Need in the News, Vol. VI, Issue 6

For the last six years, at the end of every month, I’ve summarized local, national and international “stories of need” from news sites, blogs, press releases and editorials. The following are some of June’s most need-in-the-news-worthy stories:

YEMEN — Cholera tightened its grip on this war-torn country.

SYRIA — Now that relative calm rules in Western Syria, the government, rebels and ISIS are fighting for control of Eastern Syria.

IRAQ — The battle for Mosul continued as ISIS has been mostly expelled from the city.

PALESTINE — Earlier this month, Palestinians marked 50 years of Israeli occupation.

Emerald Elementary in Broomfield, Colo., is under (re-)construction. More than 11 languages are spoken at home by members of the Emerald student body. Emerald also has the highest percentage in Broomfield of students on free and reduced lunches. (Marrton Dormish)

At times, what gets lost in the concern and clamor over major local, national and international events and issues, are ordinary people, communities, businesses and other groups doing extraordinary things. Here are a few I’ve heard about recently:

PORTLAND (Oregon) Courtney Christenson showed up at competing protests to literally stand in the gap.

CARACAS (Venezuela) — Musician Wuilly Arteaga played his violin during protests in the Venezuelan capital. That is, until a government security officer ruined his violin. Just weeks later, Arteaga is back playing and performing on the streets after he received the gift of a new violin.

GAZA STRIP (Palestine) Madeleine Kolab is Gaza’s first firsherwoman.

DE BEQUE (Colorado) — A 24-course meal served at a remote ranch drove a food writer to tears.

NORTH KENSINGTON, LONDON (England)Chefs lined the streets near the Grenfell Tower disaster to cook free meals for those in need.

WATERLOO (Iowa) & CHICAGO (Illinois) — On Father’s Day, left-leaning educator Parker Palmer celebrated his conservative father, Max J. Palmer, as “…the best man I’ve ever known.”

Stories worth reflection:
GIRL SOLDIERS — Yes, this happens. In the eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, thousands of girls have been forced to become soldiers, either fighting on the front lines or serving other soldiers as porters or cooks.

SEND US YOUR TIRED, YOUR POOR… — Ever wonder which country hosts the most refugees? Here’s your answer.

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