraine Has Not Yet Perished”) at a concert to raise money for her country.

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Good News Tuesday for March 15, 2022: Pep Talks from Kindergarteners, South Korea’s Floating Solar Blossoms, India’s Solar Dehydrators, and a No-Kill Shelter in Poland is Saving Animals from Ukraine

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Pep Talks from Kindergarteners

There’s a hotline where you can get pep talks from kindergarten students. The program was put together with help of California teachers Jessica Martin and Asherah Weiss. I called the number in the article linked below and enjoyed hearing the positive young voices. Option #2, “Words of Encouragement”, was my favorite, with option #1 a close second. Here are the details from NPR.

Floating Solar Panels Generate Enough Electricity for South Korea

In South Korea, 92,000 solar panels, in the shape of plum blossoms float in a reservoir and generate enough electricity for 60,000 people—more than the country’s population. Take a look and read more from The Good News Network.

Saving Food with the Sun

 Farming households in India are earning extra money by dehydrating food that goes unsold by putting it through solar food dehydrators. 40,000 tons of food is being saved with the process. The Good News Network has the story.

Polish Shelter Rescues and Treats Animals from Ukraine

Hundreds of animals have been rescued and cared for at this no-kill shelter in Poland. Staff of the shelter in Poland drive into Ukraine to rescue the animals and take care of them.

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