Does Anything Good Happen in Africa? – Part II

It’s true that much of the news from the continent of Africa is negative. In a previous experiment, I challenged a class of geography students to find good news stories coming from that great continent. There were many, but not on the scale that come form other continents.

In her TED talk, Chimamanda Adichie tells of the danger involved in only having one view of a place and its people.

This year I challenged a new group of students to find good news stories from Africa. This is what they found….

Story 1 found by A-SM

Obama presents plan to help disarm LRA in Uganda

Friday, 26 November 2010

This story is good because it shows that the problems are being combatted.  It also shows that developed countries feel that it is important to help African communities so that they can later make economic and political links.

Story 2 found by TB

Uganda: First Major Malaria Vaccine works In Trial

The company GlaxoSmithKline have invented the first major vaccine for malaria, in a clinic the vaccine reduced the chance of catching the disease by 50% and looks to be the first way to stop the chance of the disease.

Data was released showing results that “researchers who analysed data from the first 6,000 children found that after 12 months of follow-up, three doses of RTS,S reduced the risk of children experiencing clinical malaria and severe malaria by 56% and 47%, respectively”.


Story 3 found by HS

A dependable two-way relationship?

In the past, the Maasai people and the local population of lions of Kenya have been bitter enemies, but recently, figures have shown lion population figures falling from 120,000 twenty years ago to 25,000 today. But interestingly, there has been a rise in numbers in South Kenya in the Chuylu Hills as the local Maasai tribesmen have created a symbiotic relationship. It is Maasai tradition for a young man who wants to pass into manhood to go out into the bush and kill a lion. This tradition had led to the decline in numbers but this was not the only reason for the hunting and killing of lions. Ever since the Maasai people have shared their territory with prides of lions, there has always existed a threat of the lions attacking the tribesmens’ precious cattle herds. Nowadays, the locals have realised the diminishing numbers and have acted, setting up a Trust to compensate Maasai herders who have lost cattle to lions. This prevents the unnecessary killing of the predators, effectively stopping the decline of the population in the area. This heart-warming story of new-found friendship surely is good news to come out of Africa.


Will Plate Tectonics Create New Land In The Canary Islands?

Eruptions in 2011 seemed to herald the arrival of a new island in the Canary Islands archipelago. Whislt this could create dangerous and disruptive ash clouds, it reminds us that there are many undersea eruptions on active margins around the world and that these could develop into new land.

Is uneven development in China causing resentment?

The story of China’s growth and change over recent decades is powerful evidence of how industrial development and Globalisation can combine to create rapid change. However, far from everyone in China is feeling the benefit of the changes that have happened and continue to happen. This article reveals how millions of rural Chinese people feel left behind.



Who was Wangari Maathai?

Wangari Maathai was a leading light in African conservation and social enterprise, who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her efforts. She was critical in showing people around the world how positive actions could change the environment and people.

More here:

And here:

How will the UK change when its people live to 100?

Recent reports suggest that half the children born in the UK today can expect to live to 100.

This will place different demands on our healthcare, social care and pension systems. But the full extent of the changes are unknown.

Will the UK remain a place where older people are valued or might they come to be viewed as a burden on society? Whatever the outcome, the socail fabric of the UK will change significantly in the coming decades as our population ages.



What is Cuckmere Haven like and how is it managed?

Cuckmere Haven is a well-loved beauty spot on the South coast of England.

The Cuckmere Estuary Partnership seeks a sustainable long-term future for the area.

What were the impacts of the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami?

The Tohoku earthquake and subsequent tsunami (11th of March 2001) was one of the largest ever recorded and caused serious damage and loss of life in Japan.

You can see a quake map here.

The BBC have a good over view of events here

Wikipedia has a fact-filled page here

One of the most striking aspects of this incident was the way in which the Japanese people reacted. There was little in the way of looting and disorder, which can characterise the aftermath of disasters.

Out at sea ships passed over the huge waves before they reached the coast. You can see how earthquakes trigger tsunamis here.