Marc Silver

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7:03am

Fri July 3, 2015
Goats and Soda

Peruvian Sisters Can Turn A Gourd Into An $800 Objet D'Art

Originally published on Fri July 3, 2015 10:23 pm

Standing in their backyard in Cochas Grande, Peru, Katya and Blanca Cantos, hold the fruit of their labor. The gourd at left shows scenes from a potato harvest. The just-started gourd at right will tell the story of an ancestor's epic trek.
Josh Cogan Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archive, Smithsonian Institution

Their gourds tell a story — and earn them a living. That gourd in the photo — the one on the left? It is covered with miniature pictures of a potato harvest in Peru. There's even a wee burro hauling the day's crop.

That gourd will sell for around $800.

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5:34pm

Thu July 2, 2015
Goats and Soda

Yes, There Really Is A Town In Liberia Called 'Smell No Taste'

Originally published on Fri July 3, 2015 8:19 am

This is a photo taken in the town of Smell No Taste, where a teenager died of Ebola this past week. The home where he passed away is now under quarantine.
Abbas Dulleh AP

A curious detail appeared in stories about the death this week of a 17-year-old boy from Ebola.

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3:26pm

Mon June 29, 2015
Goats and Soda

The U.S. Now Has A 'Girls Count' Law. But Don't Boys Count, Too?

Originally published on Tue June 30, 2015 9:55 am

Children in Bangladesh display their birth registration cards.
Jannatul Mawa UNICEF

The world needs to count its girls!

That's the message that President Obama sent earlier this month when he signed the Girls Count Act into law. Congress had previously approved the act by unanimous vote.

There are 220 million children around the world who are uncounted. They were not registered at birth, and they don't have birth certificates.

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7:03am

Sat June 27, 2015
Goats and Soda

A Boy Won't Let A Lion Get His Goat

A little boy and his goat have an encounter with a painted lion in West Bengal, India.
Courtesy of Partha Kar

A boy, a goat and a lion.

Those are the stars of an award-winning photo called Friendship.

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6:20pm

Fri June 19, 2015
Goats and Soda

Guess Which Country Has The Biggest Increase In Soda Drinking

Originally published on Sat June 20, 2015 1:22 am

Vietnam is seeing an increase in soda drinking.
STEPHEN SHAVER BLOOMBERG NEWS

Soda is at the crossroads.

The U.S. is still a world leader in taking the pause that refreshes (and causes weight gain).

But soda drinking is flat or declining in the West. The reasons are many: Health consciousness. Bottled water. Energy drinks.

So the Big Soda companies are spending money to develop new markets in low- and middle-income countries. In some of these places, people are earning a bit more than a few years before, so they have more money for soda.

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3:40pm

Thu June 18, 2015
Goats and Soda

What We Can Learn From A Herd Of Hungry Goats

Originally published on Mon June 22, 2015 9:05 am

via Youtube

Now that's a gaggle of goats!

There are about 700 of them in the video. They belong to the California business Goats R Us, which keeps 8,000 goats on hand, renting them out to graze on brush, thistles and other undesired plants.

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7:16pm

Wed June 17, 2015
Goats and Soda

It's Time To Pay Attention To 'Below-The-Belt' Cancers

Originally published on Thu June 18, 2015 9:29 am

Kenyan women visit an outreach team from Marie Stopes, a reproductive health organization that can screen for and treat cervical cancer.
Jonathan Torgovnik Getty Images

When an email arrived the other day promoting an "Interfaith Service Focused on Below the Belt Cancers," I was intrigued.

It turns out Thursday, June 18, is the start of the third "Globe-athon to End Women's Cancers." To kickoff this continuing campaign, there will be two days of events in New York City dedicated to making people more aware of the cancers that strike more than 1 million women a year and figuring out the best strategies for diagnosis and treatment.

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3:37pm

Thu June 4, 2015
Goats and Soda

Sexual Violence Against Children Is A Global Problem But Few Get Help

Aly Hurt/NPR

A new survey from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that sexual violence against children is a global problem.

Seven countries were surveyed from 2007 to 2013. The first was Swaziland, which wanted to assess and address the problem. The rate of sexual violence against girls was 36.7 percent. Additional countries asked to be surveyed as well. Young people from the age of 13 to 24 were interviewed, with a range of 1,000 to 2,000 for each gender.

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10:23am

Thu June 4, 2015
Goats and Soda

Your Moment Of Baby Goat Bliss

Originally published on Thu June 4, 2015 11:25 am

Screengrab from Sunflower Farm Creamery video.
Sunflower Farm Creamery/Youtube

It seems the bad news just won't stop coming.

That boat accident in China.

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10:23am

Wed June 3, 2015
Goats and Soda

A New U.N. Health Goal Targets Folks 69 And Under. Ageism Or Realism?

The U.N. wants better health for older folks, like nomadic herder Mijiddorj Ayur of South Gobi, Mongolia.
John W. Poole NPR

In September, the U.N. will vote to adopt 17 Sustainable Development Goals (aka SDGs). They cover issues like poverty, health and climate change. The idea is to encourage the 192 U.N. member states to establish policies that will make the world a better place over the next 15 years.

At least one SDG is turning out to be a bit controversial.

This particular goal calls for a reduction in "premature mortality" from non-communicable diseases like cancer, stroke and dementia by half in people younger than 50 and by a third among people from 50 to 69.

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1:10pm

Sat May 30, 2015
Goats and Soda

It's A 'Year Of Fear' For Kids, U.N. Says. Can We Make Things Better?

Afghan children look on at a refugee camp in Jalalabad on May 3, 2015. Like thousands of Afghan returnees, Neik Mohammad became unwanted in Pakistan after a Taliban massacre at a Peshawar school, forcing him to return home to a life of misery and fear in a squalid refugee settlement.
SHAH MARAI AFP/Getty Images

It's a "year of fear" for children.

That's how Gordon Brown put it in a speech this month. He's the former British Prime Minister who is now the U.N. special envoy for global education. And he's worried about kids.

"This is not the year of the child but the year of fear," he said, "with 2015 already the worst year since 1945 for children being displaced, the worst year for children becoming refugees, the worst year for children seeing their schools attacked."

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3:16pm

Wed May 20, 2015
Goats and Soda

I'd Like To Buy The Emerging World A Coke

Originally published on Wed May 20, 2015 4:13 pm

A woman walks past an ad for Coca-Cola in Bamako, the capital of the Republic of Mali.
New York Daily News Archive NY Daily News via Getty Images

So who does drink the most soda in the world, anyway?

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4:08pm

Tue May 19, 2015
Goats and Soda

A 10-Year-Old Makes A Video So We 'Don't Forget Nepal'

Originally published on Tue May 19, 2015 4:53 pm

Lucas met this woman who lost her home and all her children except for one daughter.
Donatella Lorch for NPR

Like mother, like son.

Lucas Zutt is the 10-year-old son of journalist Donatella Lorch, who frequently contributes to Goats and Soda. They've lived in Kathmandu since June 2013.

Lucas shared his impressions of the earthquake with NPR after it struck. And now he's made a video.

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12:04pm

Thu May 14, 2015
Goats and Soda

Are You Smarter Than A 15-Year-Old?

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 5:23 pm

TRAVEL TIME
OECD

"How well do today's schools prepare for tomorrow's world?"

That's the question in a new report from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. This group administers the Program for International Student Assessment to 15-year-olds in 75 countries. The goal is to find out whether they can use their math and science knowledge to answer a series of questions that measure skills needed for young people to make a contribution to the economy.

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1:01pm

Thu May 7, 2015
Goats and Soda

On Saturday, The Ebola Outbreak In Liberia Should Officially Be Over

Originally published on Thu May 7, 2015 3:31 pm

Lucy Barh, head of the Liberian Midwives Association, says of the impending end of the Ebola outbreak: "It is a joy, it is a joy. And I am so grateful to God. The Lord almighty has love for this nation. That is why we have come to this point."
Jason Beaubien NPR

In just two days, Liberia will celebrate what seemed an impossible dream last summer: the end of its Ebola outbreak.

Saturday, May 9 will mark the 42nd day of no new Ebola cases in the country. A person with Ebola typically shows symptoms within 21 days of exposure. But the World Health Organization adds an extra 21 days for extra caution before declaring that an outbreak has ended. So on Saturday, WHO officials and President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf will announce that Liberia is Ebola-free.

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