Brighton has opened its first-ever night shelter specifically for LGBTQIA+ people.
Tell me more.
The shelter will run for 10 weeks as part of a pilot scheme to highlight just how badly affected the UK’s LGBTQIA+ population is by homelessness – and how important it is to have safe spaces to help them.
The shelter opened on January 23rd 2023 and has 10 beds available on a referral-only basis.
How does it work?
People can access the shelter for anywhere from a couple of nights to two weeks, and staff at the shelter will help them find longer-term accommodation.
The shelter provides hot food and showers, beds and communal spaces, as well as access to resources to help people fleeing domestic violence and more.
How is it being set up?
A number of charities have come together to set up the shelter in the UK’s ‘gay capital’.
The largest cause of blindness worldwide is cataracts, a cloudy region on the lens of your eye. They become increasingly common as we get older – more than half of all Americans over the age of 80 have some form of cataracts.
The condition can be cured with a 10-minute surgery, but the issue is that the procedure can be incredibly expensive, ranging anywhere from a minimum of $3,000 to $5,000 per eye.
“When patients go into surgery, there’s a chance that they can get their life back,” Donaldson, who is the most-followed individual YouTuber in the world with 131 million subscribers, says in the video.
“I wanted to provide this to as many people as possible.”
There has been a huge breakthrough in creating a vaccine for breast cancer.
Amazing! Tell me more.
Cancer is an incredibly difficult thing to treat – because it comes from our own cells uncontrollably mutating. There are even many different types of breast cancer, and each one responds differently to treatment.
You heard us! Today is National Hedgehog Day and, while it’s important to celebrate these adorable little critters, it’s also a call to action to make sure that they are protected.
Rural hedgehog numbers have fallen by between 30-75% since 2000 and, while urban populations are beginning to stabilise thanks to human intervention, there’s still a lot that needs to be done to protect these walking pinecones.
Why do we have National Hedgehog Day in the first place?
According to Tommy Wilde from floofmania.com: “The story goes that ‘hedgehog day’ goes as far back as the Roman period where people kept an eye on the hedgehog’s hibernation pattern and used it as an indicator to predict spring.
“The idea was, that if a hedgehog came out of hibernating on February 2nd and didn’t see its own shadow, it would go back into hibernation… on the other hand, if it did see its own shadow, it would come out of hibernation, and it would be a sign that spring would start early!”
Are hedgehogs really that important?
Grace Johnson, Hedgehog Officer for Hedgehog Street says: “Hedgehogs have been a part of our cultural heritage for centuries (everyone knows and loves Beatrix Potter’s Mrs Tiggy-Winkle!), but they’re also a vital part of our ecosystem.
How do we help protect hedgehogs?
According to Grace, one of the best ways to help is to make a Hedgehog Highway (a small 13cm square gap in or under a garden boundary), which allows hedgehogs to travel between gardens looking for food, shelter and mates.
National Braille Press has been working on and has made a name for itself providing reading materials that blind and hard-of-seeing people can read.
“Braille is literacy by definition for blind or low vision person. If they don’t have that skill it’s hard to learn sentence structure and grammar and becoming more independent in life,” said Brian MacDonald, President and CEO of the Braille National Press.
With that in mind, the National Braille Press started a children’s book club to help kids that might not be able to see still learn to read. Every month, the organization sends out classic children’s books with custom braille pages put together by staff and volunteers at their facility.
“We promote literacy for blind children through outreach programs and we encourage the teaching of braille to blind children by providing age-appropriate braille reading and support materials for caregivers and educators,” they write on their website.
Beyond children’s books, the National Braille Press is the largest producer of training materials, information pamphlets, and even tests in braille for the United States.
“Nothing substitutes for the ability to read. For blind people, braille is an essential tool in the process of becoming literate,” the NBP writes.
Youth mental health is declining in the United States and while much of the blame can be leveled at the pandemic, the trend was still visible for over a decade beforehand.
That trend is exacerbated in Oregon which finds itself as one of the worst states in terms of mental health care accessibility for teens.
One organization, YouthLine is trying to address that and make a dent in the youth mental health crisis.
The organization has a teen-to-teen system where teenage volunteers help provide crisis support to other teens that call in. YouthLine is part of the larger LinesForLife that helps provide crisis lines to the whole of Oregon.
What else do they do to support?
Beyond their crisis line, they also operate an outreach program to destigmatize mental health in the region.
On top of that, they also maintain a massive list of resources for everything from personal empowerment to COVID-19 help.
“Empowering young people is at the heart of what we do at YouthLine,” they write on their website.
“Our programs are designed to elevate youth voices and equip youth with the tools and skills to manage their own well-being and offer help to others.”