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We all hear discouraging news about threats and damage to the environment, human rights, etc., and we only rarely hear about people and organizations worldwide who are responding and often finding solutions to these issues. Many of these stories can be found in this databse. The issues that this database seeks to address include peace, social justice, environmental concerns, ethnic conflict, corporate abuse, preservation of biological and cultural heritage, among others.

This collection of over 1,000 instances is intended to provide:

  • a source of information
  • a source of encouragement
  • A reminder that you are not struggling alone and that it is not hopeless

Included with the successes are also partial or temporary successes, promising but incomplete efforts, and failed efforts that are worth a second look. 


Actions can often be applied to different situations. For instance, a strategy for protecting the environment might also be useful for protecting human rights. So, try browsing to find more valuable strategies and tactics.  Just randomly browse through the database, or look at the "Editor's Choice" cases.

Please keep in mind that there are many factors that make for success or failure in a given situation, and that everything contains the seeds of its opposite. No success or failure is ever complete or permanent.


Your comments, corrections, and new success stories will directly help others around the world who are struggling with similar problems.  We want to make this project as useful as possible. We ask for the following:

  • How useful is this for you? Are there parts that are particularly useful, or parts that are difficult? Is the language ok for those of you who are not fluent in English? Any advice on making it better?
  • If you find a case that needs to be corrected or updated, please let us know by using the "Feedback, this Case" link on the case page.
  • Please send us more stories of successful efforts, using the "Feedback" button at the top of every page. Just a simple text describing the story will be enough for us to work with.(NOTE: due to spamming, the feedback button has been temporarily removed.  Use "comments on this case" instead, even for general feedback.)
  • Let us know of any strategies that you think should be added to the "selected" list.


For several years, the database has operated on a shoestring - but now the shoestring is in danger of wearing out. The main cost is website maintenance and processing new case histories. There is now a large backlog of success stories that are waiting to be processed. The cost is not great, but is more than we have. To keep dbsst.org up to date and working well, we need about $3,000, and we have to reluctantly ask for support from you.

So, if you are using this site and find it valuable, please consider making a donation. We promise your funds will be put to very good use. Use the donation button below, or send a check to:

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If you have questions, please contact Arden Buck, creator of dbsst.org


The Mountain Forum for Peace
PO Box 1233, Nederland CO 80466
  1051: Texas Twosome Takes on Polluters

"Summary: Sylvia Herrera and Susana Almanza founded the organization PODER (People Organized in Defense of Earth and her Resources) in 1991 in East Austin, Texas. They were successful in ‘booting’ polluting industries from the area, and in changing zoning laws to prevent future pollution.... 

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  824: Letter-writing Prevents Human Rights Abuses

"Amnesty International is a worldwide letter-writing organization that works to promote all the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international standards. In particular, Amnesty International campaigns to free all prisoners of conscience; ensure fair and prompt trials for political prisoners; abolish the death penalty, torture and other cruel treatment of ... 

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  1001: Long Term Conflict Resolution in Africa

"The Center for Conflict Resolution (CCR) in Cape Town attempts to solve conflicts with long-term programs. Its trainers work systematically with schools and teachers as well as with police, prisoners, and prison guards. Its mediators advise high-ranking officers, including defense and foreign ministers, in Malawi, Burundi, Somalia, Zimbabwe, and Sudan. But still, one of their most difficult hurdles... 

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  574: Indonesian Women Promote Mangrove Rehabilitation and Conservation

"In Indonesia, A Global Greengrants grant was given to increase women's roles in natural resource management and promote mangrove forest rehabilitation and conservation in Indonesia. Persatuan Perempuan Sama cooperates with rural women's groups in areas with degraded mangrove forests, and has completed a mangrove management/fishpond demonstration project. Recommended by the Earth Island Institute (F... 

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  659: Dalits (Hindu Untouchables) Use Traditional Music to Subvert The Caste System

"Dalits (Untouchables in the Hindu caste system) in India are using traditional music to subvert the caste system. Born into marginal existences, they increasingly assert their human rights. They are by far the largest group amongst the fifth of India's population who live in extreme poverty and destitution. Condemned to laboring in the fields of high-caste families in return for a subsistence diet... 

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