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Positive Changes in Countries

Positive Changes in Countries, Part 45 of a Multi-part Series – Empowering Governments, Empowering Citizens: New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger

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New Zealand is a recipient of Shining World Leadership Awards for Compassion and Peace, and the laureate of two Shining World Leadership Awards for Climate-Change Mitigation, and Shining World Leadership Awards for Earth Conservation, Earth Protection, Earth Guardian, and Earth Restoration. In 2017, two types of Kiwi, the northern brown and the rowi, were removed from the endangered species list. We also have one of the world’s first law to create a smoke-free generation – by raising the age limit for smoking each year so that cigarettes will never be accessible to New Zealand’s future generations. The law is expected to come into effect in 2023. In 2022, New Zealand was ranked 4th globally in veganism, with the wise-minded population growing by 19% over the past two years and now up to 10% of New Zealanders have chosen the benevolent plant-based way of life.

Bordered by the Caribbean Sea on the east, Pacific to the west, Honduras in the north and Costa Rica in the south, Nicaragua is the largest country in Central America. Supported by legal policies and financing initiatives, women’s land title ownerships increased from 9.7% in 1989 to 51% in 2020. Under the Social Interest Housing Construction and Improvement Program, at the end of 2021, 10,454 Nicaraguan families had realized their dream of owning a decent home. Additionally, La Laguna, a town in the region of León, offers an array of exotic fruits and local vegan dishes based on homegrown ingredients. It was named the second most vegan-friendly destination by in celebrating the 2020 World Vegan Month.

Among the many historical and natural wonders of Niger, three were recognized as UNESCO World Heritage sites, the Historic Centre of Agadez, W National Park, and Air And Ténéré Natural Reserves. It is estimated that this re-greening has added over 200 million trees to Niger. As part of the Great Green Wall (GGW) project of the African Union, Niger aims to "green" 3.6 million hectares of land by 2030, approximately 37.5 percent of its territory. This June, the World Bank approved $191.5 million in financing to support a six-year program aiming to improve access, quality and equity in primary education and healthcare in Niger.
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