Today's global round up of good news nuggets to brighten the day.
A couple of years ago, at the end of a long, dispiriting day, Andy Carter made a startling discovery. A retired scientist, the 65-year-old had joined 30 other amateur treasure hunters combing over a muddy farmer’s field in Norfolk, England. Most had begun to pack up after failing to find anything of significance. Suddenly, Carter’s metal detector pinged. He dug down into the mud to find a small gold coin. As it turned out, he had discovered a 23-karat gold coin known as a leopard florin. It was minted in 1344 under the rule Edward III and just sold for £173,600 (around $228,885). Definitely a good day out!
An estimated 30,000 Ukrainians temporarily living or studying in the US have been granted Temporary Protected Status (TPS) by the Department of Homeland Security, meaning they will not have to return home to a war-torn country. Ukrainians that were already in the US on 1 March will now be able to stay and work legally for 18 months without fear of deportation. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement, "In these extraordinary times, we will continue to offer our support and protection to Ukrainian nationals in the United States."
In a first for Egypt, a female judge has sat on the bench of the country’s top court. Radwa Helmi’s appearance at the courthouse in Cairo - almost, by chance, coinciding with International Women’s Day - is being seen as a significant step on the long road to gender equality in Egypt. She was one of 98 women appointed last year to sit on the bench of the State Council in Cairo, one of the main judicial bodies in the country of 106 million, but the first to actually do so.
Out And About
In cities across the world, volunteers are taking the elderly and people with disabilities out for spins on special tricycles to enjoy the great outdoors. Cycling Without Age began in Denmark in 2012, when two good-hearted people wanted to help the local elderly and less-able individuals get back on their bicycles. They designed a ‘trishaw’ with a two-person bench at the front where passenger could sit and enjoy the view. Now there are 2,700 chapters worldwide using well over 3,700 trishaws - and anyone can see the obvious benefits on the faces of people in the carriages.
Buildings, streets, and even an ice cream flavor have been named in honor of President Joe Biden. Now, he can add one more namesake to that list: an ancient ten-tentacled ocean animal. The discovery of Syllipsimopodi bideni, which lived around 328 million years ago, means these soft-bodied creatures appeared in the ocean far sooner than previously thought. It pushes back the fossil record of the vampyropods, the group of cephalopods containing octopus and vampire squid, by almost 82 million years. Its remains are exceptionally important, as the soft-bodied nature of cephalopods mean they rarely fossilise.
The scientist behind the Oxford Covid vaccine has urged the world to roll out a jab for the next pandemic virus in just 100 days. Speaking to Sky News, Professor Dame Sarah Gilbert said it took around 300 days from the identification of Covid-19 to the approval of the first vaccines but the response must be faster during a future pandemic. Professor Gilbert said: “We have learned a lot from Covid and we should now make sure we capitalise on that - see what worked well and what didn’t. We can go a lot faster.” That's good to know!
A 2019 study found that 40 percent of Spanish children aged 6-9 were over their recommended weight, and that advertising greatly influences their food and drink choices. So, Spain’s consumer affairs minister, Alberto Garzon, is going to ban advertisements for unhealthy foods that are aimed at children on TV, online, on social media, apps, cinemas, newspapers and radio. Anyone in position to influence children will be forbidden to market food or drink that is high in sugar, sodium, salt or fat.
Quote of the Day
"It’s true hard work never killed anybody, but I figure, why take the chance?"
On this Day
15 March 19990: The Congress of People's Deputies of the U.S.S.R. elected Mikhail Gorbachev to the newly created post of President of the Soviet Union.
Dive in Deeper
Then and Now
New York City changed rather a lot between 1911 and 2020.