Steps to Financial Freedom

first_imgContribution by Molly Herndon and Carolyn BirdDigging out of a mountain of debt can seem like an impossible task, and many resist asking for help. Service members may feel anxious about their options or be unaware of the wide range of services provided to them on base and, increasingly, online. As a PFM you may ask yourself– how do I help a service member find the motivation to stick with a financial management plan? Over the next few weeks, we will be going back to the basics by outlining steps and strategies you can use to help your clients who are looking for financial guidance to get on track.Step 1: Assess the SituationThe first step is to assist the service member in getting the finances under control by assessing the current financial situation. The service member, and you, must know what you’re up against before you can create a plan to get out of the cycle of debt using a net worth calculator.Depending on the specific circumstance, you may recommend your client consider consumer credit counseling, debt consolidation, refinancing or transferring balances to get a handle on existing debt. Each of these strategies comes with advantages and disadvantages. It is important that the client be aware of and ask the lender for an explanation of any increase in the number of payments and interest rates or fees. A clear explanation of costs or extended periods of indebtedness will help the client to evaluate whether the plan is in their best financial interest. Credit repair agencies often promise to remove negative credit information for a fee. Be sure your clients know that the only legal method of improving a credit score is through a history of on-time payments or the removal of false negative information. Steering clients away from credit repair agencies is good practice, saving your clients valuable time and hard earned money.These initial meetings may be a good time to suggest creating a monthly budget tracker. Tracking every penny that comes in and goes out is the only effective measure toward changing spending habits. Providing clients with an easy-to-use worksheet may help clients get started with this new habit.Step 2: Find the MotivationWhat’s really important is what happens after the service member leaves your office. One way to motivate might be to show just how much the debt truly costs. Using the credit card calculator on, I experimented with a balance of $3,000 at an interest rate of 18 percent and payments of $75 a month. Guess what? This debt costs $509 a year! Before you run the calculator, ask the service member about favorite hobbies or something he or she would like to buy. Run numbers on the calculator and show the service member just how much the debt at minimum payments is costing them each year. Ask if they wouldn’t rather use that $509 toward that hobby or purchase.Step 3: Recruit Your Team!While PFMs are part of the service member’s team for financial fitness, the most important team member is the service member’s spouse. Discuss with the service member how he will discuss this with his spouse to get her motivated too. Ask about the spouse’s favorite things and help the service member devise an approach that rewards both of them for working together toward a financial goal.These are just the initial steps in working toward financial freedom. Later we will discuss saving, investing, and raising financially fit kids. There are many approaches to debt solution. What strategies have you found works well in helping service members turn their financial situations around?last_img read more

Hashimpura, where justice was served after 31 years

first_img However, five survived the shooting, pretending to be dead and swam through the waterbodies. The case was built on their testimonies, as they recounted the experience.How did it come about?The incident rocked the faith of the minority community in the State police, and the protracted criminal justice process and the apathy of the political class added to the anxiety. The CB-CID, which was handed over the probe, filed a chargesheet in the criminal court in Ghaziabad in 1996. And over 20 warrants issued by the court over the next three years failed to produce an outcome, the High Court noted in its order.The trial of the cases was later transferred to Delhi on the orders of the Supreme Court after the victims’ families said they were not satisfied with the progress of the investigation.Following this, charges were framed against the accused (19 originally, but three died during trial) by the trial court in May, 2006 for murder, criminal conspiracy, kidnapping, disappearance of evidence and rioting, among others. It was only in May 2014 that the statements of the accused were recorded.Why did it take so long?However, in 2015, all 16 PAC men were acquitted by the trial court, which noted that the evidence required to connect the accused to the killing was missing. The verdict was challenged by the victims and their families, and the National Human Rights Commission was allowed by the court to intervene, seeking further probe. The High Court then allowed additional evidence to be recorded. And on October 31, 2018, more than 31 years after the crime, the High Court overturned the 2015 verdict of the trial court.What does it mean for families?The High Court dubbed the Hashimpura incident as a custodial killing and said it was “targeted killings of persons belonging to one minority community.” It has been a long and hard fight for the survivors, battling not just their personal loss and trauma but also the systemic failures and obstacles of the justice system. The prolonged legal battle may have diluted justice, but the conviction of the accused policemen, after three decades, is a landmark, because custodial killings are rarely punished in the country.What next?The High Court’s order is likely to be challenged in the Supreme Court. This means the accused may still have a chance to escape or may be too old to serve the sentence. The victims could have another round of legal battle. Moreover, only subordinate personnel of the PAC were punished while none of their superiors were touched, raising questions of impunity and accountability beyond this case. On October 31, the Delhi High Court sentenced 16 former personnel of the Uttar Pradesh Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) to life imprisonment for abducting and shooting dead 38 persons, all Muslims, at Hashimpura in Meerut in 1987. For victims and survivors, it was some consolation after 31 years.What happened?On May 22, 1987, the western Uttar Pradesh city of Meerut was engulfed in communal violence over the Babri Masjid dispute in Ayodhya. The PAC and the Army launched a search operation at Hashimpura, after two rifles belonging to the PAC personnel were allegedly looted by “anti-social” elements and a relative of a Major was killed near the area.The PAC rounded up 42-45 men, young and old, and packed them into a yellow-coloured truck belonging to the C-Company of the 41st Battalion and drove them away. But instead of taking them to the police station, they were taken to a canal near Ghaziabad. The PAC personnel then shot dead the men with their .303 rifles and dumped some of the bodies into the Gang Nahar (canal) and the rest into Hindon river. Thirty-eight perished. Most bodies were never found. Only 11 bodies were identified by their relatives.last_img read more

Podcast: Frozen Plastic, Big Brains, and Rewiring the Male Brain

first_imgWhere does all of our plastic waste end up? What sacrifices did we make for our large brains? And does parenting rewire the male brain? Science’s Online News Editor David Grimm chats about these stories and more with Science’s Sarah Crespi.last_img

What Makes Gurkhas The Toughest Soldiers In The World

first_imgThe Gurkha warriors of Nepal have been in the international spotlight recently, after it was announced that they will provide security during this month’s summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore.Read it at The Week Related Itemslast_img

Showers bring relief from water woes to Pune residents

first_imgHeavy and incessant showers in the catchment areas in Pune district over the past 72 hours have filled up the Khadakwasla dam — the city’s potable water lifeline — to full capacity, prompting a massive discharge of water into the Mutha river by the irrigation department.The other three dams supplying water to the district — Panshet, Varasgaon and Temghar — too are filling up rapidly, helping reduce the city’s water woes.Authorities said that while Khadkwasla had filled up to its capacity of 1.97 tmc (thousand million cubic feet), the four dams had recorded a collective storage of of 11.5 tmc, which is 40% of the cumulative storage capacity.“We have opened five sluice gates of the Khadakwasla dam and have discharged 3,500 cusecs of water into the Mutha river till Thursday. The continuous rainfall led us to begin the process of discharge from Wednesday itself. If the rain continues like this, all four dams will soon fill up to their cumulative capacity of 29.15 tmc,” said Pandurang Shelar, Executive Engineer, Khadakwasla Irrigation Division.Mr. Shelar further said that the present storage capacity in Khadakwasla was enough to fulfil the city’s needs for the next eight months.The irrigation department had alerted the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) before the discharge so that the civic body could take requisite safety measures for those living along the river front and for commuters using the roads and bridges over the Mutha for travelling.While the Khadakwasla dam is 100 % full, the Panshet dam has filled up to 45% of its capacity while the Varasgaon and Temghar dams are filled to 32% and 17% of their total capacities respectively.Soaring mercury levels in the summer months had seen reserve water stocks plummeting in these four dams, causing it to fall below 3.25 tmc of their cumulative stock. The water crisis had led to more than 1,000 tankers servicing the Pune and Nashik divisions throughout the summer months and in June with the water crisis prolonged by the delay in monsoon.last_img read more

Despite Flying V’s failed bid, Teng grateful for run with Thunder

first_imgTrending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:00PH military destroys thousands of illegal guns, ammo01:00Duterte to fly to Japan for Emperor Naruhito’s enthronement02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Jeron Teng. PBA IMAGESIt may have been a tough pill to swallow, but Jeron Teng acknowledged Centro Escolar University came out the better team against Flying V in their semifinals series.“I think they hit big shots in the late game. We also had open shots, but we just didn’t make it. It happens,” he said after the Thunder’s stunning exit in the 2017 PBA D-League Foundation Cup with a 72-67 Game 3 defeat to the Scorpions on Thursday.ADVERTISEMENT But more than the numbers, what the 23-year-old cherishes the most were the learnings he had from coach Eric Altamirano.“I’ve really learned a lot from this Flying V team. I’m very thankful for the management, to our bosses, and to coach Eric — especially coach Eric because I learned a lot from his system. He really helped me a lot to be prepared for the PBA,” he said.As he braces for bigger challenges ahead, Teng shared that he’s taking this time to hone his craft as he raises the possibility of making the leap and joining the 2017 PBA Rookie Draft.“The time I have right now, I’ll work with my individual skills. I consistently work on my outside shooting and continue improving my basic skills. I need to do that so that I’ll be more prepared when I come to the PBA,” he said.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. center_img MOST READ Teng, the leading contender for the Conference MVP award, rued what could have been a dream run for Flying V as it already reached great heights after being only the fourth team to sweep the eliminations.“It’s unfortunate. We knew we could’ve achieved more. But we just don’t know what happened. But that’s basketball and those things happen and we just have to learn from it,” he said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingThe failed championship campaign, though, does not diminish what Teng has achieved with the Thunder.Averaging a league-best 22.15 points, 6.85 rebounds, and 5.77 assists, Teng had a blast in one conference stay with Flying, recording the most triple-doubles in league history with three. JRU gets first streak, clobbers St. Benilde by 28 Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR View commentslast_img read more

Premier League: Fernando Llorente retuns to haunt old club as Tottenham Hotspur win at Swansea

first_imgTottenham Hotspur handed Fernando Llorente a rare start in place of Harry Kane, and the former Swansea man returned to Liberty stadium and scored against his old club on Tuesday.Llorente headed Spurs in front after 12 minutes, although he was clearly offside when meeting Christian Eriksen’s free kick. In incessant driving rain at the Liberty Stadium, Spurs looked largely in control until after the break when Jordan Ayew went close and Jan Vertonghen inadvertently deflected a Swansea attack against his own post.WATCH VIDEOYet Kane, brought on for the final 20 minutes, calmed nerves as he superbly set up an 89th-minute goal for Dele Alli that sealed the victory which lifted Spurs to fifth in the table, above their local rivals Arsenal.A dramatic late win at Watford had given Swansea’s new manager Carlos Carvalhal the ideal launch pad for a revival but the Portuguese’s first home match in charge illustrated the magnitude of the task facing him.”You need luck to score and win, yes, but after 90 minutes I think it’s clear we were better and deserved the points,” Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino told the BBC.”The first half was so difficult to play football. The weather was horrible, but we dominated and tried to play football.”Even the absence of Kane, not risked from the start with Spurs due to play 48 hours later against West Ham United, did not stop the early one-way traffic in the pouring rain which left surface water on the pitch.It did, however, mean the Spurs’ marksman, who was brought on midway through the second half, missed out on the chance of a third successive league hat-trick, a feat not achieved in English football for 72 years.advertisementInstead, it was Spanish international Llorente who ghosted ahead of his marker and latched on to Eriksen’s superb whipped free kick from the left flank to head home past Lukasz Fabianski.The decision to award the goal clearly exasperated Carvalhal, who was right in thinking Llorente was offside but there could be no argument about the quality of the assist from Eriksen.It meant the Dane has now been involved in either scoring or setting up 11 goals in eight league matches against Swansea.Yet after dominating the first half against the side with the worst defensive record in the league, Spurs made heavy weather of the win, a resurgent Swansea coming closest when Mike van der Hoorn’s header deflected off Vertonghen’s back and struck the woodwork.Spurs, though, reasserted their superiority when Kane came on, the goalscorer par excellence turning provider as his marvellous through ball on the counter-attack found Alli, who bundled the ball home at the second attempt.(With inputs from Reuters)last_img read more

PAOK Fires Head Coach Tudor; Ivic Takes Over

first_imgCroatian coach Igor Tudor was fired from PAOK Thessaloniki on Wednesday after a string of disappointing games by the popular northern Greece club.Former Greek football league midfielder and Serbian national Vladan Ivic was named as the temporary head coach.In a tersely worded announcement, the team’s management cited the 38-year-old Tudor’s “insulting” comments about PAOK’s quality of roster as one of the reasons behind the firing, along with the recent unsuccessful results.PAOK is currently fourth in the Greek Superleague, with 38 points, 29 points behind league-leader Olympiacos Piraeus.TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Ben Stokes ice-cool to seal England one-day series win over Pakistan

first_imgWhile his late dismissal of Shoaib Malik was bizarre – the veteran hit his own stumps attempting a late cut on 41– the removal of Mohammad Hafeez for 59 in the 37th over, clouting a rasping short ball to mid-on, was pivotal.Hafeez and the elegant Babar Azam had put on 104 for the second wicket, having come together for the 21st over after Curran had removed Fakhar Zaman for 57. The pair should have gone harder, not least Babar who went 10 overs without a boundary before a tickle down leg for four brought up his ninth ODI hundred.Coming from 104 balls, it was the slowest of seven ODI centuries in Nottingham in the past four years and needed some late thrust to compensate. This was not forthcoming, however, with a Curran slower ball leading to Jofra Archer holding a catch on the sweeper boundary. England cricket team Pakistan cricket team Stokes, fresh to the crease, needed to show significant composure. Despite making 37 during Tuesday’s win at Bristol – his only innings of the series – the all-rounder had returned from the Indian Premier League down on form with both bat and ball.He needed allies too. Joe Denly came first, adding 42 for the sixth wicket but falling victim to a superb caught and bowled from Junaid Khan on 17, before Curran hustled 31 runs in a stand of 61. The No8 enjoyed a stroke of fortune on six, however, when Sarfraz Ahmed failed to appeal for a run out, under the belief the stumps had already been broken by an initial direct hit. In fact, one bail remained and Curran, just short of his ground, should have gone under the laws.With this pair’s support, Stokes compiled an unbeaten 71 from 64 balls – one of five fours and three sixes – steering England over the line for a three-wicket win with three balls remaining and Adil Rashid for company.Jos Buttler, captaining the side to a 3-0 scoreline while Eoin Morgan served a one-match ban, said: “It was good to get there in the final overs. We were under pressure but Ben and Tom, that was a great partnership.”On Curran, whose supporting role with the bat followed figures of four for 71, he added: “Every time something’s asked of him he comes up with the goods.”Curran certainly came up with the goods in the first innings, repeatedly puncturing holes in the Pakistan batting lineup – including twice at the end – to push his case for Tuesday’s final World Cup squad. The identity of the fall guy is scarcely any clearer either, given Mark Wood also impressed with two strikes in his first outing since the Caribbean tour.This related chiefly to Wood’s speeds, which topped 90mph three times in his first over and then sent Imam-ul-Haq off to hospital in his second when a lifter crashed into the opener’s elbow. How female cricket coaches are blocked by the league of gentlemen Stokes was subdued with the ball while Rashid and Moeen Ali took some punishment (even if the latter was denied the wicket of his tormentor, Hafeez, when Buttler fluffed a stumping chance).Denly was surprisingly the thriftiest on show, coming on in the opening power play and sending down five overs for 27.Roy’s eighth one-day hundred looked to have broken the back of the chase. As well as scorching to three figures in 75 balls – bringing up his hundred with an astonishing backfoot punch for six over extra cover – he put on a 94-run opening stand with James Vince (in for the rested Jonny Bairstow) and 107 with Joe Root.His eventual demise came when gloving down the leg side off the slippery Mohammad Hasnain and sparked England’s collapse. Root, already handed a life on 33, edged to short third man off Imad Wasim before the left-arm spinner had Buttler caught at short fine-leg for a second-ball duck when attempting a sweep.When Moeen spooned a catch to mid-wicket trying to flay Shoaib to the rope third ball, England were suddenly 216 for five in the 31st over and in desperate need of a cooler head. Thankfully Stokes, not always known for this, delivered. A nerve-shredding night in Nottingham ended with England victorious over Pakistan, sealing this pre-World Cup series with a match to spare thanks to a brutal century from Jason Roy and the ice-cool finishing of Ben Stokes.Having restricted the tourists to 340 for six following four wickets for Tom Curran, England once again appeared to be cruising to their target with minimal fuss on what was yet another belting pitch at Trent Bridge.Roy struck 114 from 89 balls, piling on 201 runs for the first two wickets as Pakistan’s fielding came apart at the seams. But when his departure in the 28th over triggered a collapse of four wickets in 22 balls, the fourth ODI suddenly turned into a dog fight. Topics Support The Guardian Hampshire’s bowlers blow up a storm but rain confounds leaders Somerset Share on Pinterest Facebook Read more Share on Facebook It is Archer’s emergence that has created England’s selectorial bottleneck. On a relatively quiet day for the newcomer he nevertheless combined with Wood for an average speed of 88mph in their initial eight overs – England’s fastest opening spell since the advent of speed guns – and removed the dangerous Asif Ali for 17. Reuse this contentcenter_img Share on Twitter The Spin: sign up and get our weekly cricket email. Share via Email Share on Messenger Cricket Since you’re here… Imam-ul-Haq leaves the field injured before later returning. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images Read more Pinterest match reports … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. 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Cape Breton Regional Municipality Benefits From Nova Scotia

first_imgPREMIER’S OFFICE/TREASURY/POLICY BOARD–Cape Breton RegionalMunicipality Benefits From Nova Scotia Department of Health: $280.6 million Community Services: $122.2 million Department of Education: $107.26 million Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations: $30.3 million Sysco demolition, cleanup and employee pensions: $28.8 million Transportation and Public Works: $24.3 million The Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM) has 170 millionreasons to support its current relationship with the Governmentof Nova Scotia. Energy Minister Cecil Clarke, on behalf of Premier John Hamm andTreasury and Policy Board chair Michael Baker, released today,March 19, the first comprehensive expenditure overview ofprovincial activities in the CBRM. The analysis showed that forfiscal year 2002-03, the most recent year available, the NovaScotia government contributed $170 million more in the CBRM thanit collected in revenue. “For the last three years, Nova Scotia’s growth strategy hasrecognized the very specific economic challenges andopportunities facing the communities in CBRM,” said Mr. Clarke. “That’s why, as a provincial government, we continue to live upto and exceed our financial obligations to the people of CBRMduring a period of major economic transition.” Based on data from CBRM’s own governance study, the municipalitygenerates $688 million in revenues to the provincial government. The cross-government overview of expenditures directly attributedto CBRM shows total provincial spending at $858 million. The top six departments and agencies in spending are:center_img Mr. Clarke also noted that, of the $20.8 million spent by NovaScotia Economic Development in fiscal year 2002-03, $6.3 millionwas invested towards projects and activities in the CBRM. “With about 12 per cent of the population, CBRM received 30 percent of the investments made by Nova Scotia EconomicDevelopment,” said Mr. Clarke. “That’s the level of support thisgovernment has for creating the climate for jobs and growth inthe CBRM.” Mr. Clarke said that recent declarations by CBRM Mayor JohnMorgan about an economic crisis in the municipality due to a lackof support from the federal and provincial governments are notreflected in fact. He added the provincial analysis likelyunderstates direct provincial spending in CBRM, because it didnot include such direct costs as long service award payments andmedical insurance premium payments to retired civil servants andteachers made annually. “The problems in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality areclearly not due to a lack of provincial dollars,” said Mr.Clarke. “The problems in the CBRM can only be overcome throughstrong leadership, with all governments working together, inconcert with the private sector, to transform our regionaleconomy into the powerful force we know it can be. I encouragethe mayor and council to accept Premier John Hamm’s invitation towork with me, and our partners in the federal government, to makelasting, positive improvements for our citizens.”last_img read more

Second Storm May Bring Flooding Storm Surge

first_img For more information on preparing for a flood, visit . Listen to the radio. Local authorities will issue instructions for those living in the affected areas. Know how to turn off water, gas and electricity in case you are instructed to by local officials. If the main power box is not in a dry, safe area, do not try to turn off electricity. Contact Nova Scotia Power at 428-6004 or 1-877-428-6004 for instructions. Ensure storm drains and gutters are free of debris. Have drinking water on hand in case the regular supply is unavailable or becomes contaminated. In flooded areas, do not use well water for drinking, cooking or bathing until the water has been tested and it has been deemed safe to use. Questions about safe drinking water can be directed to local environment offices at 1-877-936-8476 during regular business hours. For urgent environmental matters after hours call 1-800-565-1633. A second weather system tracking towards Nova Scotia is expected to bring more high winds, heavy rain and high water levels overnight tonight, Feb. 28. The Emergency Management Office (EMO) advises Nova Scotians to continue to be prepared for localized and coastal flooding. As with any storm that produces significant wind gusts, power outages are also possible. According to Environment Canada, the storm will move toward the province this afternoon. An additional 60 millimetres of rain are expected over southwestern Nova Scotia overnight. Winds of up to 110 kilometres per hour can also be expected along the coast, with a storm surge of up to 75 centimetres during high tide Monday morning. “Please continue to pay careful attention to weather forecasts and be ready for the possibility of flooding as this second storm heads our way,” said Ramona Jennex, Minister for Emergency Management. “Continue to be very careful in coastal areas.” The Emergency Management Office is working with partners to monitor and prepare for the weather system. EMO advises residents who live in areas prone to flooding to take appropriate precautions such as moving furniture and personal property away from possible flood water, and securing property that might be swept away or damaged by high winds or floods. During storm surge, maintain a safe distance from the coast. Getting caught too close to the shoreline during a storm surge could be life-threatening. In the event of a flood:last_img read more

Bob Barker Funds Elephants Trip To Sanctuary

first_imgOn October 20, 2013, three African elephants from the Toronto Zoo in Ontario, Canada, arrived safely at the Performing Animal Welfare Society’s (PAWS) ARK 2000 sanctuary in San Andreas, California.Their trip was funded by Award-winning television host, Bob Barker, who ardently advocated for the move, while PAWS assumes the financial responsibility for the lifelong care of the elephants. The elephants Toka, age 43, Thika, age 33, and Iringa, age 44, will eventually share an 80-acre natural habitat with the sanctuary’s three resident African elephants, Mara, Maggie and Lulu.“We are very happy that Toka, Thika and Iringa are finally here,” said PAWS’ president and co-founder, Ed Stewart. “PAWS looks forward to seeing these elephants make the transition from living in a zoo for most, if not all, of their lives, to exploring their expansive new home and meeting our resident African elephants. The elephants will receive excellent care from a dedicated staff, as they settle into their new lives at our sanctuary.”“This move has been a long time coming, but what matters is that the elephants are here,” said Bob Barker, who was there to welcome the elephants, along with United Activists for Animal Rights president Nancy Burnet. “I am so excited for Toka, Iringa and Thika. The PAWS sanctuary is a place where elephants can just be elephants. It truly is a paradise for these magnificent animals.”“After their cross-country journey, our first priority is getting them settled in and comfortable in their new home,” said Dr. Jackie Gai, DVM, PAWS’ veterinarian. “I’m looking forward to getting to know Iringa, Toka, and Thika, and we are committed to providing them with the best care possible.”“PAWS thanks all of the people who made the road trip with Iringa, Thika and Toka,” said Stewart. “You couldn’t find a better or more qualified crew.” California-based Active Environments coordinated the move, under the direction of Margaret Whittaker. Accompanying the elephants on their trip to ARK 2000 were Dr. Joel Parrott, DVM, Executive Director, Oakland Zoo; Pat Lampi, Executive Director, Alaska Zoo; Dr. Angela Goodnight, DVM, Associate Veterinarian, Oakland Zoo; Jeff Kinzley, Elephant Manager, Oakland Zoo; Scott Blais, International Elephant Consultant, Co-founder, The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee.The Toronto Zoo board voted in May 2011 to end the zoo’s elephant program and send the elephants to another facility. The decision was based on a recommendation made in a March 2011 report that cited the high cost of building a new elephant facility, among other issues. In October 2011, the Toronto City Council voted 31-4 to move the elephants to PAWS.PAWS now cares for 11 elephants at its 2,300-acre, natural habitat sanctuary that features grassy, rolling hills and fresh vegetation for natural foraging. The elephants include three female Asian elephants (Annie, Wanda and Gypsy), two male Asian elephants (Prince and Nicholas), and the six African elephants. The elephants have been relocated from circuses and zoos, including the Alaska Zoo, and Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) accredited zoos such as the Detroit Zoo, the Los Angeles Zoo, the San Francisco Zoo, and the Milwaukee Zoo.The move comes amid a larger debate about the suitability of keeping elephants in captivity, and on the heels of documentaries such as HBO’s “An Apology To Elephants” (for which Lily Tomlin won an Emmy) and The Fifth Estate’s “The Elephant in the Room,” and The Seattle Times’ 2012 report on elephants in zoos, “Glamour Beasts: The Dark Side of Elephant Captivity.”To date, 25 zoos have closed, or will be closing, their elephant exhibits, for reasons ranging from lack of funding for exhibit expansions to welfare concerns such as inadequate space, unsuitably cold climates, and insufficient social groups. Other zoos are enlarging older exhibits to provide more space for their elephants.For more information about PAWS, please visit in 1984, PAWS operates three sanctuaries for captive wildlife. Located in the cities of Galt, Herald and San Andreas, California, these sanctuaries are home to more than 100 rescued and retired animals, including 11 elephants, African lions, bears, tigers and other exotic animals.Source:BusinessWire.comlast_img read more

Next five nonpermanent members of Security Council chosen

15 October 2009Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Gabon, Lebanon and Nigeria will serve two-year terms on the Security Council starting next January after they won elections to the 15-member body today. The five countries were chosen after running uncontested races for the non-permanent seats, and they were duly elected by the General Assembly during a secret ballot at United Nations Headquarters in New York this morning.To be elected to the Security Council, candidate countries need a two-thirds majority of ballots of Member States that are present and voting. The seats are allocated on the basis of geographical groupings.Nigeria, which received 186 votes today for one of two African seats available, has served three times previously on the Council, in 1966-67, 1978-79 and 1994-95. Gabon, which picked up 184 votes, served in 1978-79 and in 1998-99.Lebanon, which was chosen after receiving 180 votes, is returning to the Council after a break of more than half a century. Its only other stint was in 1953-54.Bosnia and Herzegovina, which won the seat allocated for Eastern European States after receiving 183 votes, has never served before on the Council.Brazil was chosen for the Latin American and Caribbean category after being awarded 182 votes. It has served on the Council on nine other occasions: 1946-47, 1951-52, 1954-55, 1963-64, 1967-68, 1988-89, 1993-94, 1998-99 and 2004-05.The five countries will join Austria, Japan, Mexico, Turkey and Uganda, whose terms on the Council end on 31 December 2010. The five permanent members are China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States. read more

UN health body issues firstever guidelines on procuring safe malaria medicines

The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) today issued new guidelines for malaria treatment, marking the first time the agency has released guidance on procuring safe and effective medicines to treat the disease.The agency warned that if not used properly, artemisinin-based combination therapy, known as ACTs, which have transformed treatment in recent years, could become ineffective.“The world now has the means to rapidly diagnose malaria and treat it effectively,” said Robert Newman, Director of WHO’s Global Malaria Programme (GMP).Half of the world’s population is at risk of contracting malaria. Every year, there are 250 million new cases, resulting in 860,000 deaths, the overwhelming majority of which are among African children.In Africa, it also affects over 50 million pregnant women and is responsible for 10 per cent of all maternal mortalities every year.The second edition of the Guidelines for the Treatment of Malaria provides evidence-based recommendations for countries on both diagnosis and treatment.The main changes in this edition from its first, which was published in 2006, are the emphasis on testing before treatment and the addition of a new ACT to the list of recommended treatments.“WHO now recommends diagnostic testing in all cases of suspected malaria,” Dr. Newman said. “Treatment based on clinical symptoms alone should be reserved for settings where diagnostic tests are not available.”In 2008, less than 25 per cent of suspected malaria cases were tested in 18 of the 35 African countries which reported results. Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDTs), which use a dip stick and a drop of blood, have recently been developed, which can replace microscopy. These new tests can reliably find the malaria parasites in the blood and can be carried out at all levels of the health system, including in community settings.WHO said that moving towards universal diagnostic testing of malaria is a critical step forward in the fight against the disease since it will allow for the targeted use of ACTs by those who actually have malaria.The aim, the agency said, is to reduce the emergency and spread of drug resistance, with better management of malaria helping to tackle other problems, like childhood illness and child survival.The new guidelines are also the first time they have included a 16-step checklist on the selection and procurement of ACTs.“Pharmaceutical markets in malaria-endemic countries are often unregulated and national authorities need practical help to assess the quality of malaria medicines before they buy them,” said Andrea Bosman, Coordinator of the Medicines and Diganostics Unit at WHO’s GMP, warning that there are too many medicines of varying quality on the market.Low-quality medicines impact the health and lives of patients, damage health services’ credibility and can boost resistance to treatment, WHO cautioned.“These guidelines will help countries select and procure effective medicines of good quality and save lives by improving the way patients are diagnosed and treated,” said George Ki-Zerbo, Malaria Programme Manager at the WHO Regional Office for Africa, located in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo (ROC).Last month, dozens of African leaders met in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, to address the challenges facing the continent in the effort to meet the UN target of ensuring universal access to malaria control measures by the end of this year.More than two dozen heads of State convened the first working session of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) during the annual African Union (AU) summit.ALMA was launched during the General Assembly in September to provide a forum to ensure efficient procurement, distribution, and utilization of malaria control interventions; facilitate the sharing of effective malaria control practices; and ensure malaria remains high on the global political agenda.As much as 40 per cent of health-care spending in endemic countries goes to malaria, costing the continent around $12 billion a year, according ALMA.The 26-nation ALMA coalition said that in the past 12 months alone at least 90 million long-lasting, insecticidal mosquito nets were delivered in Africa, and overall 200 million such nets have been distributed to 400 million people in sub-Saharan Africa, where virtually all malaria deaths occur.“The world is closer than ever before to ending malaria deaths,” said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Envoy for Malaria Ray Chambers, with the WHO’s 2009 World Malaria Report indicating that more than one-third of malaria-affected countries have documented reductions in cases of more than 50 per cent. 9 March 2010The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) today issued new guidelines for malaria treatment, marking the first time the agency has released guidance on procuring safe and effective medicines to treat the disease. read more

Veteran relief official named head of UN agency for Palestinian refugees

A veteran United Nations relief official was today named head of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the body that has been the main source of support for Palestinian refugees for the past 55 years.Karen AbuZayd, a United States national who was already UNRWA’s Deputy Commissioner-General for the past five years and Acting Commissioner-General since Peter Hansen of Denmark relinquished the post in March, worked for 19 years for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) before joining the agency.In a statement issued by his spokesman, Secretary-General Kofi Annan voiced his delight that Ms. AbuZayd has agreed to serve a full three-year term as Commissioner-General. “The Secretary-General believes that under her leadership UNRWA will carry out its mandate and fully live up to its responsibilities, during a period which, we all hope, will see decisive progress towards lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians, based on United Nations resolutions and a negotiated settlement of all outstanding issues, including the refugee problem,” the statement added.From her base in Gaza Ms. AbuZayd has helped oversee the education, health, social services and micro-enterprise programmes for 4.1 million Palestinian refugees.During her time at UNHCR she first worked in Sudan in 1981, dealing with Ugandan, Chadian and Ethiopian refugees fleeing from war and famine in their own countries. In 1989 she moved to Namibia to help coordinate the return of apartheid-era refugees. A year later the Liberian civil war erupted and she moved to neighbouring Sierra Leone, and helped settle 100,000 Liberians in 600 villages along the joint border.From 1991-93 she directed the South African repatriation and Kenya-Somali border operations from UNHCR headquarters in Geneva before serving as chief of mission in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, where 4 million people displaced or otherwise affected by the war there were kept alive by the agency’s airlift and convoy activities.In her final four years at UNHCR she was chef de cabinet to High Commissioner Sadako Ogata. read more

UN rights chief urges Israel to reconsider bill that would displace thousands

“As citizens of Israel, the Arab Bedouins are entitled to the same rights to property, housing and public services as any other group in Israel,” said High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. “The Government must recognize and respect the specific rights of its Bedouin communities, including recognition of Bedouin land ownership claims.” The first reading of the proposed bill, known as the Prawer-Begin Bill, passed by a narrow margin in the Knesset on 24 June, and is expected to go through the second and third readings before the end of July, according to a news release issued by the High Commissioner’s office (OHCHR).Ms. Pillay said she was “alarmed” that the bill seeks to legitimize the forced displacement and dispossession of indigenous Bedouin communities in the Negev desert in southern Israel, without recognizing that they traditionally owned land titles in the region.Instead, the bill offers Bedouins limited compensation on the condition that they move to one of the seven officially recognized urban Bedouin townships the Government has created.“If this bill becomes law, it will accelerate the demolition of entire Bedouin communities, forcing them to give up their homes, denying them their rights to land ownership, and decimating their traditional cultural and social life in the name of development,” Ms. Pillay said. The High Commissioner also pointed out that the 2008 Goldberg Commission set up by the Israeli Government recognized that the Negev Bedouins must be viewed as equal citizens with historic ties to the land, and that they were legitimate residents of the Negev.“Respect for the legitimate rights of minorities is a fundamental tenet of democracy,” she said, adding that it was regrettable that the Government continues to actively pursue a discriminatory policy against its own Arab citizens.Ms. Pillay added that a reconsideration of the bill must involve a genuinely consultative and participatory process that involves all representatives of Bedouin communities in the Negev. read more

UN partners with Rugby World Cup to tackle hunger provide meals to

According to a WFP statement, the focus of the drive in the run-up to the world’s third-largest sporting event, which kicks off on September 18, 2015 will be a “Million Meal Challenge”. The goal is to raise funds for WFP to provide meals to school children in developing countries.“There is a powerful connection between good nutrition and sporting excellence and as the world’s largest humanitarian organisation, WFP is instrumental in ensuring that young children get the food they need to reach their full physical and intellectual potential,” said WFP Executive Director, Ertharin Cousin in a statement.The Rugby World Cup Tackle Hunger partnership has been hugely successful in raising awareness and support of WFP’s work feeding the world’s hungry. And with England 2015 set to be the biggest Rugby World Cup to date, fans are digging deep to support the Million Meal Challenge.“From the armchair to the stadia, we are calling on fans to join us in supporting the Million Meal Challenge to help nourish the bodies and minds of those who face a daily challenge of malnutrition and starvation,” said IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset.More than $21,000 has already been raised by voluntary online donations through the English Rugby Community ticket sales phase, and with global public ticket sales set to launch on September 12, the Rugby family is set to get behind the campaign.Rugby World Cup 2015 is set to be a global celebration of Rugby and its character-building values with more than 2.3 million fans expected to attend the 48-match, six-week showcase. As at every Rugby World Cup since 2003, the Tackle Hunger partnership will feature prominently throughout the tournament across all media.Now in its eleventh year, the Tackle Hunger partnership between WFP and the IRB was launched at Rugby World Cup 2003 in Australia and featured at France 2007 and New Zealand 2011 as well as Rugby World Cup Sevens, Women’s Rugby World Cup and the IRB Junior World Championship. Shortly after the 2004 Asian Tsunami, the IRB organised an exhibition match in London between players from northern and southern hemisphere teams that raised more than $3 million for WFP. read more

Moving to university has devastating effect on childhood social circles according to

first_imgMoving away to university will see you lose friends at a rate of 40% every 6 months, Oxford University says Prof Dunbar also said that having too many friends could make women more stressed and even impact fertility. However, having five close female friends could cancel out the effect. “The stresses you incur destabilise the menstrual system endocrinology and very quickly lead to infertility,” he said. “Women’s infertility is heavily driven by social stresses.”It’s the number of people bumping into you. It’s the commuter problem – they’re not attacking you in the underground, they’re just crowding you. It’s social stresses“There is a suggestion that your core friends – the shoulder to cry on friends – can bolster your fertility.“A core of five best friends are crucial in buffering you against the stress of other people.“If you do not have these friends, you are more likely to have your menstrual cycle and endocrinology disrupted.”Prof Dunbar was speaking at the AAAS annual meeting in Boston.  Moving away to university will see you lose friends at a rate of 40 per cent every six monthsCredit:Julian Simmonds Evolutionary psychologist Professor Robin Dunbar said: “These were a bunch of secondary school kids. They all went off to university. Couldn’t go back see friends at weekend as used to. We followed them through their first year.  “We looked at what happened to the original set of friendships – they deteriorate really rapidly over a matter of months. The churn was phenomenal. Forty per turnover every six months.”What determined with original friendships whether they survived with girls was whether they made effort to talk more to each other on the phone. “The telephone was only of any use to the girls though. Talking had absolutely no effect on boys’ relationships at all. What held up their friendships was doing stuff together. Going to a football match, going to the pub for a drink, playing five a side. They had to make the effort.”Prof Dunbar said there was a “very striking sex difference” between men and women’s social groups. “Women clearly have much more intense close friendships,” he said. “They’re very intense, very like romantic relationships – in the sense if they break they break catastrophically. “Guys tend not to have that relationship. They tend to have a group of four guys that they do stuff with. That is much more casual.”If you move away to another town, girls will be on the phone or Facebook with each other to keep the relationship going. With guys it is out of sight out of mind. They just find four more guys to go drinking with.” The cast of university-themed sitcom Fresh Meatcenter_img The cast of Channel 4’s university-themed sitcom Fresh MeatCredit:Channel 4 Leaving home to study at university has a devastating impact on friendship groups, with students losing 40 per cent of friends every six months, Oxford University has found.Researchers discovered that original social circles rapidly deteriorated when people could not get home to see their friends at weekends.They also found that girls needed to talk regularly on the phone to keep friendships together, while men needed to meet up in person.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

The 9 at 9 Friday

first_imgYouTube: fed potapow EVERY MORNING, THEJOURNAL.IE brings you nine things you need to know with your morning cup of coffee.1. #CORRIE: British actor Michael Le Vell, best known for playing Kevin in Coronation Street, has been charged with a string of sex offences, including child rape and indecent assault.2. #MURDER: Olympian and Paralympic champion Oscar Pistorius is due in court this morning, charged with the murder of his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. Tributes have been paid to the 30-year-old who “loved everybody” and whose “future has been cut short”.3. #TALKS: As relations between senior management and rank-and-file gardaí deteriorate, Commissioner Martin Callinan is to meet with the GRA, which has plans for members to “turn off the goodwill tap” from 22 February if the government refuses to budge on pay cut proposals.4. #DOB: The Associated Newspapers group said it will consider appealing the High Court decision to award businessman Denis O’Brien €150,000 in damages in his defamation case against the Irish Daily Mail.5. #PROM NOTES: A member of the ECB’s governing council has criticised Ireland’s promissory note swap in an interview with Bloomberg, highlighting the difficulties encountered when there is no clear line between monetary and fiscal policies.6. #ABORTION: In some more bad news for the Enda Kenny, former taoiseach John Bruton has written about his concerns on the proposed abortion legislation in the Irish Times today. He wrote that to include the threat of suicide in legislation is “not consistent with the plain words of the Constitution”.7. #BURGLARY: Two men have been arrested in Kildare following a break-in at a pub near Maynooth yesterday. Gardaí say the perpetrators were wearing balaclavas and carrying crowbars when they were arrested at the scene.8. #HORSEMEAT: Fresh food has been implicated in the horsemeat scandal for the first time with Asda taking Greencore products off its shelf after one of its beef products test positive for traces of equine DNA. Greencore’s share price has dropped 19.8 per cent this morning.9. #METEORS: A meteor shower sparked panic in central Russia overnight as the hurtling space debris exploded in the air, blew out windows and left more than 250 people injured.last_img read more

Woman who developed back pain aged 18 left bed bound in agony

first_imgMcNicholas explained that no other consultant in the country will take on Elizabeth’s case as it’s so complex.“Her current consultant is the only person who can refer her for treatment abroad as the referral must come from a consultant who deals with the condition that the treatment is being sought for.“If we don’t stick with him, Elizabeth won’t have any consultant.”Elizabeth’s mother also explained that they can’t seek funding from their private health insurance provider as they don’t cover the hospital she has been referred to. “We would also have to pay up front and claim back at a later date which we just can’t afford to do”.‘Cries for the life she missed out on’Elizabeth has missed out on all her young life and been forced to put college on hold indefinitely while she watches all of her friends move on with their lives.McNicholas told this website how Elizabeth had her first operation in 2008 and started using a wheelchair intermittently, but has been in the wheelchair full-time for the past four years.However, she added that her daughter rarely uses the wheelchair now as she needs to be harnessed into it with her back brace as she can’t sit up independently.Elizabeth, who once had a bright future ahead of her, now faces a life of no hope and never-ending pain.“She has absolutely no quality of life, every minute is spent in unbearable pain. She is on a huge amount of medication but this gives her very little relief. Her condition is continuing to deteriorate.She cries for the life she missed out on. She sees no light at the end of the tunnel and at the moment, neither do I.Constant painElizabeth needs 24 hour care and is steroid dependent. Her family, including her two younger siblings Sean and Úna, help out in caring for their older sister. Úna won Dublin young carer of the year last year. Source: Mark StedmanMcNicholas said the pain Elizabeth experiences can be so intense that she needs to be left alone and can’t bear to have anybody sitting near her.She said that her daughter often spends the night curled up and crying in agony.Speaking about the operation, McNicholas said, “I would hope it would free her of some of the pain and that she could walk again.“The operation may get her back on her feet, if anything, it would stop further deterioration.At the moment it feels like she’s facing a life of no hope. She’s in constant pain and has no rest-bite.McNicolas added, “We are heart-broken at the condition she’s been left in, especially at knowing that there is something that can be done to improve her situation.”Read: ‘I see my daughter crying in pain, her body bending over. We can’t wait two years’>Read: Stories of people on hospital waiting lists are “absolutely inexcusable”, says Simon Harris> Woman who developed back pain aged 18 left bed bound in agony as HSE refuses to fund operation Her mother described how her daughter, who once had a bright future ahead of her, now faces a life of no hope and never-ending pain. Feb 11th 2017, 12:05 AM Saturday 11 Feb 2017, 12:05 AM By Cliodhna Russell “I HAVE BEEN left confined to bed with absolutely no quality of life. I can’t remember the last time I had fun or enjoyed myself.”Those are the words of 27-year-old Elizabeth McNicholas who was living a full and busy life until she started developing back pain in her Leaving Cert year.She has had numerous major spinal surgeries along with many procedures and treatments – all of which have been unsuccessful.Elizabeth has also developed a Hypothalamic Pituitary injury which has resulted in her developing narcolepsy with cataplexy and an adrenal insufficiency, which is a life threatening condition caused by the inability to produce the life-sustaining hormone cortisol, and she is also in severe neuropathic pain.She has run out of treatment options in Ireland and has been referred to the Royal National Orthopedic Hospital in London, which is a world-class centre and specialises in the treatment of her condition.Despite being referred by her consultant, the funding has been refused by the HSE. Her family has appealed the decision a number of times over the past two years but it has been repeatedly refused.‘I have been left to suffer and deteriorate’Elizabeth has been confined to her bed for the past three years and her pain, which she describes as ‘unbearable’, leaves her trembling and squirming through the days. Elizabeth with her assistance dog, Bart.She told that in the past year she has only been able to leave her house in Lucan a handful of times.For three years I have been left to suffer and deteriorate while waiting on urgent revision spinal surgery.“My life is now centered around hospital appointments and admissions, some of which could be avoided if I could just have the surgery.“Dealing with the effects of my condition and the complications I have suffered is difficult enough without having to fight for the treatment I so desperately need, all while struggling to breathe and dealing with never-ending, unbearable pain.Nobody wants to be told they need to undergo major spinal surgery but to then be made beg for that same surgery is beyond belief. There are no words to describe how desperate I am for something to be done.Elizabeth added that her mother’s days are spent making phone calls, writing letters, and trying to find a solution, all to no avail.Brenda McNicholas described to how the hospital in London is willing to do the operation but the problem is on the Irish side.“Unfortunately, Elizabeth’s consultant, the only one who can deal with her condition, no longer sits in the public sector and the HSE won’t accept referrals from consultants who sit privately.”The refusal letter McNicholas received from the HSE states:Your daughter is a private patient being referred from a private facility. Referrals from private hospital consultants are not eligible for consideration under the HSE TAS.Private patients should apply to their private health insurance provider in relation to accessing funding towards the cost of treatment abroad. 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