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As we stand on the edge of a brand-new year, we thought it would be good to look back on the many positive things that have come down the pike in 2020. After all, no one needs to be reminded that this has been a particularly difficult year. And we've got some real reasons to feel hopeful about the coming annum.

To recognize some of the good things that came out of 2020, El Pais has assembled a collection of 42 positive stories from the past year–and it's truly a remarkable list. From marked declines in HIV infections, cancer mortality and dementia, to the huge advances being made in renewable energy sources, there is so much progress being made. It's the kind of thing we all need to be ...

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Food access is something that is so fundamental, people don't generally see it until it disappears. For those in economically sound communities, it's usually taken for granted. But our inner cities historically fall short on this measure, and "food deserts"–places where it can be difficult or impossible to find any fresh food–have become an unfortunate staple of many of our urban centers.

Olympia Auset is one person who wasn't ready to settle for that. Determined to help her community do better, the Howard University graduate and native of South Central Los Angeles launched the pop-up grocery concept SÜPRMARKT back in 2016.

"I would be on the bus two hours every time I needed ...

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Among the many disruptions we've faced this year due to Covid-19 is the drastic effect it has had on our schools. All across the globe, children's school experiences have been transformed, with such important rites of passage as prom and graduation either curtailed or confined to the web.

But that didn't keep 18-year-old Riya Shah from pursuing her dreams. Shah spent her homebound hours working on new technology that helps expecting mothers manage their health remotely. "We're worried about our health and going out, but pregnant moms are worried about two lives," Shah says. "So what can we do to help them out?"

Shah's platform Fetal Life helps women navigate pregnancy in a new environment&ndas...

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The Beirut Port explosion of August 4th was a tragedy of staggering proportions. At least 200 deaths, 6,500 injuries and $15 billion in property damage have been attributed to the disaster, and up to 300,000 people were left homeless.

Thankfully, entrepreneurs and social activists came out in droves following the event; in fact, there are now more than 7,000 NGOs in Lebanon, the highest per capita anywhere in the world.

Michelle Mouracade is the Lebanon country director for Alfanar, a venture philanthropy organization supporting social enterprises in the Middle East. Fully eighty-three percent of the orgs that Alfanar supports are woman-led, and Mouracade thinks Lebanon is poised to become a g...

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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, we've seen a disproportionate impact on marginalized communities. Responding to the needs of this embattled sector, public and private business leaders have invested in an emergency fund targeted to social entrepreneurs who focus on the world’s most vulnerable.

Acumen, a non-profit organization that invests in initiatives to tackle poverty, heads up the fund. Employing a radical approach divergent from their typical strategy, they use small grants and loans to create an immediate infusion of support for impacted communities.

Just one of the organizations they've helped is SiembraViva, a Colombian nonprofit that brings healthy food to people in cities, ...

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The Covid-19 pandemic has had an unprecedented effect on business throughout the world, and it continues to transform the landscape of our daily lives. Thankfully, many entrepreneurs have taken this disruption as a rare opportunity to redirect their energy toward the public good.

Operation StaySafe is one good example: they're a coalition of the leading American medical testing companies, along with healthcare professionals and entrepreneurs, 22 companies in all. They are working to create realistic, scalable solutions to the testing problem, and to increase access to comprehensive testing. Not only is StaySafe creating rapid tests accessible at home and work, they go a step further to aggreg...

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Growing up in Shillong, India, Hasina Kharbhih learned about human trafficking early on. Bordering on Myanmar, Nepal, and Bangladesh, the area is deeply unstable, and plagued with the desperate poverty that breeds the widespread practice. At one point, Kharbhih’s father housed refugees in their own farmhouse.

“The stories remain etched in my brain,” Kharbhih says. “He did that as a human being and not a social worker....I understood what you can do for human beings.”

Her father's example proved to be an enduring one. Today, Kharbhih’s Impulse NGO Network has created an entirely new model to fight the problem, working with 1,000 nongovernmental organizations ...

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In the weeks since the terrible events in Minneapolis, racial tension has spiked to levels we haven't seen in decades. At times like these, it can seem that racism is irreparable, simply a feature of our existence that must be borne on society's shoulders. But this just isn't so; racism is learned behavior. It can be reversed, through education, community and compassion.

One project that has taken on this important challenge is Imaginary Walls, the feature-length documentary produced by our very own Anita Casalina, founder of Billions Rising. Anita has always been involved in filmmaking, and with this film she explores how one remarkable couple in Oakland, California has been helping people m...

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Celebrity trappings aside, Chef José Andrés considers himself, above all else, to be a cook. So after a tragic earthquake devastated Haiti, Andrés did what a cook would do: he came up with a plan, and got to work feeding the people displaced by the disaster.

That was back in 2010. Today, in the face of Covid-19, World Central Kitchen has pivoted to safely feeding people in a pandemic. And in a brilliant move intended to support restaurants by helping them to feed the hungry, they've created Restaurants For The People.

Andrés' program has hired workers in Covid-19 hotspots from NYC to the San Francisco Bay area, and identified communities that need food the most. The...

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Most of us would be hard-pressed to remember what we were doing when we were four years old. Not Mikaila Ulmer: she was starting her own small business. After an unlikely inspiration--being stung by a bee--Mikaila had come to realize the vital role that bees play in the ecosystem. And almost eleven years later, her business, Me & The Bees Lemonade, has grown into a huge success.

Selling flaxseed lemonade sweetened with local honey (her grandmother's recipe), Mikaila donates a percentage of her profits to organizations fighting to save honeybees. And after introducing her lemonade on “Shark Tank”, Mikaila was able to secure a $60,000 investment to continue to grow her enterprise. T...

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