The shoe made from carbon emissions

It’s no secret that more of us are being conscious where we shop – we’re aware of the climate crisis, we’re aware of the hardships many people experience, and we want companies to be aware of this, too.

And many of them are – because more seem to be committing to green climate pledges, supporting charities through their profits, and aligning with the goals that aim to make our world a happier and healthier place to live.

So each week, we highlight the ones doing their bit.

1. Bank pledges to stop funding fossil fuels

Bank with Lloyds? (Yep, us too). Well, the Lloyds Banking Group announced it would stop funding new oil and gas projects. And it’s the first major UK bank to commit to this. 

In a statement, Lloyds said: “We will not provide financing to new clients in the oil and gas sector unless it is for viable projects into renewable energies and transition technologies, and clients have credible transition plans.” Good stuff.

2. Network Rail helps the homeless (and fast fashion!)

Did you hear people were shopping preloved on their commute? Network Rail teamed up with Shelter and gave them free space for pop-up boutique charity shops to encourage more people to shop secondhand. 

Charity shops don’t have big marketing budgets, and often need more opportunities to showcase their pre-loved fashion. So, they’re targeting commuters. By attracting hundreds of people to each pop-up, it allows Shelter to introduce Shelter shops to new customers and gets the conversation started around sustainability.

3. The shoe made from carbon emissions

Yes, you read that right. Swiss sports brand On has created the first shoe made from carbon emissions, called Cloudprime. They made a new foam material called CleanCloud™, which was formulated using carbon emissions as a raw material.

Apparently, On is the first company in the footwear industry to explore carbon emissions as a primary raw material for a shoe’s midsole, specifically EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) foam. So that’s a big thumbs up from us.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Responsible Consumption and Production.


Love Airbnb? Here’s another reason to

We all know and love Airbnb for letting us book blissful holiday destinations, without the impersonal backdrop of a hotel.

But today they’re in the news for something more than facilitating our beachside getaway.

Airbnb has donated a generous £1.25 million to English Heritage, a trust which maintains and protects some of England’s most important historical attractions.

Wow! Tell us more.

Well Amanda Cupples, from Airbnb, said they wanted to make the contribution to “benefit both local communities and tourists”, so they can enjoy England’s cultural history, including hidden gems in some of the less-visited rural areas and countryside.

So, what does English Heritage actually do?

From Bolsover Castle to Stonehenge, English Heritage cares for over 400 historical sites and attractions in England – including ones you might know from TV and film.

Recognise the Bridgerton family home, anyone? Or maybe The Avengers at Dover Castle is more your speed?

The charity supervises both historical sites and artefacts, helping to preserve them so that they’re available for future generations.

And they also help visitors to learn through a hands-on approach, encouraging a love of history in people of all ages.

Where will the money go?

The money donated by Airbnb will go towards making sure that English Heritage has the funds necessary to preserve these historical sites for years to come. Nice work.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Life on Land.


These shower buses provide help for the homeless

In Brooklyn, US, shower buses are providing access, dignity and help for the homeless – in the best way possible.

How did this come about?

Well, making necessities such as showers and other basic services accessible is something Brooklyn Community Services (BCS) Health, Housing and Homelessness Solutions Division and the Community Assignment, Inc. have been working together to provide.

To address the issue, BCS has rolled out a mobile care and shower unit in the Flatbush neighborhood of New York City.

What’s included in a ‘shower bus’?

The bus features access to a hot shower, restroom facilities, food, socks, undergarments, and a change of clothes. Support services for mental health, peer counseling, housing, employment, and other social services are also available as needed.

“We’re hoping that by us being here every week, we can develop their trust,” CEO and President of Community Assignment Ramona Sargeant said.

And how’s it going down?

People in the area were reluctant to use the service but became more comfortable with it the longer the bus was there. Many of the people that use the bus don’t like to use shelters for one reason or another. BCS wants to give them an option even without shelters. 

“This is the interim,” Ramona said. “Even if you don’t use shelters, you still need a shower and clean clothes – we fill that gap.”

“You really have to love doing this to be out here. It takes a lot of patience to work with some of our individuals as mental health is also one of their issues that we’re dealing with, but BCS helps with that.”

This article aligns with the UN SDGs No Poverty and Reduced Inequalities.


Bringing secondhand fashion to your commute

Secondhand fashion is not only good for the planet – it’s good for your wallets, too. Which is why changing the narrative around preloved clothing is pretty important.

That’s why Network Rail has been bringing secondhand clobber to train stations, thanks to a partnership with Shelter.

So, I can shop secondhand on my commute?

Yes! Well, people have been.

Shelter has developed a partnership with Network Rail and have been running a number of pop-up boutiques in London train stations. They handpick some great donated items and showcase them in a mobile boutique to use within the stations.

And why’s this a good thing?

Everyone is looking for ways to be more sustainable right now, so Shelter wanted to show people how great shopping secondhand can be. The thing is, charity shops don’t have big marketing budgets, and often need more opportunities to showcase their pre-loved fashion.

So, they’re targeting commuters! By attracting hundreds of people to each pop-up, it allows Shelter to introduce Shelter shops to new customers and gets the conversation started around sustainability.

Sounds great! Any other benefits?

Well, Network rail generously donated the spaces in the stations for free, as part of their Routes out of Homelessness charity partnership.

As part of Network Rail’s charter to tackle rough sleeping on the rail network, Shelter also works with Network Rail to support people who sleep rough in and around four major train stations to access accommodation.

Where can I visit one?

They’ve been pretty limited editing. The pop-up in Waterloo ran from 11-13 October, 18-20 October in London Bridge, and 25-27 October in Charing Cross.

But you can still shop secondhand, of course. Find your local store on Shelter’s website.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Responsible Consumption and Production.


Massive pride of Lions airlifted from Ukraine

A pride of lions have been airlifted from Ukraine to Colorado in what has been called the “biggest-ever war zone rescue of lions”.


Yes, lions. They’ve been airlifted to the US from the Bio Park Zoo in Odessa, located in southern Ukraine has been greatly affected by the war. 

For fear of their safety, seven adult lions, and two cubs were transferred to the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado. They weren’t taken straight to Colorado though, first making a stop at the Targu Mures Zoo in Romania. 

And why is it so significant?

This is the largest warzone rescue of lions ever. It may not seem like a lot but with everything else bad happening in the war a little good news can go a long way. 

What did the Colorado sanctuary have to say?

Pat Craig, the Executive Director of the Wild Animal Sanctuary made a point to note just how difficult international animal rescues can be.

“International rescue operations are almost always more complex in nature, but then you are factoring in a variety of foreign governments and timelines for permitting, some of those with active warzones,” he said. 

But he also made a note that just saving the lions was worth the work.

“We are thankful we could get all the lions out in time and save them. That’s what matters. They will live out the rest of their lives in pristine, large, natural habitats.”

This article aligns with the UN SDG Life On Land.


Wait, there could be a cure for cancer?

What’s the deal?

So, the news is vaccines that target cancer *could* be available by the end of 2030, scientists have said.

Who said this, then?

It was Uğur Şahin and Özlem Türeci who cofounded BioNTech, the german firm that partnered with Pfizer to produce the Covid vaccine.

They said they’d made a “breakthrough” which gave them hope for creating a cancer vaccine in the next few years.

What did they actually say?

The husband and wife team were speaking to Laura Kuenssberg on the BBC, and Özlem Türeci discussed how the Covid vaccine could potentially be used to attack cancer cells (instead of coronaviruses).

Uğur Şahin said they “could be available before 2030”.

Wow, that’s quick!

Well, yes, but BioNTech was working on mRNA cancer vaccines before Covid hit in 2020 – so it’s been in the making.

They now have a couple of cancer vaccines in clinical trials. These will hopefully develop treatments bowel cancer, melanoma and other cancer types, they said.

But, we have to be cautious?

Yes, to an extent. Özlem Türeci added: “As scientists we are always hesitant to say we will have a cure for cancer. We have a number of breakthroughs and we will continue to work on them.”

This article aligns with the UN SDG Good Health and Wellbeing.


London offers 30k free trees to public

Thousands of trees are being given away in London, in a bid to increase greenery, cool the city, provide welcome shade, and prevent flooding. 

Fancy a pack for yourself? The Conservation Volunteers have partnered with Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, to give away over 30,000 trees to be planted this autumn.

By planting more trees in London, the Mayor hopes that it will contribute to London being a greener, healthier place to live, and give everyone access to green outdoor spaces.

How can you get involved?

There are three different packs to choose from, each containing 50 trees: a hedgerow pack, a fruiting pack and a wildlife pack. While stocks last, you can order multiple packs – these are completely free and available for community groups, schools and other organisations.

“The extreme temperatures and fires that we saw across the capital this summer and the floods last year made clear just how vulnerable London is to the effects of climate change,” said Shirley Rodrigues, the Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy.

“Planting trees is one of the key ways we can reduce heat and the effects of flooding in our city, which is why the Mayor pledged an additional £3.1m for a mass tree-planting package to help limit the impacts of the climate emergency and the ecological crisis.”

Joe Coles, The Conservation Volunteers Tree Programme Manager, added: “By planting trees and working with nature, we can help to mitigate some of those impacts through the natural cooling properties that trees can impart. Not to mention the health and social benefits that come with spending time in greener more natural spaces.”

Applications can be made on the TCV website and, if you aren’t sure if you qualify, you can contact TCV at t[email protected] for more information.

Inspired to act?

DONATE: Give to The Conservation Volunteers to help support their efforts in creating and maintaining green spaces in the UK.

GET INVOLVED: Volunteer with The Conservation Volunteers to get out in nature and support our wildlife.



Philanthropists honoured for charitable work

A foundation that has been raising money for charities around the world since 1998 is honouring three philanthropists who make their work happen.

Tell me more.

The Housewares Charity Foundation (HCF) honoured Daniel Leppo, Executive Vice President and GMM, Menswear at Bloomingdale’s, William Endres, president of Select Brands; and Clea Shearer, co-founder of The Home Edit, for their philanthropic endeavours.

Each year, the HCT board of directors selects outstanding individuals for their humanitarian efforts and exceptional leadership. For 2023, Daniel and Clea will receive the Humanitarian of the Year award and William will receive the Lifetime Achievement award.

Announced at a gala ceremony in March 2023, the proceeds will benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF), as well as the James Beard Foundation, Winning with Wyatt, and the V Foundation.

Since the first gala in 1998, HCF has raised over $55 million and has been credited with donating over $32 million to BCRF. 

Find out more about the work of Housewares Charity Foundation on its website.


Raising the profile of those in the care system

A show to mark National Care Leavers’ Week (24-28 October) premiers on Friday 28th October, created by people who have experienced the care system.

That’s brilliant! What’s it about?

Billed as ‘a play about love, friendship and prawn-flavoured crisps’ (which sounds great to us), the show has been written by award-winning writer Kevin Dyer and directed by Poppy Crawshaw.

Though it’s about the experience of care leavers, the show promises to be hilarious, and relatable.

Sounds great! Are there people with care experience involved?

Absolutely! The show, called ‘Hold Me Tight’, is produced by Curious Monkey, a North East-based theatre company, who have worked closely with Troupe, a group of talented young people with experience of the care system.

Troupe is made up of young people aged between 14 and 21 who all have experience of the care system or supported housing. They are involved in everything from acting on stage, all the way to the lighting and sound.

Cool – how do I go and see it?

Hold Me Tight, which is suitable for ages 14+, will be performed in Live Theatre’s studio, in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, on Friday 28 and Saturday 29 October at 7.45pm, with an additional Saturday matinee at 2.30pm.

Running time is 40 minutes and, to encourage access for all, tickets are available on a pay-what-you-can basis (but all tickets must be booked).

Live Theatre is operated by the registered charity, North East Theatre Trust Limited.

To book, visit