‘Are a cow’s farts the worst for the planet?’ Children’s climate questions answered

What are young people most worried about? We put their queries to the experts How long until the climate crisis causes irreversible damage? Ewoenam Tetteh and Faith Otasowie, both 15, Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex You are obviously both smart and thoughtful kids, so I will be blunt and tell you that climate change is already causing big changes in our world. You can see this in the melting of the ice sheets in the Arctic and Antarctica, in the rising temperatures in cities around the world, in the changes in how much rain we get, and, perhaps most importantly, in the extinction of many plants and animals that are not able to adapt. One of the most important ideas to grasp about …

Virtual visits: how Finland is coping with an ageing population | Sarah Johnson

Online lunch clubs are the start of a remote care revolution to reduce the spiralling costs of caring for older people Its 11.30am on a midweek June morning in Helsinki, Finland. Duvi Leineberg, a remote care nurse, is doing the lunch rounds. But instead of jumping in a car and visiting each person one by one, she is sitting in an office looking at a large computer screen where she can see into seven peoples homes. Most are sitting at a table preparing to tuck into some food. This is a virtual lunch group, set up to make sure older people receiving home care services in the city eat regularly and at the right time. Leineberg runs the session. She …

‘I wouldn’t be the refugee, I’d be the girl who kicked ass’: how taekwondo made me

The long read: When she arrived in the US as a 10-year-old refugee, Dina Nayeri found it hard to fit in. But that all changed when she hatched a plan to get into Harvard by becoming a taekwondo champion When I was 13, three years after arriving in the US with my mother and brother, I devised a plan to get into the Ivy League. I was a refugee kid with no money and I lived in Iran, she had done horse-riding and tennis. But then the revolution happened, and her sporty body was draped and forgotten. Banned from public exercise, she took to pounding her ass against walls to get that chic, saddle-flattened effect of the late 70s. Sometimes …

‘Dont pretend to be something youre not’: a letter to my teenage self

In an exclusive extract from gal-dems new book, three twentysomethings revisit their diaries and reflect on identity, sexuality and cultural heritage Samanthi Theminimulle, 24Diary entry, age 14 Today at school everyone laughed at me because I said pomangranate. Apparently its pomegranate. Ammi and Appachchi say pomangranate???? So embarrassing. Ive always said it wrong. Hi, 14-year-old meDo you remember when you pronounced pomegranate wrong in front of the entire class and everyone laughed? All eyes were on you as you stuttered your way through. You came home, fuming and self-conscious, and looked up the spelling. Of course it was pomegranate! How could your parents have got it so wrong? You said pom-e-granate one hundred times, until you were certain it would …

‘You get used to the gunfire’ filming the Libyan women’s football team

Denounced on TV, they train at secret locations watched by armed guards. We meet the woman from Hastings who made a fascinating film about Libyas guttsiest football squad Just what our country needs! rails the imam sarcastically on Libyan TV. A womens football team! And whats more, they chose tall, young beautiful girls for the team and for months their legs will be exposed. Womens football may be getting its moment in the spotlight with the World Cup about to kick off. But, as the absorbing new documentary revolution that brought Muammar Gaddafis reign to an end. It seemed to promise a new era of democracy and freedom including womens freedom to play football. That period was really joyous, says …

So beautiful I cried: Rachel Whiteread, Jeremy Deller and more on the thrill of the Venice Biennale

Jeremy Deller unleashed a yacht-throwing colossus and Rachel Whiteread hit the streets with a vacuum cleaner six leading artists recall representing Britain at the arts extravaganza I was Indian and it didnt matter Anish Kapoor, before the so-called YBAs (Young British Artists); they were just leaving art school. Exposure on this scale, in my mid-30s, was extraordinary. As an artist, you have a certain kind of language you are trying to get into the world. At Venice, I had the experience, for the first time, of people reflecting back to me the work telling me, if you like, what I was doing. At the pavilion we gave out can you believe it? the first-ever bag with my name on it. …

Homeless living beneath Hudson Yards welcome the new development

Members of the community who live in the tunnels beneath the glittering project see it as an opportunity to earn more, while others complain its not helping us Whatever the aesthetic judgement of Manhattans $25bn Hudson Yards development Pulitzer prize winning critic Jerry Saltz called it a corporate mega-monstrosity there is at least one group of city dwellers who are optimistic about the development: the homeless who live underneath it. For decades, the subway and rail tunnels beneath and around Hudson Yards have offered shelter of sorts for the citys homeless population, often those who, in the social caste system of the dispossessed, have cut themselves off by literally going underground. But now, two weeks after the vast residential, shopping, …

The Thai children putting a brave face on the horror of sexual abuse

Young survivors confront the world in their own hand-drawn masks for photographer Marieke van der Velden When photographer Down to Zero to do an awareness-raising project on Thai children who had been victims of commercial sexual exploitation, she was uncertain how to proceed. For obvious reasons, her subjects faces could not be shown. At home in Amsterdam, she wondered: might the children draw masks? She had a go at drawing her own face (completely impossible) and took a snap of her husband, posed behind her mask. This made her smile. She decided the young people could choose to draw themselves or someone else a person they would like to be. They were enthusiastic, she says: it must have been a …

Smooth, angry, cool, powerful: how we talk about blackness

Teacher and writer Jeffrey Boakye has encountered endless labels all of which have informed his experience of being black and British today. Here, he unpicks their meanings BLACK Ive been black since about 1988, when I was colouring in pictures of priests at Corpus Christi Roman Catholic primary school in Brixton Hill, south London. I remember it well. We were sharing tables and colouring pencils and I looked up to find that there were no more skin colour pencils available in the pencil pot. By skin colour, I mean a shade of pinkish beige that was a pretty spot-on facsimile of what we can call white, European skin. Caucasian colour. With a hint of tan. Tea with an overgenerous splash …

The dad who gave birth: Being pregnant doesn’t change me being a trans man

Transitioning meant that Freddy McConnell finally felt comfortable in his skin. Then he began a quest to conceive and carry his own child Freddy McConnell takes out his phone and shows me a film of his baby snoring contentedly. Jack is gorgeous, with blond hair, blue eyes and heavy eyelids, and McConnell is the classic doting dad albeit more hands-on than most. Its a year since he gave birth to Jack, an experience he describes as life-changing. He has also made an intimate and moving film about that experience, from the decision to have a baby, through pregnancy and the delivery. Everything is documented in close-up, including Jacks arrival in a hospital birthing pool. You might expect McConnell to be …

Murder on the allotment: ‘She was everything that he wanted to be’

She was the respected allotment committee secretary, he was an ambitious fellow plot holder: why did he kill her? In a corner of London, close to the busy Edgware Road, there is a secret garden. Tucked away on a residential street, the gate has the words Colindale Gardens and

Titania McGrath: laugh if you want, but wokes no joke

Lampooning the language of social justice is a cheap shot In Jean-Paul Sartres play Huis Clos, three characters are chucked into a room and forced to reality is equally inescapable, albeit in jollier surroundings and with a furry animal on hand. I feel your bemusement: why thank you, SparkNotes, you might say, but where are we going with this? In short: directly to hell. Longer version: nowhere good, but circuitously, via multiple grim stops connected by rail replacement buses that are driven by maniacs. To pass the time en route, we will be forced to watch repeats of Question Time and issued with brand-new copies of Titania McGraths Woke: A Guide to Social Justice. Occasionally the bus will stop and …

I was at the Lorena Bobbitt trial 25 years later it still makes me wince

The 90s case of the woman who cut off her husbands penis has been brought vividly to life by an Amazon series. But what was most shocking was the culture clash between the sexes The chocolate penises lingered in the memory. I didnt need a television show to remind me of those. The zoo outside the Virginia courthouse, packed with satellite trucks, local entrepreneurs hawking what we didnt yet call merch (including that phallic confectionery), protestors, campaigners, sympathisers, rubberneckers and assorted hangers-on I remembered that, too. And the snow on the ground, the winter cold that was still there, somewhere in the recesses of my mind. But the more arcane details of the Lorena Bobbitt case, the personalities of the …