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

WITADA Top 1028 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 cover a range of stories from National Reconciliation Week to refugees, child labour, women’s rights, and much more!


1. Our ‘must see’ story for this week features the work of French photographer, Patrick Willocq, who has created the most amazing pictures from the experiences of children who have fled from Syria and Burundi. The pictures use ‘personalised theatre sets’ where the children create a picture to depict their experiences. These are very powerful and moving images.


2. Today marks the beginning of National Reconciliation Week for 2016. The theme for this year is ‘Our History, Our Story, Our Future’. You can check out their web site for coverage of a range of activities occurring near you throughout the week. You can also check out the NITV web site for their coverage of events and issues.


3. Did you know that 80% of people worldwide would willingly welcome refugees? Amnesty International has conducted a survey of more than 27,000 in 27 different countries and 4 out of 5 people said that they would welcome refugees in their country.


4. Human Rights Watch has just released a new report about child labour practices in tobacco farms in Indonesia. This is a widespread practice and there are calls for the Indonesian government to introduce measures to regulate this industry and for companies to be sure that their suppliers are not engaging child labour. The report, ‘The Harvest is in my Blood: Hazardous child labour in tobaccos farming in Indonesia‘, documents the serious health consequences for these children “nausea, vomiting, headaches, or dizziness, all symptoms consistent with acute nicotine poisoning from absorbing nicotine through their skin”.


5. In 2014 Amnesty International began their campaign ‘My Body My Rights’ – “the campaign is founded on the principle that we all – women and men – have the right to make decisions about our health, body, sexuality and reproductive lives without fear or force”. Here’s an update about the 9 key achievements so far, including influencing Spain, Ireland and El Salvador on decisions about abortion.


6. We have featured some stories in the past few weeks about the World Humanitarian Summit. The United Nations say that this has set a new course for humanitarian action in the world. However Médecins Sans Frontières has a different view and refused participation at the Summit. They have prepared an excellent overview of the very complex issues involved in international aid work.


7. Amnesty International Australia now do a Weekly News Wrap and it’s pretty good. You can check it out here or sign up to receive it in your inbox.


8. This is an amazing image – a sculpture by Isaac Cordal titled ‘Follow the Leaders’. The Climate Council and many others see it as a depiction of the inevitability of climate change if our political leaders don’t act now.


9. New Internationalist has a wonderful story about Maxima Acuña, a farmer from the Yanacocha region of Peru where the largest gold mine in Latin America has been operating since 1993. She has recently won the 2016 Goldman Environmental Prize for her work in resisting the ongoing operations of the mine. Her story of resistance is inspirational.


10. Here’s some local inspiration to end our Weekly Top 10. Simon Doble from Brisbane has invented a solar light, the Solar Buddy, to assist refugees and children to light up the inside of their tents – and it runs for about 10 hours. There are nearly 5 million deaths every year from energy poverty caused by people using dangerous methods of heating such as kerosene or firewood.


Great to have your company again this week. Hope you can join us next week.