If you’re anything like us, your newsfeed is full of panic-inducing news articles and your inbox is full of businesses sharing their COVID-19 reassurances. We know, it’s a lot right now. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of all the positive things that have come about because of this virus, just to remind you that the sky isn’t falling.
Boars in the middle of my hometown, dolphins in the port of Cagliari, ducks in the fountains in Rome, Venice canals have now clean water full of fishes. Air pollution dropped. Nature is reclaiming its spaces during quarantine in Italy. #COVID19 #COVIDー19 pic.twitter.com/dr6QILfF9V— Francesco Delrio (@Cosodelirante) March 15, 2020
Venice Canals Are Clearing Up
Sit back, we’re about to get a little scientific on you. When the Venice canals are full of boats, all the sediment on the bottom gets stirred up, creating constantly cloudy water. With the lack of tourists due to shutdowns and quarantines, the sediments have been able to settle, showing off almost crystal clear water for the first time in years. You can even see small schools of fish swimming around, much to the delight of the locals. All over Italy, there are reports of dolphins returning to the coasts, wildlife roaming the streets and nature taking back a little bit of the space we’ve been occupying.
Looking Out For Our Elderly
We’re sure you’ve heard enough about panic-buying and toilet paper for the rest of your life, so here’s something positive that’s happening in a few countries worldwide, including our neighbour Australia–elderly-only shopping hour. We’ve all heard how elderly are the most vulnerable to the virus (and probably not well suited to fighting it out over the last packet of toilet paper), so supermarkets around the world are opening for a special hour for our seniors to shop without hordes of other people around. Although supermarket's in NZ are yet to make any changes, a worker at a supermarket in Levin brightened everyone's day with an enthusiastic rendition of "If you're happy and you know it" over the loudspeaker to a crowd of elderly, managing to get all them all clapping and laughing by the end of the song.
Pollution Levels Are Down Worldwide
With people choosing to self-isolate at home, workplaces shutting down and travel decreasing worldwide, air pollution levels were bound to be affected. In China, satellite images from NASA show a huge decrease in the amount air pollution from cars and industrial factories, and in Wuhan, this pollution practically disappeared–and it only took a matter of a few weeks. Breathing clean air lengthens life expectancy too, so it's not only good for the environment but good for our lungs, too!
Singing In The Streets
This tourist hotspot has been hit pretty hard, but the Italians are not letting the virus get them down. Italy has been in lockdown for over a week now, with all public places closed and Italians stuck in their homes. They’ve combatted this isolation in what we think is the most Italian way, by singing together from their balconies. You can check out videos of them singing together above, we’re sure it’ll put a smile on your face.
Wellington Student Army Mobilised
The Wellington Student Army was formed back in 2016 in response to the Kaikoura earthquake, and they're back again to help out the vulnerable people in their local community. They're not an actual army, just a group of students who wanted to help out the community. They're offering to lend a hand to those in self-isolation with any errands or grocery runs that need to be done. It's little acts of kindness like these that will help us all get through this and keep those positive vibes going.
Looking for ways you can spread some kindness? Find out ways you can support local businesses during COVID-19 here.
Image credit: Zac Harris, Andrea Pattaro