Wanted: Ideas to make things better for Impact Journalism Day

From widening income gaps to racism and climate change, bad news often makes the headlines, making for a depressing read.

This June, however, a special supplement will zoom in on the solutions to some of these issues - and Straits Times readers can be a part of it.

For the fifth year in a row, The Straits Times will be participating in Impact Journalism Day, which falls on June 24 this year.

The idea is for the media to not only inform readers about the many challenges, but also inspire them by featuring innovative solutions to these problems.

If you are working on a project that offers a creative solution to a local or global issue, write in to the Paris-based organiser Sparknews at tellsparknews.com by next Friday.

Your project must be up and running, and can be run by an individual, a company or an organisation.

It can be an initiative that helps the needy in your neighbourhood, an idea that improves the lives of people beyond Singapore, or a brilliant invention that has the potential to make a global impact.

PROJECT APPEAL

People want to hear about things being done to solve problems, tackle issues and make things better in their communities. It's inspiring and gives hope. And we at ST are happy to draw attention to those who are doing that.

ST EDITOR WARREN FERNANDEZ, on the positive feedback received by ST readers about the Impact Journalism Day special.

Sparknews is led by a group of journalists with a mission to make an impact and improve the world through the reports they put out.

Shortlisted projects will be featured in The Straits Times and other participating media outlets. That means they will be seen by over 120 million readers.

Last year, 55 publications from around the world came on board, including French daily Le Figaro, The Asahi Shimbun from Japan and USA Today.

Said ST editor Warren Fernandez: "The annual Impact Journalism Day special is something that many readers tell me they enjoy reading, and look forward to.

"People want to hear about things being done to solve problems, tackle issues and make things better in their communities. It's inspiring and gives hope. And we at ST are happy to draw attention to those who are doing that."

One of the Singapore projects featured last year was Jaga-Me, a tech outfit that helps families find qualified nurses faster than going through hospitals or private nursing companies.

Set up by three young adults in November 2015, the company taps on freelance nurses - there were 5,221 nurses not in active practice in 2015 - who can respond to calls within three hours. This compares to a wait of up to two weeks if a family were to look for a homecare nurse through the hospital system.

Mr Julian Koo, 30, one of Jaga-Me's co-founders, said having their story published for Impact Journalism Day boosted the outfit's credibility.

"It helped with public recognition, for our clients and partners as well. We've been getting cases referred to us from public hospitals in Singapore," he said. "It's a huge privilege to be called one of the 50 ideas to change the world."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 16, 2017, with the headline 'Wanted: Ideas to make things better for Impact Journalism Day'. Print Edition | Subscribe