Happy Hump Day News: Remarkable Reefs, Rescues and Recycling

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As London goes into tier 4 and Christmas plans are scuppered for many, we think that this week’s Happy Hump Day News might be our most needed yet…

Above and Beyond

A bus driver in Belfast went off route so that one of his passengers could get to her mother’s care home in time to see her. Jacqueline Mason had boarded the wrong bus and was likely to miss her strict half-an-hour visiting slot. After hearing her story and checking with the other passengers, Translink driver Alex Bailey took Jacqueline as close to the care home as he could. News reporters were filming outside because its residents were receiving their vaccines, so the heartwarming story quickly hit social media. After surviving coronavirus and a heart attack in 2020, Jacqueline’s mother has now received the vaccine!

Trash to Treasure


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E-waste at a scrapyard in Accra, Ghana – which was once regarded as “the most polluted place on Earth” – is being recycled by a pair of architects. Their organisation, called Agbogbloshie Makerspace Platform (AMP), makes household items such as tiles and computers out of the discarded technology. This entrepreneurship continues elsewhere in Africa: in Ghana, innovators have made an egg incubator out of discarded fridges, and in Dar es Salaam, a company called Buni Hub is making 3D printers! E-waste is one of the most dangerous types of waste, and much of it is dumped in scrapyards and tips instead of being properly recycled. 

Great Scott


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It’s come to light recently that Mackenzie Scott – novelist, philanthropist and ex-wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos – has given away approximately $6 billion so far, after she walked away from her divorce with around $38 billion. She chose to give enormous sums of money to higher education institutions in most need of support, including historically black schools and women’s and LGBTQ organisations. She has also signed the Giving Pledge, in which she promises to give half of her wealth to charity throughout her life.

Reef Relief

A thriving ocean cool spot has been discovered in the Indian Ocean, near the coast of Tanzania. The coastal basin is a haven for coral and marine life – its cooler water is thought to be a result of the deglaciation of Mount Kilimanjaro and the Usambara Mountains, which flows into the ocean. This vital ecosystem could be one of the most important pockets of the Indian Ocean, but it needs to be kept well protected!

Lost Luggage


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A piece of art accidentally left in Dusseldorf Airport, thought to be lost forever, was recovered after a brilliant team effort. A businessman left behind the work by French surrealist painter Yves Tanguy, which he had wrapped in cardboard, when he got on his flight to Tel Aviv. The man’s nephew then headed from Belgium to Dusseldorf to assist police with their search, which led them to a paper recycling bin where the $340,000 painting was found unharmed.

Elephant in the Road

When a baby elephant was hit by a motorbike in Thailand, witnesses were naturally worried about both the rider and the animal. While medics treated the motorbike rider, who luckily had no serious injuries, one off-duty rescue worker gave CPR to the baby elephant. After about ten minutes, the elephant stood up on its own! It was then given more treatment before being returned to the site of the crash, where its mother came back to find it.

Poignant Penguins

Oceanographic Magazine has awarded an Ocean Photograph Awards to Tobias Baumgaertner in Melbourne, who captured this shot of two fairy penguins who appear to be hugging while looking at the bright city lights. According to a volunteer at the colony, the pair of penguins – one older female and a younger male – both lost their partners and are widowed, so they often meet up and comfort each other. I’m not crying, you’re crying… 

And Finally…

While many of us are bitterly disappointed about not seeing our friends and family this Christmas, there are others who aren’t quite so upset…