7 April 2018 – News, Stories and Ideas to Make the World a Better Place

7 April 2018
WITADA’s Weekly Top 10: News, stories and ideas to make the world a better place.
In this week’s Top 10 we put on our shoes and check out the Commonwealth Games (!!!), recycling, technology and plogging! And much more too of course!


1. We don’t often comment on sporting events here at WITADA but it seems the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast has highlighted our progress, and lack thereof, in relation to First Nations people of Australia. The opening ceremony has been celebrated by many because of its sensitive inclusion of Indigenous traditions. Certainly the smoking ceremony was amazing. And this is the first time that an Australian multi-sport event host city has ever adopted a Reconciliation Action Plan. But at the same time, Indigenous people have staged rolling protests over the Gold Coast against the Commonwealth Games drawing international attention to Australia’s colonisation and the multiple injustices to Indigenous people then and still now.


2. And while we’re on Commonwealth Games stories, check out the wonderful Pita Taufatofua from Tonga who has used his position at the Games to raise awareness about climate change, which has had such devastating impacts on his home country.


3. Here’s some good news from Chad. After several years of effort Amnesty International has secured the release of Tadjadine Mahamat Babouri. He was detained after posting some videos on Facebook criticising the government’s management of public funds.


4. Pictures really do tell a story in a way that words can not depict, as these next two picture essays from The Guardian depict. In this story Rohingya refugees reflect on what they most value – in pictures.


5. In this picture essay from The Guardian we see the heartbreaking situation for Somali refugee women in Indonesia.


6. The ABC is reminding us of an amazing environmental victory that occurred in the 1980s in Victoria’s Phillip Island. The short story – penguins won and land owners lost! With what is believed to be the world largest colony of little penguins, the increasing human population on the island saw the rapid decline in penguin numbers, so the Victorian Government purchased the town for conservation purposes – in what is still considered to be a world first! While for landowners it has been understandably distressing and stressful, for penguins, and many other species, it has been a huge success with penguin numbers grown from 12-14,000 in 1984 to 36,000 now.


7. Fancy a pizza at home on a Friday night? Well the ABC says we need to be careful about what we do with that pizza box it came in. It seems that many of us remain confused about what we can and cant recycle– because it is confusing! Not only do different councils have different requirements, if your pizza box has grease on it, it’s a no-go for recycling. But your compost bin or worm farm might find it quite tasty! If you’re interested in some good info about what is and isn’t recyclable and why, check out the Planet Ark site Recycling Near You.


8. And relatedly, The Guardian has an article on the complexities of technology– the workers in developing nations who make our products and the pollution and environmental impacts as well! It’s a sobering read – but with some ideas about how we might minimise the negative  impacts.


9. Fancy going out for some jogging on the weekend? No! Go plogging instead! Plogging is the new fitness craze from Scandinavian countries where we pick up litter as we jog! Get into it!


10. Here’s a lovely story to leave you this week. It’s the story of Nhill, a town in western Victoria who have opened up their homes and hearts to some of the many Karen-Burmese refugees arriving in Australia– who now make up 10% of the population of Nhill! And as always, it’s win win for everyone involved.


Great to have you with us this week. See you next week!