Behold, the bindi. How one small dot can stop a deadly nutrient deficiency in its tracks.
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Gates Foundation

Many women and girls in India wear a small dot, called a bindi, on their foreheads.

Images by the Grey Group.


The bindi is traditionally used for religious purposes, to signify marriage, and for a number of other reasons.

But now it's being used to help save lives, thanks to the creative minds at ad agency the Grey Group and the Neelvasant Medical Foundation and Research Centre.

In India alone, 350 million people are at risk for iodine deficiency.

Iodine deficiency is the world's leading cause of brain damage. You don't hear much about iodine, but its role in the human body is incredibly important.

In pregnant women, a lack of iodine can result in cognitive birth defects or stillbirth.

While iodine deficiency is a problem around the globe, parts of rural India suffer greatly because iodized salt, the most widely used method for combatting iodine deficiency, is not readily available.

Supplements exist, but they're expensive.

Knowing this, Grey for Good, the philanthropic arm of Grey Group, developed the Life Saving Dot.

The back of each Life Saving Dot, or Jeevan Bindi, is coated in iodine, which turns it into a small iodine patch.

Over eight hours, each Jeevan Bindi delivers up to 150 micrograms of iodine through the skin.

That's 100% of the recommended amount for women!

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Best of all, a month's supply of Life Saving Dots is affordable!

30 days of dots costs 10 rupees, or 16 cents.

To get the dots where they're needed most, Grey for Good teamed up with the Neelvasant Medical Foundation and Research Centre, a non-governmental organization supporting rural and tribal populations in India.

The foundation identified groups in need and set up medical camps to deliver the innovative supplements.


So far, more than 30,000 women in over 100 villages have received these Life Saving Dots.

While it's not clear yet whether the bindis are entirely effective under every circumstance — for example, it's possible the iodine could evaporate over time when worn in extreme heat or other severe conditions — this is a huge step toward solving a serious global health crisis.

Learn more about Life Saving Dots in this short video:

Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

Ready for the weekend? Of course, you are. Here's our weekly dose of good vibes to help you shed the stresses of the workweek and put yourself in a great frame of mind.

These 10 stories made us happy this week because they feature amazing creativity, generosity, and one super-cute fish.

1. Diver befriends a fish with the cutest smile

Hawaiian underwater photographer Yuki Nakano befriended a friendly porcupine fish and now they hang out regularly.

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