14 May 2016 – News, Stories and Ideas to Make the World a Better Place

WITADA Top 1014 May 2016
WITADA’s Weekly Top 10: News, stories and ideas to make the world a better place. 
In this week’s Top 10 we feature a number of stories about the global refugee crisis as well as the World Humanitarian Summit, civil unions in Italy, and much more!


1. This is a moving and important video depicting the fictional refugee experience for a young English girl, Lily,  forced to flee war-torn London. Save the Children released the video, ’Still the Most Shocking Second a Day’, earlier this week. The video is “trying to jolt people out of that reality because the things that you see the little girl Lily go through in the video are things that are happening to kids every single day in Syria right now”. In 2014 Save the Children made their first video featuring Lily – ‘Most Shocking Second a Day”.


2. The situation for refugees the world over seems to be getting worse rather than better. Kenya has recently announced that it will no longer host refugees despite pledging to uphold these principles. Kenya has over 463,000 refugees and it seems that the country now blames refugees for all the country’s issues. And in Turkey, despite reassurances from the government that Syrian refugees are being welcomed, both the United Nations and Human Rights Watch report that border guards are using excessing force, including shooting and beating refugees, to push them back over the border into Syria. Doctors Without Borders has a feature story on the decreasing of humanitarian support for refugees in Europe, ‘In 2016, Who Still Counts as Human?


3. The first ever World Humanitarian Summit is about to be convened in Istanbul (23-24 May) “to discuss how to halt the pernicious assault on international human rights and humanitarian law and to improve protection for people in need”. Human Rights Watch are releasing a series of papers to inform the discussions at this important summit and there are also many interesting and important articles and reports available for public viewing on the Summit’s web page.


4. Same sex civil union in Italy is now legal. However the victory is tainted by the removal of adoption rights in the legislation. The provision for adoption was removed after months of heated debate and the result is widely considered to be a much watered down version of the original bill.


5. Ever wondered how the rest of the world considers Australia’s refugee policies?  SBS has  featured stories from prominent international news sources such as BBC, Al-jazeera, CNN, The Atlantic, Quartz, Foreign Policy and Yahoo News. No surprise that the headlines include “The Intolerable Cruelty of Australia’s Refugee Deterrence Strategy”!


6. Noam Chomsky is an emeritus professor of linguistics at MIT and a well known critic of the United States, especially US foreign policy positions. In this article, ‘Who Rules the World: American is no longer the obvious answer’, he argues that America is losing its grip on international power. If you’re after something that will give you mind a workout, this is a provocative and interesting feature article.


7. This story from the United Nations features 9 humanitarians who are making marvellous contributions to the world. From a World Health Organisation worker in Lebanon to World Food Program workers Myanmar, these are stories of people doing what they can to make the world a better place.


8. The 17 May marks the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. A group of United Nations and human rights experts have released a statement calling for “an urgent end to the pathologization of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) adults and children”.


9. Did you know that five Solomon Islands have already disappeared? And that a recent study has found that this is a result of rising sea levels due to climate change and that six more islands are at risk?


10. Here at WITADA we love stories about individuals taking action to create social change in their own way. Jake is only 7 years old but he felt moved by the recent bombings of hospitals in Afghanistan. So he set out to raise some money for Médecins Sans Frontiers by doing a bike ride through a nature reserve. His target of $250 was bumped up to $1500 by some great supporters getting behind him. Love your work Jake!
Thanks for coming along to read our Top 10 this week. Hope to see you back again next time.