From the sustainable future of farming to the young men navigating consent in a post Me Too era, the April–June issue of Positive News magazine is here to help you keep perspective and stay balanced in the midst of the Covid-19 crisis
“Get the facts” but “minimise news that causes you to feel anxious or distressed,” and “find opportunities to amplify positive and hopeful stories”, recommends the World Health Organization in its advice on mental health during the coronavirus crisis.
The new issue of Positive News magazine is published today, which we hope will help you to keep perspective and stay balanced at this time when many people are finding the news overwhelming. Escapism this is not. As part of a wider picture, seeing progress and positive responses to problems can help you to continue to engage with the distressing side of the news too.
As the new issue of Positive News magazine went to press, the Covid-19 pandemic was intensifying. The prime minister had just issued guidance for social distancing and the country was heading towards the lockdown that soon followed.
But amid the anxiety and suffering of the crisis, there has also been kindness, resilience, shared humanity and hope. Thousands of ‘mutual aid’ groups have been set up nationwide, with neighbours connecting online to volunteer to support those in need. Meanwhile, experts are working across national and sector divides with unprecedented collaboration to try to tackle the pandemic.
And while of course no one welcomes this crisis, there’s at least a silver lining: wildlife is returning to spaces normally disrupted by human activity, while carbon emissions and air pollution are falling due to the slowdown in economic activity. Campaigners have noted how the response to the outbreak shows the urgency with which political leaders could react to the climate crisis, and the way that societies can co-operate and transform themselves rapidly.
You can read stories such as these, and more, right here on at Positive.News, where we’re regularly publishing coverage of positive responses to the coronavirus.
However, at the same time I hope that the latest issue of our quarterly print title, which exists outside the daily news cycle, can offer you some psychological respite (and time away from screens, too). As the bulk of the magazine was finalised before the crisis, by chance of timing it is free from stories related to the coronavirus. Instead, it is loaded with articles about the social and environmental progress that continues alongside; stories that point towards the kind of future that society could step closer towards, after the pandemic.
In our cover story, we explore a promising change afoot in the UK’s farming industry. The future of farming might surprise you: for one, it’s not all high-tech solutions such as hydroponics in secret city spaces (although there is some of that). The most exciting trend is perhaps the regenerative agriculture movement: farmers who are ditching the tractor-pulled ploughs and agro-chemicals in favour of letting nature run its course.
We hope the latest issue of our magazine can offer you some psychological respite – and point towards the kind of future that society could step closer towards, after the pandemic
Another area going backwards to move forwards, is urban transport. Forget driverless cars; the future of getting around cities is the humble bicycle. In this issue, we take a stroll through cities that are removing private vehicles, to the benefit of their communities.
But high-tech innovations do still have their place. For instance, you can discover how technology developed for exploring space has been co-opted to support life on Earth.
Meanwhile, we meet educators who are empowering young men to navigate consent in a post Me Too world, and elsewhere, we learn about the people proving that religious faith and LGBTQ+ identity don’t have to be mutually exclusive.
I hope that the many stories in the April–June issue of Positive News magazine will inspire some positivity about the future, despite the adversity the world is facing.