A baby plays alongside a woman braiding rope for the Q'eswachaka Bridge reconstruction.

Rice and Roses Project Feeds Homeless Community in Malaysia

With development rising rapidly in George Town, the capital city in the Malaysian island of Penang, the homeless rate is growing just as quickly. Mohd Bukhari Mohd Noor and his colleagues started the program Rice and Roses to mobilize his community to feed the homeless. Volunteers deliver food to homeless individuals in the middle of the night and offer hot meals at specific locations during the day, where they also hold free literacy workshops to educate street children.

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Historical Preservation

From the depths of a volcano to the density of a forest, people around the world are preserving natural wonders in their home cities. A docent at Mount Vesuvius shares why he has devoted his life to the volcano that destroyed much of the area in previous generations. A man in Hong Kong leads neighbors in a fight to preserve a historic forest that has become polluted.

Videos produced by RAI in Naples, Italy and RTHK in Hong Kong.

Living With Water

Great water demands require greater water solutions to keep big cities afloat.

Water activists combat climate change and illegal wetland development that is causing towns to flood in Argentina. Graciela Capodoglio founded the Natural Reserve of Pilar to preserve the floodplain ecosystem in the province of Buenos Aires.

In Mexico City, citizens formed an organization using innovative education models and technologies to address the city’s water shortage issues.

Videos produced by Construir TV in Argentina and SPR in Mexico.

Sustainable Urban Farming

Maintaining a sustainable way of life through organic farming is possible — even in big cities. In this episode, a woman in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro shows us how to maximize every last bit of local produce, while urban dwellers and beekeepers in Paris are developing a culture of sharing in rooftop gardens.

Videos produced by TAL in Brazil and QLM in France.

Heart of the City

The heart of many large cities lies in their historic neighborhoods but across the world, the cultural vitality of these neighborhoods is threatened by the forces of gentrification and aging infrastructure. Hear from the people of Boyle Heights in Los Angeles and the Old Quarter in Hanoi, Vietnam as they work to improve and preserve their communities.

Bringing Life to Public Spaces

Two groups strive to reinvigorate public spaces amid blocky apartment structures and rigid urban development. An artist collective from Spain travels the globe to create murals that draw life back into dwindling public centers. In Medellin, Colombia, urban gardeners create green spaces that beautify the community and empower its citizens.

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    Link TV

Cooperative Housing

People are rethinking housing arrangements in growing cities across the globe. Many are ditching the confines of traditional apartments and opting for communal living. In Seoul, three families band together to build the home of their dreams and the urban support system they’ve never had. On a larger scale, participants in a housing cooperative in Lyon band together to share space and the responsibilities of homeownership in a Vertical Village.

Featuring segments by KBS and QLM.

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    Link TV

Immigrant Support Systems

Big cities attract dreamers from all over the world. This episode features the people building communities of inclusion for immigrants.

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    Link TV

Helping Hands

Many people enjoy the anonymity found in city living, but this also creates dangers for more vulnerable people like the homeless and elderly.

In Malaysia, an organization called Rice & Roses feeds the needy, paying particular attention to those living on the streets of Georgetown, Penang. The group of volunteers prepares meals and delivers them, and offers free education to street children.

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    Link TV

Traditional Practices

Looking back to traditional practices can help us find modern solutions to various environmental and social issues of city life.

In Q'ewe, Peru, we follow Victoriano Arizapana, a Native leader nicknamed “The Engineer” as he leads the construction of the Q’eswachaka bridge. Residents from four different communities participate in the three-day construction of a traditional rope bridge using ancestral techniques taught through their Inca heritage.

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    Link TV

Traffic Alternatives

Urban planners and average citizens around the world are working to improve transportation in congested cities. In Bangkok, an architect fed up with his daily commute studies the combination of traditional boats and modern trains to beat traffic. In Bogota, a professor and his students develop a citywide electric car sharing system to ease congestion in dense urban areas.

Videos by Thai PBS in Thailand and TAL in Colombia.