With everything going on in the world lately, we could all use positive vibes. In the last few years, we’ve been through a global pandemic, financial and political upheavals, and myriad weather disasters. Despite all the bad news, there are still plenty of things to smile about. You probably won’t find these uplifting stories and acts of kindness on mainstream media programs, so we’ll compile a list for you below.

10 Positive Things Happening in the World to Make You Smile

If you’ve been doing a bit too much doomscrolling lately, we hope these stories will lift your spirits!

1 – Support for labor unions in the U.S. reached a 57-year-high.

A recent Gallup poll shows 71% of Americans approve of labor unions, slightly increasing from last year’s 68%. Union support was the highest in the 1950s, when about 75% of Americans agreed with labor organizations. Today, union drives have become more common as workers strive for better wages and bargaining power. Employees at some of the largest corporations in the world, such as Starbucks, Amazon, and Chipotle, have unionized.

2 – Demand for solar energy surged

Analysts predict global solar demand will increase by thirty percent by the end of 2022. Rob Barnett, a senior clean energy analyst at Bloomberg, estimates that solar capacity installations will rise by 30% globally this year. He also forecasts sustained double-digit growth in sustainable energy demand through 2025.

3 – New technology emerges that will make takeout food free of plastics.

Lithuanian researchers developed the world’s first plastic-free takeout food container. They designed the container using cardboard covered with a non-flammable material so consumers can reheat it in the oven. They come in three different sizes to accommodate various types of foods. Best of all, the containers are recyclable and compostable to show kindness to the environment.


4 – Teenager finds a way to help end illegal elephant poaching.

A 17-year-old created a simple tool to catch African elephant poachers in real time. Anika Puri developed ElSa (short for elephant savior), a low-cost prototype of machine-learning-driven software. It detects movement patterns in thermal infrared videos of humans and elephants. ElSa consists of a $250 FLIR ONE Pro thermal camera with 206×156 pixel resolution plugged into an iPhone 6. The devices then attach to a drone that flies over wilderness areas to monitor movement.

5 – The north American bison population progresses toward a comeback.

Here’s another show of kindness to animals. Sixteen bison introduced into Banff National Park in 2017 grew to a herd of at least 85.

Bison, considered an integral part of ecosystems, disappeared from Banff National Park for about 160 years before being reintroduced into the area. Parks Canada transferred 16 plains bison — 10 young females and six young males — from a herd in Elk Island National Park to the national park in 2017. Park officials accounted that the herd is thriving in their new environment and will keep monitoring their progress.

6 – Los Angeles high school students bought their favorite teacher a car.

Math teacher Julio Castro had to commute four hours to work each day by scooter and bus. After hearing about his grueling trek, YULA Boys High School students wanted to do something positive for him. When Castro got to the school one day, he had no idea they would surprise him with a car. The generous students had raised $30,000 to buy him a beautiful 2019 Mazda 3 hatchback!

woman surprises student
This kind woman raised the money to purchase a car for a deserving student.

7 – Teenagers at an airport went above and beyond to help an older man.

A Reddit user described a heartwarming act of kindness she witnessed recently:

“I was at the Phoenix airport a couple of weeks ago. An older gentleman sat next to me at our gate. Both his feet were wrapped in some sort of bandage and he was struggling to get around with a cane. On his other side were a pair of teenagers just giggling over kitten videos on their phones. They were strangers but made sure this man got helped to the restroom, had a drink, carried his bag, got to his seat, and had access to a wheelchair when he got off the plane! It was seamlessly selfless. The kids are alright. They really are. I’m 47. I am seeing it around me so often.” — u/GoingApeCostume

Another user also had positive things to say about the younger generations:

“I’m a high school counselor and high schoolers today think a hell of a lot more compassionately, empathically, and globally than I did when I was in high school (20 years ago). I’m very hopeful for the future.” — u/aibrah1

9 – MMA fighter does a kind deed.

Jon Cena flew to Amsterdam to meet a teenage fan who had to flee Ukraine.

Misha, a non-verbal teen with Down’s Syndrome, didn’t understand why his family had to leave Mariupol, Ukraine. When the boy’s mom told him the news, Misha became anxious and stressed. To appease Misha, his mom told him they were traveling to meet his hero, John Cena.

At the time, she had no idea this story would become reality. When Cena heard about the family’s story, he flew to Amsterdam to meet them! The WWE star gave Misha a positive experience with kindness in an otherwise scary, dark time in his life.

9 – We saw progress in the fight to end colorectal cancer.

A small rectal cancer drug trial saw tumors disappear in every patient. In a recent trial testing the experimental colorectal cancer drug Dostarlimab, tumors vanished in all 14 patients. They remained in remission one year after taking the medication and no longer needed chemotherapy or surgery in follow-up treatments. It marks an unprecedented breakthrough in the quest to cure cancer.

10 – An elephant shows compassion and befriends a child.

An elephant returned a toddler’s shoe after she dropped it into a zoo enclosure.

When a young girl lost her sandal while visiting a zoo in Weihai, China, a 25-year-old elephant stopped to help. The sweet animal used its trunk to give the sandal back to the youngster. Then, the child returned the positive gesture with her own kindness by feeding the elephant some grass. What a heartwarming story!

Final Thoughts on Positive Stories Around the Globe

Amidst the constant turmoil and depressing news over the past few years, we could all use a break. Hopefully, these positive news stories above will add positivity to your day and give you a reason to smile! When the world seems scary, always remember that darkness cannot exist without light.