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Upside stories about customised wheelchairs, art in hospitals architecture education and rebuilding Ukraine

Good morning.

If you have a spare five minutes today I urge you to read this piece that follows the story of Zahida Qureshi, a Pakistani woman who set up a charitable organisation that makes customised wheelchairs for children and adults. Qureshi herself became a wheelchair user after she contracted polio as a child, and experienced the huge barriers that disabled people face in Pakistan. Since 2007, her organisation has given away 6,000 wheelchairs and is growing.

As hard as it can be to believe, people are out there trying to make the world a better, more liveable place. For more uplifting stories, taken from the First Edition newsletter, keep scrolling.

Nimo Omer
Assistant editor, First Edition

‘Everyone seemed at ease’: how art is making hospital visits less painful

Some of life’s hardest moments are spent in hospital, but two organisations are working to ease that with ingenious designs. Mina Holland explains how art has been a lifeline

Art In Site was commissioned by Liz O’Sullivan, arts manager for the Guy’s and St Thomas’ Trust (GSTT), to redesign several areas of the Evelina, which treats newborns up to 18-year-olds, with an approach that is not just aesthetic but also pedagogical.

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In seven years, Hospital Rooms has completed almost 800 artist workshops to create 150 artworks for 25 projects all over the UK, helping the NHS “dream bigger about what’s possible within four walls: wall murals, kinetic sculpture, photos, hanging pieces, video works… art which rivals those in cultural institutions”.

Full story here

Venezuelans create affordable electric vehicles as necessity drives ingenuity

Entrepreneurs in the oil-producing state now plagued by shortages recycled parts from golf carts and motorcycles to make battery- and solar-powered cars

Full story here

Brighton rivals to bowls buddies: is this elite football’s firmest friendship?

Eric Gill kept fellow goalkeeper Dave Hollins out of the Brighton team for years but more than six decades later they remain pals

Full story here

‘Our time has come’ – Muyiwa Oki, first black president of RIBA, reveals his shakeup plans

Elderly white men in bow ties have tended to run the very grand and possibly even stuffy Royal Institute of British Architects. Muyiwa Oki, its youngest boss ever at 31, spells out his vision for unions, the climate crisis and island-buying oligarchs

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Education is also under the spotlight. A report in June into misconduct at University College London’s Bartlett School of Architecture found a “toxic culture” of bullying, sexual misconduct and racism spanning decades. It finally lifted the lid on what had long been an open secret, an ingrained masochism endemic to architectural education, leading to stronger calls than ever for a fundamental rethink of how the subject is taught, and the need for alternative routes to qualification.

Full story here

‘We take care of each other’: the young Ukrainians rebuilding more than just homes

City dwellers spend weekends fixing houses and creating bonds with older generation in former occupied villages

“We are making a new Ukraine,” says Tetiana Burianova, as she surveys her volunteers clearing up a shattered house, part of a day’s reconstruction efforts in a war-ravaged village about 75 miles north-west of Kyiv.

While the government – fighting the war against Russia to the east and south – has struggled to clear and rebuild homes, the state’s absence has left a gap that Burianova and her fast-growing band of twenty- and thirtysomethings have begun to fill.

Full story here

Published by Guestspeaker

A joint effort of several authors who do find that nobody can keep standing at the side and that “Everyone" must care about what is going on in today’s world. We are a bunch of people who do not mind that somebody has a totally different idea but is willing to share the ideas with others and to be Active and willing to let others understand how "today’s decisions will influence the future”. Therefore we would love to see many others to "Act today".

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