2020 wasn’t all bad as these positive stories prove.
The past year will largely be remembered as the time we all pressed pause. As coronavirus swept across the globe, it forced us to change the way we live in so many ways. Nations locked down, countries closed their borders, flights were grounded, offices were shut and the spontaneity of simply popping out the shops or to grab lunch with friends became something we had to organise and plan in advance. Face masks became an essential item and the phrase ‘socially distanced’ became an integral part of vocabulary. But in spite of all the hard times we have endured, 2020 hasn’t been entirely a bad year. If you look hard enough, you will find many things to smile about as the following uplifting stories from this year prove.
1. Nature thrived
It goes without saying that we love nature and the great outdoors here at Beards & Daisies, and whilst us humans were being told to stay inside, it gave British wildlife time some much needed time to take centre stage. The National Trust reported that rare wildlife, from raptors and warblers to badgers, otters and even orcas, appeared to be enjoying our vanishing act. And much closer to home, many of us became green-fingered in 2020. Gardening was cited as the second most popular lockdown activity people planned to do after watching TV, according to a survey by GlobalData market research, which is music to our ears as we love both indoor and outdoor plants (the latter is something to keep a watch for!).
2. The air was cleaner
As commuting life and the rush associated with big cities came to a halt, it came with the benefit of reduced pollution. A study from the British Lung Foundation found that among 14,000 with lung conditions, one in six of those noticed improvements in their health. Additionally, the better air quality also led to 11,000 fewer deaths from pollution in the UK and elsewhere in Europe, according to the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air.
3. History was made in the US election
We won’t get too deep into politics, but we absolutely stand for equality, so were thrilled that Kamala Harris became the first woman, first Black-American, and first Indian-American Vice President-elect. Talk about shattering the glass ceiling. We’re sure she will go on to do great things and inspire many.
4. England campaigned to end child food poverty
23-year-old Manchester United football player, Marcus Rashford, campaigned tirelessly for free school meals for vulnerable and disadvantaged children, prompting many of us all to come together to support those less well off. The best part? He succeeded in forcing the government to make a major U-turn and support his mission. More than a million people across England signed his petition to tackle child food poverty and the '#MakeTheUTurn' campaign ensured 1.3million children will continue to receive free school meals. After all, no child should go hungry!
5. Captain Sir Tom Moore touched our hearts
In a bid to raise money for NHS Charities Together, a former British Army officer began to walk laps of his garden in the run up to his 100th birthday. He smashed his original goal of raising £1,000 and won the nation's hearts in the process, as he actually ended up raising over £38.9million. This goes to show that you’re simply never too old to make a difference, and even better that the money went such to a worthwhile cause, with the NHS needing our support more than ever during the pandemic.