2018: The Stories That Inspired Us

Every year, we look back at the good news we found, news that helps us be better, more hopeful, more active planet parents. And despite all the tough climate news this year, we found some amazing stories. We track the themes that inspire us so we can look back at the stories that resonate most.

1. The Kids Will Save Us If We Let Them.

This was the year the kids’ fight for their future reached new heights. From Our Children’s Trust to Greta Thunberg and the School Strike for Climate to This Is Zero Hour, the young people of the world got mad, and got loud.

Our favorite story came from India in August, where students (very politely) started sending single-use packaging back to the source.

2. Environmental Art

We search for environmental art that connects us to the planet we parent, and to other folks feeling what we feel, past and present. Our favorite environmental art post this year was about “The Nomenclature of Colours,” written in 1814 and used by Charles Darwin to describe the colors he saw on his journey. It is a beautiful reminder of the complexity of our planet.

3. Center Indigenous Knowledge

The places that are managed by the people indigenous to those places are healthier, more diverse and more vibrant. This year, our favorite story on this theme came from Colorado, where a landowner gave land back to the Ute tribe who held it sacred. Let’s hope for more of this in 2019.

4. Heroes to Know

Our favorite hero story shows us that everyone can do something to help. We just need to find that thing, and act.  Donna Stumphf can garden. And it mattered a lot (3727 pounds worth) to her food bank.

5. Not Extinct Yet

Every year, we celebrate dozens of stories of struggling little species hanging on, and the scientists, researchers, and volunteers fighting to save them. Our favorite story was about a group of Sei Whales, who found a clever way to survive - hiding in a pod of other whales.

6. It’s All Connected

Climate Change is connected to everything. But that means that the solutions can affect everything too, and that’s both exciting and inspiring. This year, we were inspired by many stories of those connections, none more than The Plastic Bank, a program that is improving thousands of lives in Haiti, and cleaning plastic out of the ocean at the same time.

7. Everything We Need Is Here Already.

From microbes to mosses, there are lots of stories of solutions that are here already. But our favorite, this year, was about beavers or "ecological and hydrological Swiss army knives.” Ecosystems that have beavers can be amazingly healthy, and that can make a huge difference to our future.

8. Find Awe

Finding little bursts of awe in our lives, in our media, in our world is key to our spiritual and mental resilience. Our most popular moment of awe this year was a wonderful little duck daycare worker capably managing up to 76 babies at once.

A lot of people became planet parents in 2018. It’s a hard journey, but there are so many stories that inspire us to continue connecting to the planet and each other. We need these stories to build our strength to do more, act more, risk more, and save more. May we do even better in 2019.

© Parents for the Planet, LLC 2015-2019