Inevitably, every “Year in Review” article or TV news segment you see will devote all of its time to tales of death and destruction. To counter that, here are some good things that happened in 2015:
10 Good Things That Happened in 2015
Phoenix, Arizona has made it mandatory for pet stores to only sell rescue animals — Animals in puppy mills are bred for profit with little regard for the health of the dog. Many of the dogs live out their lives in cages, never knowing what it’s like to get a cuddle, a belly rub, or to step outside in the grass. Phoenix, and the 59 other cities with similar laws, hope to curb the demand for puppy mills, thus forcing the mills to close down.
Stephen Colbert shocks South Carolina schools by funding every single teacher-requested grant — Colbert partnered with Share Fair Nation and ScanSource to fund nearly 1,000 projects for more than 800 teachers at over 375 schools, totaling $800,000.
First wolf pack found in California in nearly a century — A gray wolf pack has established itself in Northern California, the first family of wolves known in the state in nearly 100 years.
France makes it illegal for supermarkets to destroy edible food — The country’s National Assembly unanimously voted in new laws that will force chains to donate discarded food to charity or allow it to be turned into animal feed, compost or energy.
Israel ministers approve mandatory Arabic studies from first grade — “When the Jewish population will understand Arabic, the way the Arab public understands Hebrew, we will see better days.”
Baby Tortoises Born on Galapagos Island for First Time in 100 Years — During a survey of giant tortoises on one Galapagos island, conservationists found evidence of the first hatchlings to survive in the wild in over a century. The exciting find was the direct result of a rat eradication campaign completed two years ago on Pinzón, when helicopters criss-crossed the island dropping rat bait, which was non-toxic to the native flora and fauna.
Researchers have developed a blood test that can accurately diagnose, from a single drop of blood, if a person has cancer, with 96% certainty for most cancer types — Current cancer detection methods usually rely on scans and tissue biopsies, which are time consuming, difficult and often expensive. The ability to detect cancer in the blood represents a major advantage for the early diagnosis and detection of cancer cells.
Gene editing saves girl dying in UK from leukaemia in world first — For the first time ever, a person’s life has been saved by gene editing. One-year-old Layla was dying from leukaemia after all conventional treatments failed. Layla’s doctors got permission to use an experimental form of gene therapy using genetically engineered immune cells from a donor. Within a month these cells had killed off all the cancerous cells in her bone marrow.
Uber and Lyft to offer free rides to veterans for job interviews — Ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft donate tens of thousands of free trips to veterans for transportation to work, job interviews and other critical needs. The move is part of a broader effort by the White House’s Joining Forces initiative to help end homelessness among veterans, and encourage corporate partners to fill the unmet needs of America’s military families.
Muslims save Christians’ lives by shielding them during an extremist attack on a bus in Kenya — A group of Kenyan Muslims travelling on a bus ambushed by Islamist gunmen protected Christian passengers by refusing to be split into groups. They told the militants “to kill them together or leave them alone.”