(ReasonsToBeHopeful.com) Blogger Eazibee brings attention to good stories from news websites from around the world. Her blog includes a quick summary and a link to each story.
Website Gives Readers Reasons to be Hopeful
FEBRUARY 21, 2008Staff Writer Blogger Eazibee was inspired to create a repository of positive news stories after being frustrated with the quality of journalism for some time. "Good investigative journalists seem to be a dying breed and many in the media seem happy to pander to what they perceive to be people's taste for instant action and trivia." Eazibee saw that the result is news focusing on up-to-the-minute coverage of the latest disaster or celebrity gossip, with very little explanation of the nuances of particular situations. She also noticed that there is little coverage of good news. Instead of hopelessly resigning herself to this situation, Eazibee came up with the idea of a blog. She wanted to give other readers a few reasons to be hopeful when they read the news each day. She sat down to develop the description of it the blog one night and, before she knew it, she'd committed herself to posting a happy story every day for an entire year!Eazibee numbers each day of her blog and she states that one of her favorite days so far is Day 43 - the "Taxi Sisters." The BBC story was about a group of women in the Senegalese capital, Dakar, who had set up their own taxi firm. Their business plan involved them using all female drivers, with brand new cars that they had bought on 5-year loan deals, providing a preferable alternative to many of Dakar's older and more dangerous taxis. Many local hotels now give them all their business. This undertaking was far from easy, as the taxi industry and Senegalese society more broadly are very male-dominated, and the women did face some resistance. However, to counter this they are now planning to set up another firm with a similar business model, but with all male drivers! Eazibee likes this story because she considers the taxi project "a great idea, well-executed, and really beneficial to those involved."After almost five months of scouring news sources for happy stories, Eazibee has seen many reoccuring positive themes. She frequently finds stories about success in fighting disease, especially HIV. "There is plenty of good news to share - a real contrast to the doom and gloom of the media coverage about the HIV/AIDS epidemic even a few years ago."Another thread that is dominant in Eazibee's blog is "people power" in many different forms. "Certainly there are a lot of stories around at the moment about loosening the grip of totalitarian leaders over their respective societies and also about bringing war criminals to justice," she notes. Eazibee finds that there currently seem to be more steps forward than steps back in this area.Sometimes Eazibee does have trouble finding happy stories. And more frequently, she finds it difficult to vary her sources. Readers will appreciate that she draws from a wide range of different publications, particularly those beyond Europe and North America. But the language barrier makes that more difficult. Readers can contact Eazibe with story leads and suggestions at eazibee (at) gmail.com.
Besides giving other news readers reasons to be hopeful, Eazibee has also discovered that her blog is having a beneficial effect on herself. It's exhausting, but has encouraged her to feel more positive about the way the world is going. She calls herself a natural optimist but recognizes that we all need to get a boost every now and again to stay hopeful and to keep dreaming!Eazibee gets a lot of positive feedback. Many people have said that they enjoy "Reasons to be Hopeful" and that it lifts their mood. Others like the debate the articles stimulate. She also had a reader email to say that he was reading "Reasons to be Hopeful" every night on the way home from work, via his Blackberry, and that it helps him cope with his commute and to relax and refocus his mind at the end of a hard working day. Eazibee says this sort of feedback makes it all worthwhile. She loves knowing that hope is being rekindled inside people through her blog."Reasons to be Hopeful" isn't Eazibee's first blog. She also started Sport for the People. It aims at re-energizing the links between commercial sports and the community. Eazibee wanted to make a difference after she saw that sports like soccer in Europe and, to a lesser extent, baseball in the US are losing touch with their fan-bases and particularly with kids. Ticket prices are getting pretty expensive, for example, and broadcast rights mean watching games on TV isn't always an option. Despite the huge amount of money being made, not much finds its way back to community facilities and school sports. Eazibee wanted to bring attention to this situation and to ultimately effect some change.Eazibee is a UK national and she has worked in international development for many years, primarily focused on health and environmental issues. She is currently working as a consultant, blogging, and screenwriting. She came to the United States in 2006 when her husband was posted to New York with his work. She has enjoyed a career break and the opportunity to spend more time with her children since then.reasonstobehopeful.blogspot.com/