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Ever Wonder What Happens to Leftover Crayons?

The Crayon Initiative began when father Bryan Ware wondered what happened to the old crayons his kid used at restaurants. It turns out that not only are they not recyclable, they’re toxic to the environment - and typically wind up in landfills after they are thrown away. He had an idea: what if they were melted down and used to make new crayons for kids in need? He decided to do just that, and now hundreds of volunteers are helping The Crayon Initiative to upcycle them by the thousands in to new ones he sends to sick children in hospitals. They’ve even created a new design that’s easier for kids to hold. It’s an inspiring tale of how a simple, clever idea - plus dedication, hard work, and a community of volunteers - can make a real difference.

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Catalysts
Could This Be the Future of Foster Care?
Could This Be the Future of Foster Care?
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Catalysts
Could This Be the Future of Foster Care?

Take a look inside a town built for foster families

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Peppers Ranch is a community of a dozen families raising at least five foster kids. Is it a model for providing better foster care to more kids?

In this episode of Catalysts, we visit Peppers Ranch and meet some of the people and families who call it home. We talk to foster child Scott, who was close to aging out of foster care but unprepared to live on his own.…

#fixingjustice - Policing
Why the 6th Most Dangerous City is Turning to Community Policing
Why the 6th Most Dangerous City is Turning to Community Policing
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#fixingjustice - Policing
Why the 6th Most Dangerous City is Turning to Community Policing

Police departments around the country are increasingly looking at community policing programs as a tool to help reestablish trust in…

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While community policing programs are nothing new, they fell out of popularity after a big push in the early 90s due to shifting priorities and budget crunches of the Great Recession. But with growing scrutiny of police and their often strained relationships with minority communities, police departments are increasingly looking to community policing programs to bridge the gap and rebuild trust.

The Rockford Police Department (RPD) is no exception…

Dispatches
Unlike Smoking, Vaping Won't Mess With Your Microbiome
Unlike Smoking, Vaping Won't Mess With Your Microbiome
Dispatches
Unlike Smoking, Vaping Won't Mess With Your Microbiome

Smoking kills off good bacteria and upsets the balance of power your gut.

By Dan Bier

Smoking kills off good bacteria and upsets the balance of power your gut.

Crossing The Divide
The Conservative Radio Host Urging People to Break Out of Their Bubbles
The Conservative Radio Host Urging People to Break Out of Their Bubbles
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Crossing The Divide
The Conservative Radio Host Urging People to Break Out of Their Bubbles
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Charlie Sykes, a conservative radio host and author of "How the Right Lost Its Mind", explains the dangers of “alternative facts” and why he thinks they are a threat to democracy.

Wrong
Did the Food Pyramid Make Us Fat?
Did the Food Pyramid Make Us Fat?
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Wrong
Did the Food Pyramid Make Us Fat?
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To address rising health problems in the 1980s, scientists and policymakers developed the US Food Pyramid to encourage healthy eating. But despite a massive public education campaign, obesity and diabetes continued to rise. What happened? How did we get it so… wrong?

Pop Revolution
How Skate Punks are Ushering in a New Era of Freedom in Myanmar
How Skate Punks are Ushering in a New Era of Freedom in Myanmar
Pop Revolution
How Skate Punks are Ushering in a New Era of Freedom in Myanmar

For decades, Myanmar, also known as Burma, was ruled by a repressive military junta. Then, in 2011, things began to…

By Michael O'Shea

For decades, Myanmar, also known as Burma, was ruled by a repressive military junta. Then, in 2011, things began to change.

Pop Revolution
Skatepunks of Myanmar
Skatepunks of Myanmar
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Pop Revolution
Skatepunks of Myanmar

Is the booming skating scene in Myanmar a sign of a more hopeful future for the once isolated country?

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After years of repression, smartphones and social media are giving Myanmar a taste of the outside world. And young people are eager to catch up on what they missed. We join a group of skaters who are reimagining life in the once isolated society and shaping its future in the process.

On The Cusp
This Week in Ideas: The End of Checkout Lines, Photoshopping Your Voice, and a New Way…
This Week in Ideas: The End of Checkout Lines, Photoshopping Your Voice, and a New Way…
On The Cusp
This Week in Ideas: The End of Checkout Lines, Photoshopping Your Voice, and a New Way…

Amazon's new grocery store, Adobe's new tech can make you say anything, and pay for the bus by watching an…

By Mike Riggs

Amazon's new grocery store, Adobe's new tech can make you say anything, and pay for the bus by watching an ad.

Culture
This Army Sergeant Started a 24-Hour Hotline For Service Members with PTSD
This Army Sergeant Started a 24-Hour Hotline For Service Members with PTSD
Culture
This Army Sergeant Started a 24-Hour Hotline For Service Members with PTSD

First Sgt. Landon Jackson battled with severe PTSD and turned his experience into a 24 hour hotline that gives service…

By Mike Riggs

First Sgt. Landon Jackson battled with severe PTSD and turned his experience into a 24 hour hotline that gives service members an outlet whenever they need it.