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The news for the past couple of weeks has, understandably, been filled with stories related to Covid-19, most of which have been overwhelmingly negative. This can take a toll on our mental health, so Jasmine from our student journalism team has put together some positive news stories to make you smile in these uncertain times.

Good news for the environment

Since the outbreak of Covid-19 in Wuhan, China, there has been a significant drop in the number of greenhouse gas emissions and the human impact on the environment has drastically improved.

There has been a global drop in air pollution, with the biggest drop being in the air pollution over Wuhan. Additionally, nitrogen dioxide levels over Milan have fallen by around 40% and the carbon monoxide levels in New York are down by 50% due to the fall in traffic in the city.

Moreover, the canals in Venice now have clear water running through them so the shoals of fish near the canal bed are now visible again. Swans and ducks have returned to the canal, and one duck family has made a nest and laid eggs on the banks of the canal.

The outbreak of Covid-19 has shown us that the damage we have done to the environment may be more reversible than we originally thought and if we act soon we could save our planet.

Vast numbers of volunteers

Covid-19  has placed unprecedented pressure on the health and social care services of the world and placed many vulnerable people at risk. However, there are so many kind people out there that are willing to give up their time to help the vulnerable out.

In New York, two people managed to gather 1,300 volunteers in just 72 hours to help deliver groceries and medicine to elderly and vulnerable people. Similar efforts have been seen in the UK with over half a million people signing up to become volunteers for the NHS in the past couple of days.

Supermarkets are also doing everything they can to help. In many countries across the world, for example in Australia and the UK, supermarkets have set aside an hour a day for the elderly and key workers to shop.

When it seems that there is bad news everywhere, it’s good to be reminded that there is so much good in humanity and so many people who are willing to help others out.

View animals through webcams

Many zoos have had to close due to Covid-19 , but you can still get your dose of cute animals, through the webcams they’ve set up so you can see animals whenever you want from the comfort of your own home.

Folly Farm has set up webcams so you can view their penguins, giraffes, lion and barn animals, which include sheep and goats

On Edinburgh Zoo’s webcams you can see pandas, penguins, tigers and even koalas

The Cumbria Wildlife Trust webcams show some animals that are native to Britain or the seas around Britain such as osprey, garden birds, badgers, seals and red squirrels.


During this time, it is essential to look after your mental health so surround yourself with positivity and love. Use the internet to stay connected with friends and family that you can’t see and make sure you look out for those in your household and local community.

Most importantly, stay at home! Following social distancing and regularly washing your hands can help to flatten the curve, protect the NHS and ultimately save lives.

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