The Good News Report: From that viral Greta Thunberg photo to a charitable plumber, the feel-good stories that went viral this week

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Lauren Geall
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Greta Thunberg

Dropping every Sunday, The Good News Report brings you nothing but positive news about wonderful people, to uplift and inspire you.   

This picture of Greta Thunberg went viral for all the right reasons

This photograph of Greta Thunberg taken by Adam Johansson went viral on Twitter this week, after a youth charity leader shared the image to compare the start of the young climate activist’s movement to what it has now become.

“I find this picture so incredibly moving,” Louise Macdonald wrote. “This is Greta Thunberg aged 15, sat alone outside the Swedish Parliament Aug 2018 – the first school strike.

“In just one year,” she continued, “she’s created a wave that will change the whole world. Never underestimate the power of one young person.”

An estimated four million people took part in the climate strikes on 20 September. The strikes were inspired by Thunberg’s Fridays for Future movement, which encourages young people to skip school and protest the lack of action being taken to solve the climate crisis.

Global climate strike crowd in London
The Good News Report: Greta Thunberg's Fridays for Future movement inspired this week's global climate strikes, which saw scenes like this one in London take place across the world

Journalist Natalie Wolchover also shared the powerful shot alongside a picture of Friday’s climate strike in New York, adding the caption: “One year and one month apart.”

This viral challenge encourages people to clean up the planet

Forget the bottle cap challenge or the Harlem Shake – this new internet trend is all about making a positive change to the environment.

The aptly named “Trashtag Challenge” encourages users to take a walk outside and clean-up any litter-filled areas they find. Once they’ve done that, they can share before and after photos online using the tag #trashtag.

While the challenge has been making its rounds on the internet for some time now, the hashtag has made headlines again this weekend as people in America celebrate National Clean-Up Day – and it’s inspiring others around the world to do the same.

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It’s a heartwarming and wholesome challenge that’s making the world a better place – and the #trashtag tag is a seriously inspirational scroll.

Plumber receives influx of donations after his generous gesture goes viral

A man who went viral after he sent a £0 bill to a 91-year-old woman with acute leukaemia for fixing her plumbing has now received almost £80,000 in donations so he can continue his charitable work.

James Anderson from Burnley, who carries out his work as part of not-for-profit company Depher, has since been contacted by people all around the world in support of his brilliant work.

Before his newfound fame, Anderson was struggling to pay off his personal debts, let alone continue his free service for the elderly and vulnerable people of the community. Now however, after receiving £79,767 from people as far away as America, Anderson has been able to pay off his debts – and has plenty left over to expand his work.

Anderson’s fundraising aims to raise awareness of the number of vulnerable and elderly people living without essential services such as hot water and heating in their homes. His work ranges from free services to discounted rates, and he hopes to use the money he has received to expand his work to other areas of the country.

A woman who quit her job to search for her lost dog found him 57 days later

A woman who quit her job to look for her lost dog with her husband found the border collie after 57 days.

Katie the border collie escaped from a dog-friendly hotel room in July during to Montana with her owners Carole and Verne King, who live in Washington. After months of searching – which saw the King’s launch a social media campaign, hand out hundreds of flyers and even saw Carole quit her job – a stranger spotted the collie in the shade of a tree on the side of a road and gave Carole a heads-up.

Katie had lost 12 pounds, was close to starvation and was also severely dehydrated, but is expected to make a full recovery. The above video shows the moment Katie was reunited with Verne King after her ordeal.

The first domestic abuse commissioner has been appointed

Domestic violence
The Good News Report: The first Domestic Violence Commissioner for England and Wales has been appointed.

Nicole Jacobs was appointed as the first domestic abuse commissioner for England and Wales on Wednesday.

The charity worker and activist will be responsible for championing victims of domestic abuse and recommending improvements to the government, and has started her position by saying she expects to see the Domestic Violence Bill included in the new Queen’s Speech when Parliament returns.

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Boris Johnson has promised to resurrect the domestic abuse bill – but its future is still uncertain

There were worries the Domestic Violence Bill, which has now been in the works for over two years, would be dropped because of a parliamentary focus on Brexit. But thanks to pressure from domestic abuse charities and concerns expressed by MPs including Jess Phillips, Boris Johnson has now said he is “fully committed” to reintroducing the bill.

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Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.

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