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Dr Geehee is a 'laughter professional', a Special Clown bringing fun and jollity to sick children in hospital. She's a therapeutic jester hell bent on spreading the infection of smiles.  

By Vida Adamoli

 

Laughter, it is said, is the best medicine. It's the 'wonder drug' that combats stress, relaxes muscles, reduces pain, boosts the immune system, gives hope and helps create a positive emotional environment. 

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Time Magazine nominated Bono as Person of the Year for being 'shrewd about doing good, for rewiring politics and re-engineering justice, for making mercy smarter and hope strategic and then daring the rest of us to follow.'

By Vida Adamoli

 

Bono, front man and main lyricist of the Irish band U2, is the image of a rock star, complete with chin stubble and tinted glasses. He's also a humanitarian activist using his fame to create positive change.

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Ruth Altbeker Cyprys was deported to the Polish extermination camp, Treblinka, with her 2-year-old daughter. She tells the extraordinary story of her escape from the fast-moving cattle truck and subsequent fight to survive in Nazi occupied Poland in A Jump for Life.

Review by Alex Canfor-Dumas

 

The Warsaw Ghetto was a place of unbelievable suffering. Established in Poland’s capital during the German Occupation in the Second World War, it housed 440.000 people in an area of less than three square miles.

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A team of British animators has produced a human heart so realistic it will transform surgical training.

  

Five hundred years ago Leonardo da Vinci transformed our understanding of the heart. Famous as a painter, sculptor and inventor, he also made detailed studies of the human body. One of his great discoveries was how heart valves eddy the flow of blood. Inspired by one of his drawings, a British heart surgeon pioneered a new way of repairing damaged hearts.

Now a brilliant team of British animators has taken the next leap. Using skills honed in the world of TV commercials and the entertainment industry, they have produced a human heart so realistic it will transform surgical training.

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Pangea Day - 10 May 2008 - is a remarkable program of films, talks and events celebrating our common humanity. If you think of yourself as something of a global soul, it could be one of the year's highlights. If you missed it or want to revisit, a one hour package of highlights is available here.

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A 14-year-old girl in Sierra Leone is taking on all-comers in her struggle to better the lives of her country's children.

 

'We go to street children and we go out to centres that help girls that have been raped. We ask them how they feel and they tell us - so we go back to our network and sit as a group and make plans on what should be done, present them and take them to the leaders and make sure that there is something being done.'

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Transforming the appearance of the sprawling slums of Rio and Sao Paolo is more than just art - it's a mix of political statement and social project, too, explains Vida Adamoli

 

In 2004 Dutch artists, Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn, were in Brazil filming a documentary. While doing so they often visited the favelas of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. It seemed to them that the monotonous brick housing stacked up the steep hillsides symbolised the hopeless life of the people who inhabited them - people for whom gun-toting, glue sniffing and crime was the norm. Jeroen and Dre wracked their brains as to how they could help.

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