From: St Osmunds
180 children are currently held in the prisons of Madagascar accused of stealing vanilla. They are often held in appalling conditions for years without a proper trial. Many children around the world suffer a similar fate. In Madagascar, selling vanilla is a trading policy, it sells for at least $150 in exporting markets . Stealing vanilla is a highly common crime there. It is a big business for the African island, an expensive commodity and people will try to get hold of it and sell it to make some more money for their often very poor families. Children are suffering a great deal in Madagascar just for stealing something as small as vanilla. The prison conditions there are abysmal. All these children have are concrete beds without mattresses and all are confined to tiny cells, cramped together. They are prisoners alongside 2000 other adults, many of whom have committed really big crimes and the prisons are only meant to hold 280 prisoners. Some haven't seen their mums in years because their families are very poor and can't travel to the prison. A BBC investigation dated 1st October 2019, found out that many of these children can spend more than 3 years in prison for that theft without even a trial. And when they go to trial, most of them don't even get a lawyer to defend them. In prison, they are miserable, dirty and only get one meal a day and no-one to care for them when they fall ill. Those are only some of the many children being held in prisons across the globe, children in Iraq are being punished because of things their parents did , Palestinian children have been captured and are being put into Iran's prisons for doing nothing more than protesting against grown up politics.  Innocent children everywhere are suffering in terrible conditions, they only have each other to rely on. According to the latest figures from Human Rights Watch and the UN's Child Fund, UNICEF, an estimated 1 million children are behind bars around the world today. In my eyes, it's  wrong to send children to jail at such young ages, in such poor living spaces. Human wrights groups are protesting against this but people in power just won't listen ! By Zandile Photo Cred : Getty Images
UK
From: St Osmunds
With a general election coming up on 12th December, here's some information about the main parties and their pledges. Conservatives: The conservative party are split into two main groups: pro-brexit, and anti-brexit. Boris Johnson is part of the pro-brexit section, despite writing a huge article on why he thought brexit was a bad idea the day before the brexit referendum. In other words, he's going along with the public. Right now, Boris is claiming to add more police to the streets and more money to schools and hospitals. " only way of getting brexit done." Said Johnson after the Brexit deadline was delayed. Labour: Labour claim that their manifesto is to tackle climate emergency, end food banks in Britain and to rewrite the rules of economy so that it works for everyone - not just billionaires. They pledge to deliver a million genuinely affordable homes and a million climate jobs across every region and nation in the UK. Under certain conditions, Labour will hold a second referendum on Brexit. Liberal Democrats: The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity.
From: Barnes
Unfortunately, within the next 15 years, 2 million Horse Chestnut trees could be wiped out in the UK, destroying the entire population of this tree in the UK. This is due to ravaging of moths and a tree disease spreading throughout Europe. Research shows that many Chestnut trees are filled with pests and diseases and many forest fires have wiped out a large number of them. The moths came to Southern England around 13 years ago and they have been wrecking the UK's population of Chestnuts since 2006.  Researchers tested the Chestnut trees survival skills and planted some trees that had been germinated and within three years the majority had died and by year five all of them had been wiped out. It turned out that the majority of the trees had been destroyed by moths and caterpillars. In addition, if chestnut trees were to be wiped out, then the UK Conker Championships would be destroyed, which means the amazing prize of £400,000 wouldn't be on offer. “It’s a bit of a concern but I think one of the biggest concerns is the human reaction to it. We’re quite keen to cut the trees down because they represent a bit of a danger to people with branches dropping off once the trees become ill," says John Burkett, one of the conker championship's organisers.
From: Barnes
Sir David Attenborough has been awarded a Green Blue Peter badge and is overjoyed to be able to have one. After years of his documentaries, Sir David has received the badge for bringing the natural world springing to life and inspiring some young people to protect and care for the natural environment (he has already taken care of the environment himself). Having already achieved his Gold Blue Peter badge, he now has a Green Blue Peter badge. Surprisingly, these Green Blue Peter badges are made of plastic yogurt pots!!! Sir David Attenborough was over the moon when he received the Green Blue Peter badge and thanked Lindsey Russell, the Blue Peter badge presenter.