Stories for change

Day after day, we are confronted with the world's troubles as reported in the media. These constant reminders can make us anxious, afraid or, even worse, anaesthetised.

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But now, more than ever, citizens, companies, universities and organisations are developing new ways to solve humanity's problems. We are witnessing an outpouring of social innovation and social businesses around the planet.

The job of the press is to keep us informed. And, yet, the time has passed when the media's greatest impact came essentially from "turning the pen in the wound", as the great French journalist Albert Londres once wrote. Increasingly, reporters want to contribute to the common good by writing about solutions, thereby amplifying their effects and creating a sense of hope.

Nearly 40 leading newspapers from all over the world - including The Straits Times - joined our efforts and are publishing supplements dedicated to innovative solutions. Each newspaper contributed one or more original articles, then chose what to publish from the 100 or so stories we assembled.

In a few days, their editors-in-chief will gather in Paris to discuss ways to take this project even further.

Last year, on Impact Journalism Day, a woman in Singapore read an article about adjustable eyeglasses that could correct more than half of the world's vision problems for only US$4 (S$5) a pair. She showed the article to her husband, an executive at a multinational lens manufacturer. He contacted the inventors and now they are collaborating on a pilot project in India that could improve the lives of millions.

This is the kind of impact we set out to achieve.

Today, you are one of 100 million readers discovering our stories of hope. Imagine if every reader shared these stories with those around them. Choose one and tell it to your children, your colleagues, your friends. Become a part of the movement by motivating others.

There is more you can do to promote solution-based journalism. Take part in our selfie contest by posting a photo of yourself and this newspaper on Twitter (use #ImpactJournalism and tag it with @STcom) or on the Facebook page of our founding partner, AXA (facebook.com/AXAPeopleProtectors).

Help the innovators and entrepreneurs in these stories to overcome the challenges they face by joining a brainstorming session (www.sparknews.com/ijd/makesense).

And feel free to suggest projects we might consider for next year's Impact Journalism Day (http://www.sparknews.com/ijd).

We hope you enjoy today's edition.

impact@sparknews.com

Christian de Boisredon is the founder of Sparknews/Impact Journalism Day

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This special Impact Journalism Day Edition is brought to you by Sparknews with the support of:

impact@sparknews.com