Heroes

After hearing this myth-buster, I'll never think the same again about paper bags, lettuce, or gold.

A real shift in thinking is needed, beyond our Prii and eco-conscious materials.

After hearing this myth-buster, I'll never think the same again about paper bags, lettuce, or gold.

Leyla Acaroglu makes the point that it's not just what goes into the materials a product is made from. Thinking about how the product will be used and how that usage will make an impact en masse is just as important a design element.


For instance, an electric tea kettle:

"But this is the thing, right? This is what I call a product-person failure. But we've got a product-system failure going on with these little guys, and they're so ubiquitous, you don't even notice they're there.

And this guy over here, though, he does. He's named Simon. Simon works for the national electricity company in the U.K. He has a very important job of monitoring all of the electricity coming into the system to make sure there is enough so it powers everybody's homes. He's also watching television. The reason he is because there's a unique phenomenon that happens in the U.K. the moment that very popular TV shows end. The minute the ad break comes on, this man has to rush to buy nuclear power from France because everybody turns their kettles on at the same time.

1.5 million kettles, seriously problematic. So imagine if you designed kettles, you actually found a way to solve these system failures because this is a huge amount of pressure on the system just because the product hasn't thought about the problem that it's going to have when it exists in the world. Now, I looked at a number of kettles available on the market and found the minimum fill lines. So the little piece of information that tells you how much you need to put in there was between two and a five-and-a-half cups of water just to make one cup of tea. So this kettle here is an example of one where it actually has two ... reservoirs. One's a boiling chamber, and one's the water holder. The user actually has to push that button to get their hot water boiled, which means — because we're all lazyyou only fill exactly what you need.

And this is what I call behavior-changing products: products, systems, or services that intervene and solve these problems up front."





True

If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.