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Studies Show Gardening Can Lead to Better Mental Health
Researchers at the University of Florida found that gardening activities lowered stress, anxiety and depression in healthy women. "Past studies have shown that gardening can help improve the mental health of people who have existing medical conditions or challenges. Our study shows that healthy people can also experience a boost in mental wellbeing through gardening," said Charles Guy, principal investigator on the study. The idea of using gardening to promote better health and wellbeing has been around since the 19th century.
London Just Announced Free Meals for Schoolchildren on Weekends and Holidays
The Mayor of London has launched a £3.5m scheme to provide free meals during school holidays and weekends for children from low-income families. The initiative will run for a year, with charities and partners in the capital set to provide an estimated 6.9 million extra meals. The scheme will begin in time for the Easter holidays, and will be delivered in partnership with food charity The Felix Project. The Mayor's Fund for London will also receive funds to provide free meals to low-income families and young people through community partners and hubs.
How a Dutch 'Fish Doorbell' and Global Volunteers Are Protecting Thousands of Fish
A new website called "fish doorbell" is offering a unique way for wildlife enthusiasts around the world to help migrating fish in the Netherlands. Volunteers can watch the livestream and signal dam lock keepers when they spot fish, helping guide them on their journey. The website has gained attention thanks to a TikTok video by user Thunder Keck. Last year, over 10,000 fish were let through the dam with the help of community members who rang the doorbell.
This Street Artist is Turning Trash Into Meaningful Artwork
In a city of discarded materials, Junko is the creative bug bringing them to life! Scouring alleys and parks for treasure, this mysterious street artist has been turning trash into art since 2020. From constructing giant spiders from windshield wipers to creating an entire habitat made from car parts and old shoes - their work pops up in public places across Canada. Junko says they hope to remind us all of our environmental stewardship inspire communities everywhere with their eco-friendly works.
This Delivery Driver is Going Viral for Her Efforts to Keep Others Safe
An Amazon delivery driver named Kelsey has gone viral on TikTok for her friendly and helpful attitude. In the video, the driver is seen singing a lighthearted song while reminding the homeowner of the importance of having visible house numbers. Her message was backed up by medical professionals, who emphasized the need for easily identifiable addresses for emergency responders. Kelsey's concern for safety won her praise and admiration , and she later posted a follow-up video, stressing the importance of crisis management and prevention education.
This 16-Year-Old Swimmer Just Smashed a World Record
Swimming sensation Summer McIntosh has taken the pool by storm - smashing Ariarne Titmus's 400 metre world record by a whopping 0.32 seconds! The 16-year-old Canadian beat Titmus's record on the opening night of the Canadian Swimming Trials, finishing in an impressive 3:56.08 time at the Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre. McIntosh said she felt "pure euphoria" when she realised what she had achieved, and was overwhelmed with emotion after dedicating so much time to swimming over the past few years.
Scientists May Have Identified the Secret Ingredient in da Vinci's Paintings
A new study suggests that Old Masters such as Leonardo da Vinci, Rembrandt, and Sandro Botticelli may have intentionally used proteins, particularly egg yolk, in their oil paintings. In the study, researchers recreated the paint-making process by combining four ingredients: egg yolk, distilled water, linseed oil, and pigment. They found that adding egg yolk to oil paint has a drastic effect on the properties of the paint, making it resistant to aging and humidity. This could explain why some Old Masters' paintings are still in good condition today.
Meet the Grandmas Kicking Away Stereotypes on the Soccer Field
A group of grandmothers from South Africa, known as Vakhegula Vakhegula, jogged into a stadium to cheers for the first match of the Grannies International Football Tournament. The tournament will see at least 15 teams from South Africa and other countries compete, including teams from as far away as France and the United States. The team was formed in 2007 to improve the health of local women. The women on the team enjoy playing soccer and staying active, with one player saying she no longer needs medication for arthritis since she started playing.
Soundwaves Could be the Hidden Key to Removing Microplastics From Water
Scientists have found a novel and exciting solution to the pollution problem of microplastics – sound waves that remove both small and large particles. New research presented at a meeting of the American Chemical Society showed impressive results, using high-pitched sound force to concentrate microplastic pieces into one area while letting clean water flow freely. These incredible new findings even included solutions for dealing with salt water and other denser elements - get ready world, plastic contamination won’t be an issue any longer!
A New Study Shows That 65 Species of Animals Laugh
According to researchers at UCLA, laughter is a natural impulse in humans and they have identified 65 species of animals who make "play vocalizations," or laughter. Along with primate species, domestic cows, dogs, foxes, seals, mongooses, and even three bird species are prone to laughter as well. While it can be difficult to document animal laughter in the wild, the researchers have captured some examples on video, such as these adorable giggling foxes. The study of animal laughter can even help us better understand our own evolutionary behavior.
Volunteers Are Welcoming Refugees With Handmade Blankets
Crafters in Vermont have created at least 86 handmade blankets as part of the national Welcome Blanket project, which aims to welcome refugees settling in the US. The project, which began in 2017, is a crowd-sourced artistic action supporting refugees who have been forced to leave their home or country to escape war, persecution or natural disaster. Each blanket came with a personal note from the creator and the aim is to make newcomers to the US feel embraced and welcome.