Check out the adorable and inventive way this woman is mapping her islands.

Durita Dahl Andreassen lives on a tiny cluster of islands where sheep outnumber people 2 to 1.


Durita and one of her sheep surveyors. All photos by Sheep View 360/Visit Faroe Islands.


They're called the Faroe Islands, and collectively they're a tiny self-governing archipelago in the North Atlantic.

You can find the Faroe Islands on a map, sure, but if you're interested in using Google Street View to take a virtual look around, don't bother.

The islands are so small, Google hasn't even ventured out there.

So when Durita, who works for the Faroes' tourist board, wanted to share her homeland in glorious 360-degree video with the rest of the world and encourage people to visit, she had to take matters into her own hands.

With no Google Street View cars stopping by in the near future, Durita found a solution using the islands' most abundant creatures: sheep.

Unlike Google Street View cars, sheep, armed with 360-degree cameras, can get to places on the island for views only they can see.

Durita wants to capture the most beautiful views her islands have to offer so Google will be more inclined to "put them on the map."

"My home country is beautiful, green and kind of undiscovered to the rest of the world — and I want to share it with the world," she said in a press release.

This sheep is the king of the world. The word "faroe" also means sheep in Danish, so the sheep pretty much own the place.

She's calling her project Sheep View 360.

Get it? It's like Street View but with sheep.

To get the project up and running, Durita enlisted the help of local shepherds who rounded up their most outgoing sheep for an initial trial to make sure the idea had legs (literally).

One of the sheep surveyors.

They gently attached a 360-degree camera, a mobile phone, and small solar panels to each sheep using a comfortable harness. This way the sheep can roam freely while sending back pictures and GPS coordinates to Durita. She then uploads those pictures to Google Street View, which — it turns out — anyone can do as long as they have images, coordinates, a camera, and a Wi-Fi-connected computer.

Sheep vision.

So far Sheep View has managed to capture panoramas from five distinct locations on the islands, and Durita has put together a fun 360-degree video from the perspective of one of their sheep surveyors.

There have only been two small hiccups so far: getting the cameras back from the sheep and losing the cameras.

Because the sheep are allowed to roam wherever they want, it's not the easiest to corral them back.

"We use dry food, but it doesn’t always work," Durita told Upworthy, explaining that the solution ended up being an old-fashioned one: "We’ve used the traditional way to get them back — herding dogs, and it works quite well.

GIF via Visit Faroe Islands/YouTube.

While Google has yet to contact Durita about mapping the Faroe Islands, the release of her Sheep View video should help.

If nothing else, Durita hopes Sheep View will bring some levity to a world that's experienced a lot of tragedy lately.

"A small idea from a small country … maybe it can bring some calmness to the world," Durita told Upworthy.

The Faroe Islands may be small, but this idea that perfectly (and hilariously) fuses the old world with the new is definitely big enough to attract some significant attention — and hopefully some visitors too.

Check out a this video about Sheep View 360 for more on the project and to see it in action:

Several years ago, you wouldn't have known what QAnon was unless you spent a lot of time reading through comments on Twitter or frequented internet chat rooms. Now, with prominent Q adherents making headlines for storming the U.S. Capitol and elements of the QAnon worldview spilling into mainstream politics, the conspiracy theory/doomsday cult has become a household topic of conversation.

Many of us have watched helplessly as friends and family members fall down the rabbit hole, spewing strange ideas about Democrats and celebrities being pedophiles who torture children while Donald Trump leads a behind-the-scenes roundup of these evil Deep State actors. Perfectly intelligent people can be susceptible to conspiracy theories, no matter how insane, which makes it all the more frustrating.

A person who was a true believer in QAnon mythology (which you can read more about here) recently participated in an "Ask Me Anything" thread on Reddit, and what they shared about their experiences was eye-opening. The writer's Reddit handle is "diceblue," but for simplicity's sake we'll call them "DB."

DB explained that they weren't new to conspiracy theories when QAnon came on the scene. "I had been DEEP into conspiracy for about 8 years," they wrote. "Had very recently been down the ufo paranormal rabbit hole so when Q really took off midterm for trump I 'did my research' and fell right into it."

DB says they were a true believer until a couple of years ago when they had an experience that snapped them out of it:

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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.

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via WFTV

Server Flavaine Carvalho was waiting on her last table of the night at Mrs. Potatohead's, a family restaurant in Orlando, Florida when she noticed something peculiar.

The parents of an 11-year-old boy were ordering food but told her that the child would be having his dinner later that night at home. She glanced at the boy who was wearing a hoodie, glasses, and a face mask and noticed a scratch between his eyes.

A closer look revealed a bruise on his temple.

So Carvalho walked away from the table and wrote a note that said, "Do you need help?" and showed it to the boy from an angle where his parents couldn't see.

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Images via Canva and Unsplash

If there's one thing that everyone can agree on, it's that being in a pandemic sucks.

However, we seem to be on different pages as to what sucks most about it. Many of us are struggling with being separated from our friends and loved ones for so long. Some of us have lost friends and family to the virus, while others are dealing with ongoing health effects of their own illness. Millions are struggling with job loss and financial stress due to businesses being closed. Parents are drowning, dealing with their kids' online schooling and lack of in-person social interactions on top of their own work logistics. Most of us hate wearing masks (even if we do so diligently), and the vast majority of us are just tired of having to think about and deal with everything the pandemic entails.

Much has been made of the mental health impact of the pandemic, which is a good thing. We need to have more open conversations about mental health in general, and with everything so upside down, it's more important now than ever. However, it feels like pandemic mental health conversations have been dominated by people who want to justify anti-lockdown arguments. "We can't let the cure be worse than the disease," people say. Kids' mental health is cited as a reason to open schools, the mental health challenges of financial despair as a reason to keep businesses open, and the mental health impact of social isolation as a reason to ditch social distancing measures.

It's not that those mental health challenges aren't real. They most definitely are. But when we focus exclusively on the mental health impact of lockdowns, we miss the fact that there are also significant mental health struggles on the other side of those arguments.

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