Mermaids dive in to Habitat’s Women Build 2017

first_img Support conservation and fish with NEW Florida specialty license plate Around TownOpinionBy Suzanne Kidd Suzanne Kidd is a former 30-year public school educator and design professional.  During her sixteen years as an Apopka resident, she has been an active participant in her homeowners’ association and Apopka civic affairs, attending City Council and Planning Commission meetings and serving on several City committees, most recently chairing the City’s Visioning Steering Committee.  She is currently involved with Habitat for Humanity in bringing affordable housing to Apopka. Please enter your name here Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.  So, you may ask, what motivated these special women, already busy with career, family, and community service, to take on yet another commitment?  Without hesitation, they enthusiastically embraced Habitat’s mission:  the belief that everyone deserves a decent place to live.  That a home is a stabilizing force for a family.  That a home forges a legacy of economic security and opportunity.  That home ownership is empowering.And statistics bear this out.  Before partnering with Habitat, getting their finances in order, and putting in hundreds of hours of sweat equity, 55% of eventual Habitat homeowners were on public assistance.  But once they become Habitat homeowners, these families are able to pay an affordable mortgage and regular property taxes.  Their children vastly improve in school success with a nearly 70% rise in grades and studying, making college a more realistic possibility.  Most importantly, virtually 90% of Habitat homeowners finally feel positive about the future for themselves and their families!  Considering the tremendous obstacles these families have to overcome to become homeowners, that outcome alone makes Women Build supremely rewarding and worthwhile.For most of Apopka’s Women Builders, supporting Habitat financially is a years long labor of love.  But actually helping construct one of the homes remained elusive, until now.  Thanks to Habitat’s Juniper Bend and Arbor Bend communities at 13th Street and S Washington Avenue, Apopka’s fifty can now partner with like-minded women they might otherwise never have met.  Building connections, working alongside other women on an actual construction site, and making Apopka stronger, one family at a time, are major motivators for these generous women.  But, above all, is the heartwarming realization that, through the women Build effort, another Apopka family will be lifted up and freed from the crushing worry of no safe, decent, affordable housing for their family.There’s still time for you to support this terrific work.  If you know one of the fabulous fifty personally, contribute to their dedicated “First Giving” page.  If not, you can share in the build cost by going to .  Every tax-deductible donation is critical no matter the size.  To paraphrase a famous quote, “If you think your (donation is) too small to make a difference, you have never been in bed with a mosquito”! What do 50 dynamic, super busy Apopka women from wildly different backgrounds have in common this spring?  Each one is pooling her efforts, skills, networks, and muscle to help build an affordable home for a hard-working local family.  By joining Habitat for Humanity’s “Women Build 2017”, these ladies have committed to raise the money, then raise the walls, for one of the 58 new Habitat homes breaking ground in Apopka next month.  Tapping into their personal and business networks, these fabulous fifty, working in creatively-named teams, have inspired over 300 donors to share their passion to make a profound difference for struggling families in our community.  Together, Teams “Mermaids”, “Waste Management”, “Women of Worth (W.O.W.)”, “Finrock”, “Ryder Women’s Leadership Forum Team”, “Lovely Women at Work”, “Wells Fargo”, “Virtuous Women”, and “Apopka Feisty Gems” have, in less than two months, raised over $40,000!  That’s more than 30% of the total $125,000 goal set by Habitat Seminole-Apopka for this year’s Women Build.  And they’re not done yet.Each team is still actively fundraising both through their personal and Team “First Giving” fundraising pages and through Team-sponsored fundraising events of their choosing.  For example, Team Mermaids will host a “FUNdraiser” at Beef ‘O’ Brady’s in Apopka (1410 Rock Springs Rd.) on Thursday, May 4th.  As a reliable supporter of community events, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s is generously donating 10% of all sales, both in-restaurant and takeout, from 4pm to close.  Additionally, attendees will have the opportunity to raise even more donations by participating in a “Chinese Raffle”, a Silent Auction and a chance to “Split-the-Pot”.  Fabulous prizes are at stake!center_img LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply TAGSHabitat for HumanityMermaidsSuzanne Kidd Previous articleState Rep. Jennifer Sullivan Schedules Apopka Office HoursNext articleWhy is April 18th the federal tax deadline this year? Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here Free webinar for job seekers on best interview answers, hosted by Goodwill June 11 Please enter your comment! The Anatomy of Fear last_img read more

More steroid use suspensions expected following Braun

first_imgYour comments are welcome. Follow @NewPghCourier on Twitter us at our mobile app at ALEX RODRIGUEZ (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)NEW YORK (AP)—Ryan Braun stood on a spring training field and proclaimed he was innocent of using banned testosterone.“I would bet my life,” he said back then, “that this substance never entered my body at any point.”Seventeen months later, he accepted a 65-game suspension from baseball and admitted, “I am not perfect. I realize now that I have made some mistakes. I am willing to accept the consequences of those actions.”The 2011 National League MVP was suspended without pay for the rest of the season and the postseason Monday, the start of sanctions involving players reportedly tied to a Florida clinic accused of distributing performance-enhancing drugs.Attention quickly turned to who’s next? Will Alex Rodriguez or any of the other players tied in media reports to the Biogenesis of America clinic get disciplined and, if so, when?“I’m pretty sure Braunie won’t be the last,” Detroit All-Star outfielder Torii Hunter said. “It’s going to be for the next 100 years, somebody’s going to try to beat the system, and as long as they keep catching guys, the system works.”Braun, a five-time All-Star, accepted a penalty 15 games longer than the one he avoided last year when an arbitrator overturned his positive test for elevated testosterone because the urine sample had been improperly handled.RYAN BRAUN (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) More than a dozen players were targeted by MLB following a report by Miami New Times in January revealing relationships between Biogenesis and major leaguers. When Yahoo Sports reported in February that Braun’s name was listed in Biogenesis’ record, Braun said his lawyer had retained clinic owner Anthony Bosch as a consultant. Braun issued a statement that said “I have nothing to hide.”MLB Commissioner Bud Selig announced Braun’s penalty, citing the outfielder for unspecified “violations” of both baseball’s drug program and labor contract. Braun’s ban will cost him about $3 million of his $8.5 million salary. With the Brewers in last place in the NL Central, they aren’t likely to have any playoff games for him to miss.“I wish to apologize to anyone I may have disappointed,” Braun said. “I am glad to have this matter behind me once and for all, and I cannot wait to get back to the game I love.”Under the agreement reached by MLB and the players’ association the specifics of Braun’s admission were not made public.A person familiar with the deal, speaking on condition of anonymity because no statements were authorized, said 50 games of the penalty were connected to Biogenesis. The additional 15 games stemmed from Braun’s actions during the grievance that overturned his positive test from October 2011. The suspension will count as a first violation of the drug program, the person said.“I’m shocked, but people make mistakes every day,” Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia said. “He’ll serve his time but, hopefully, he’ll be able to continue his career.”Union head Michael Weiner said last week that arbitration hearings for players contesting suspensions likely would not start until September, which would delay any penalty until next season. But he also indicated the union would urge players to make a deal and get a suspension over with if there was strong evidence of guilt.“I am deeply gratified to see Ryan taking this bold step,” Weiner said in a statement. “It vindicates the rights of all players under the joint drug program. It is good for the game that Ryan will return soon to continue his great work both on and off the field.”Braun’s acceptance of the suspension marks a 180-degree turnaround from his defiant spring training news conference in Phoenix last year, after his 50-game ban was overturned.“We won,” he said then, “because the truth is on my side. The truth is always relevant, and at the end of the day, the truth prevailed.”The 29-year-old Braun was hitting .298 with nine homers and 38 RBIs this year, slowed by a thumb injury that limited him to one game between June 9 and Friday. He was at Miller Park before Monday’s game against San Diego and addressed the Brewers, then left without speaking to reporters.“He apologized,” pitcher John Axford said. “Whatever else was said beyond that, I don’t think we need to carry outside of the clubhouse.”Braun met with MLB investigators in late June. Baseball’s probe was boosted when Bosch, who ran Biogenesis, agreed last month to cooperate with the sport’s investigators.The suspension is the latest in a string of high-profile drug cases across sports. Cyclist Lance Armstrong, a seven-time Tour de France winner, ended years of denials in January, admitting he doped to win. Positive tests were disclosed this month involving sprinters Tyson Gay, Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson.By serving the entire penalty this year, Braun gains a slight monetary advantage. His salary increases to $10 million next year, when a 65-game suspension would cost him about $500,000 more.“We commend Ryan Braun for taking responsibility for his past actions,” Rob Manfred, MLB’s executive vice president for economics and league affairs, said in a statement. “We all agree that it is in the best interests of the game to resolve this matter. When Ryan returns, we look forward to him making positive contributions to Major League Baseball, both on and off the field.”Negotiations over penalties for other players haven’t begun, according to a second person familiar with the probe, also speaking on condition of anonymity because no statements were authorized.Rodriguez acknowledged using PEDs while with Texas from 2001-03, but has denied taking them since.A three-time AL MVP, Rodriguez has been sidelined all season following January hip surgery and was hoping to be activated this week. A quadriceps injury developed while he played at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and caused him to remain on the disabled list. He is not expected at the Yankees’ minor league complex in Tampa, Fla., until Wednesday.Braun became the latest star tripped up by baseball’s drug rules.The sport was criticized for allowing bulked-up sluggers to set power records in the 1990s and only started testing in 2003. Since then, testing and penalties have become more stringent and last year San Francisco’s Melky Cabrera was suspended for 50 games, just weeks after he was voted MVP of the All-Star game.Four All-Stars this year have been linked in media reports to Biogenesis: Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz, San Diego shortstop Everth Cabrera, Oakland pitcher Bartolo Colon and Detroit shortstop Jhonny ­Peralta.“I guess it is what it is,” Cruz said of Braun’s suspension. “I don’t have any comment.”Other players tied to Biogenesis in media reports include Melky Cabrera, now with the Toronto Blue Jays, Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli and Seattle catcher Jesus Montero.“It’s frustrating to know that there are people who have played on performance-enhancing substances against us,” Los Angeles Angels pitcher C.J. Wilson said. “Whether it was this year, last year, couple years ago—even the guys who got caught, it’s not like they got tested the day that they started doing it, so I feel like this is the first domino to fall.”last_img read more

GREATNESS CUT SHORT — Aubrey Bruce remembers NBA legend Kobe Bryant

first_imgby Aubrey Bruce, For New Pittsburgh CourierOur experiences with life and death are quite often juxtaposed so that at times, it may be difficult to distinguish one from the other. When that happens we have to endure worn out, tired and lazy phrases such as: “Here today, gone tomorrow”; “We have to take it one day at a time”; and “You never know what the sunrise is going to bring.”That final utterance was an original Aubrey Bruce expression based on the death of my father and mother.I remember vividly where I was when my parents passed and where I was when Otis Redding and Roberto Clemente died. And I will forever remember where I was and what I was doing on Jan. 26, 2020, when I was informed that famed NBA superstar Kobe Bryant, and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, had died in a helicopter crash.Seven other people died due to the accident, as the helicopter crashed in Calabasas, Calif., not far from Los Angeles. Bryant and the rest of the passengers were on their way to a girls basketball game at the Mamba Sports Academy in Newbury Park, Calif.A husband to Vanessa and a father to four, Bryant starred at Lower Merion High School in suburban Philadelphia, then played his entire 20-year NBA career with the Los Angeles Lakers. He won five NBA titles, was an 18-time All-Star, and is regarded as one of the best to ever play the game of basketball.Bryant retired in 2016.I met Bryant on March 21, 1996, at the McDonalds All-American High School Classic, played at the old Civic Arena. Bryant was just 17 years old at the time. I was sort of torn between Bryant and Lester Earl, a kid from Baton Rouge, La. Earl was a 6’8” forward who had superior leaping ability and had even won the slam dunk competition a couple of days before at the Fitzgerald Field House. Earl has since faded into obscurity. However, regardless of any other player’s ability, real or imagined, it was the charisma and magnetism of Kobe Bryant that set him apart at such a young age.When we had finished the interview, Bryant looked at photographer Juan Glover and said: “I’m ready when you are.” As you can see in the photograph in this story, I wasn’t ready. I also wasn’t ready and neither was the world prepared for Kobe Bryant to be taken away from us so prematurely.There is nothing more that I can say other than, “Kobe, I will miss you.”(ABOUT THE TOP PHOTO: A 1996 PHOTO OF KOBE BRYANT and Courier sports columnist Aubrey Bruce, when Bryant played at the former Civic Arena at age 17.)last_img read more

WWE women’s movement takes hit with Saudi Arabia involvement

first_imgWill you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college WWE set aside its women’s movement in favor of a more lucrative statement in Saudi Arabia, an event next month titled Crown Jewel with female wrestlers banned from competition. The deal has prompted a public smackdown from fans , bipartisan criticism from politicians and lampooning from late-night hosts, backlash that took a turn and grew louder after writer Jamal Khashoggi was killed in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul .The financials are murky but WWE was expected to make between $20 million and $40 million from the two Saudi Arabian shows this year, as part of a 10-year deal.“WWE will say running Saudi Arabia is all about their hope of inspiring change,” wrestling journalist Jason Powell said. “It screams cash grab regardless of how they spin it. I’m happy the women are getting their own show and they deserve it, but the company’s ongoing business relationship with the Saudis is a black cloud hanging over not just the Evolution event but the company as a whole.”There are now hints the show may not happen as planned. The wildly popular Undertaker heard boos when he talked about Crown Jewel in a promo last week on “Smackdown.” WWE has heavily downplayed Saudia Arabia itself in its promoting of the event. The country wasn’t mentioned as Crown Jewel’s site on recent television shows and it doesn’t show up on advertising on its website .WWE has said it was “monitoring the situation.”ADVERTISEMENT Natalya Neidhart, niece of WWE Hall of Famer Bret “Hitman” Hart, said she hoped that should WWE proceed, changes for women could happen over the course of the deal.“You’re not going to change a culture overnight. I think WWE is taking such positive steps in doing positive things over in Saudi Arabia,” she said. “One day, I believe that we will be over there.”Bliss said she believed women should get the chance to wrestle in Riyadh.“I don’t feel like it’s out of reach,” she said. “Who knows? I don’t think it’s ever not a possibility.”Until then, if ever, WWE is counting on events like Evolution to push women into the headlines.WWE has started to give women equal billing with men on the biggest cards. Its event at Nassau Coliseum on Sunday is a statement, topped by one of the most famous and marketable athletes in sports in Rousey.The WWE has delivered a list of firsts for women over the last two years — from the brutality of a Hell in a Cell match, the ladder-climbing, briefcase-snatching Money in the Bank bout to the Royal Rumble where Rousey made her debut — the kind of over-the-top gimmick fights that for decades had been reserved for men only.“We’re running out of first-evers because the women are taking over,” Neidhart said. “I feel like in the WWE right now, it’s becoming normal for women to be at the forefront.”John Cena, Daniel Bryan and The Miz are sitting Sunday out. Rousey headlines Evolution against Nikki Bella, Becky Lynch takes on Charlotte Flair, and Bliss and Mickie James team up to face returning stars Trish Stratus and Lita in the other top matches.WWE was a bit late in the fight game in pushing females to the top of the card. Rousey headlined her first UFC pay-per-view in 2013 and female boxers have long straddled the line between seriousness and sideshow. WWE first saw the value of a legitimate women’s division in its developmental NXT promotion and started giving major story lines and longer matches to future WWE stars like Flair, Banks, Bayley and Asuka. Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown MOST READ Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anewcenter_img Bliss grew up a wrestling fan (she laughed that her grandmother wanted to marry Dusty Rhodes) and she’d jump in a pool with her cousins as they mimicked stars like the Hardy Boyz and Lita. Now, little girls emulate the 5-foot-1 troublemaking “Goddess” of WWE, who, despite her bad-girl persona, credits fans who pushed on social media for women to get star billing like Steve Austin or the Rock.Bliss, who signed with the WWE in 2015 in the midst of its shift, described it as a time when fans wanted more for women.“Our fans saw that we were getting 30-second matches. They saw we were capable of more, we just weren’t getting the opportunities,” Bliss said. “It was our fans who rallied behind us and saw we were deserving of more.”Stephanie McMahon, WWE’s chief brand officer and main event female villain, is touting Sunday’s show as a chance to show how much the company has changed its presentation of women.“Our women were treated as secondary, if not tertiary type, characters and our fans had had enough,” McMahon told The Associated Press before a pay-per-view event in August. “They started a hashtag that trended on Twitter for three days, #givedivasachance. Specifically calling for better matches, longer matches, more athleticism, better story lines. Their voices were so loud that our chairman and CEO, my father (Vince McMahon), heard them and said, keep watching and we’ll give divas a chance.”WWE is making clear its long term plans even though those efforts for women have been clouded by its Saudi Arabia deal. The promotion wants to keep the focus on the women actually fighting in New York, not their absence overseas.“Now, you have little girls everywhere saying, ‘I want to be a WWE superstar,’” Neidhart said. “I want to be like those girls. It’s because of the movement.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew LATEST STORIES Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum Wozniacki gets 1st win at this year’s WTA Finals “The welcome was so warm,” Bliss said of fighting Banks for the WWE Raw women’s championship, a year after female stars made only promotional appearances at the event. “They were up-to-date with women’s story lines. There were little girls crying in happiness. It was just so cool because we got to have that moment with them.”The December bout was widely hailed as an empowering, key moment for the sports entertainment giant — progress toward a stated goal to transform how women’s wrestling is promoted. WWE is taking another step this weekend with a pay-per-view card in New York featuring all female wrestlers, dubbed Evolution and headlined by former UFC star Ronda Rousey .FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back Chriss“It’s not just a women’s evolution in WWE,” Bliss said. “It’s an evolution all over the world.”Don’t ring the bell for the win just yet. FILE – In this March 6, 2018, file photo, professional wrestler Ronda Rousey speaks at a press conference in East Rutherford, N.J. WWE has benched the women’s movement in favor of a more lucrative statement next month by running the Crown Jewel event in Saudi Arabia where female wrestlers are banned from competition. (Marko Georgiev/The Record via AP, File)Former WWE champ Alexa Bliss ditched her skimpy two-piece ring gear for a full bodysuit. Performing for the first time in the United Arab Emirates, where strict rules govern what women wear in public, Bliss wasn’t about to risk offending a nation set to have WWE female wrestlers fight on the same card as the men.She went hold-to-hold with Sasha Banks to make wrestling history — and fans in a country where women have had to fight for the right to drive responded with chants of “This is hope!”ADVERTISEMENT View commentslast_img read more

Satellite boost for African telecoms

first_imgOver half of the satellite’s capacity has already been reserved for several leading continental companies, including Vodacom International, Gateway Communications Africa, Zain Nigeria and Gilat Satcom. Debt and equity funding Intelsat will provide almost 75% of the equity funding, at approximately $25-million, while the remaining 25% will be provided by South African investment companies Convergence Partners and Altriah Telecoms. Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material Bermuda-based international satellite service provider Intelsat is partnering with a South African investor group led by Convergence Partners to build and launch a new satellite that will be ideally positioned to serve the African continent. SAinfo reporter Africa has been one of the fastest growing regions for fixed satellite services in recent years, fuelled by demand for critical infrastructure from communications providers and television broadcasters. Customers signed up “Convergence Partners believes that investments in African projects of this nature can offer superior returns while also accelerating the socio-economic development of the continent.”center_img Intelsat added that pre-orders for satellite capacity currently totalled more than $350-million, with some contracts for up to 15 years of service on the satellite. The project is expected to cost a total of about US$250-million (about R2.55-billion), and will be funded approximately 85% with debt and 15% with equity, with the largest participants in the debt funding consortium being South Africa’s Nedbank Capital and the Industrial Development Corporation. “Once in service, Intelsat New Dawn will be an integral part of our global, resilient satellite network, providing growth capacity and allowing us to further expand our services to our long-time customers in Africa.” Convergence Partners chairman Andile Ngcaba said the satellite would “provide world-class connectivity, allowing businesses to grow and rural communities to connect. 11 December 2008 “The New Dawn joint venture is a great example of the type of creative investments Intelsat will use to further develop our fleet in regions where we believe there is unmet demand,” Intelsat CEO David McGlade said in a statement this week. The satellite, to be called Intelsat New Dawn, will feature a payload optimised to deliver wireless backhaul, broadband and television programming to the continent, and is expected to enter service in early 2011.last_img read more

Developing SA’s rugby coaches

first_img12 July 2013The South African Rugby Union (Saru) on Thursday launched its Footprint Programme in Mthatha with the help of Springboks Siya Kolisi, Adriaan Strauss, Trevor Nyakane, Duane Vermeulen and Pierre Spies, Springboks assistant coaches and members of the Springbok Women’s team.Launched at a Saru Coaching Symposium in rural Transkei, a two-day event jointly arranged by Saru and the Eastern Cape Department of Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture, the programme aims to deliver the latest rugby coaching techniques and skills to all corners of South Africa.On Wednesday, 50 coaches from the Transkei Rugby Union, a sub-union of the Border Rugby Union, attended the symposium, which included a workshop presentation and a practical demonstration coaching session by the three Springbok assistant coaches and Springbok players Kolisi, Strauss, Spies, Vermeulen and Nyakane. They were joined by Mandisa Williams, the Springbok Sevens Women’s captain.PresentationRassie Erasmus, the Saru General Manager for High Performance, delivered a presentation on Wednesday to eager coaches at the Walter Sisulu University, while Springbok assistant coaches, Johann van Graan, Ricardo Loubscher and John McFarland, using the Springboks, demonstrated to the coaches how to master the basic technical techniques in areas such as tackling, scrumming, lineout play and the breakdown.Erasmus, a former Springbok captain and provincial rugby coach, said the Footprint programme is designed to assist coaches in even the most remote parts of the vast South African platteland.“This programme aims to assist the coaches to teach and apply the proper coaching techniques in the technical aspects of the game.“Players in the rural areas have the natural skill, flair and the ability but they lack the technical skills which are needed in areas such as scrums, lineouts and the breakdown,” Erasmus said.Web-based programme“It is a web-based programme that is really user-friendly and easy to understand. Coaches will be able to access a website from where they will be able to download the necessary materials, which are designed in an easy to understand formula.”Recognising that not everyone has access to a computer, Erasmus added: “We fully realise that access to computers and connectivity are real barriers in such areas, and where a coach is unable to access the website, we will supply them with DVDs and further instructions by text messages. In this regard, we will work closely with the Eastern Cape Department of Sport to establish a support network for all the coaches.“The idea is to build a database of players in the areas, track and monitor their progress and then to give us feedback at a later stage so we can design maybe some methods of intervention.“The coaches are so enthusiastic and willing to learn and I am glad we could come and assist the development of rugby in an area where there is such passion and love for the game,” said Erasmus.Eventually, he added, Saru aims to spread the pilot programme to all corners of South Africa.DelightedKolisi said he was delighted to assist in the project. “I know there is a lot of raw talent in places such as Mthatha and other rural areas of the Eastern Cape,” he said.“It is very important for players to learn the proper, basic techniques from a young age and who better to teach them that than the coaches. I am therefore delighted that Saru has initiated this project, which is aimed at upskilling the coaches.”Deidre Sedras, General Manager for the Eastern Cape Department of Sport, said the Department wants to increase the base, quality and support of local coaches through this programme.“We are extremely proud to be a partner in this programme and we hope this will be the start of a very successful partnership with Saru in this regard,” she said.SAinfo reporter and SA Rugbylast_img read more

South Africans nominated for Innovation Prize for Africa

first_imgFour South African innovations have made it on to this year’s list of 10 nominees for the Innovation Prize for Africa. Its aim is to encourage local solutions to challenges and inspire continued growth on the continent. The winner will be announced in a ceremony in June in Botswana. This year’s Innovation Prize for Africa takes place in June in Botswana. Four South Africans are in the running. (Image: African Press Organisation)• Girls in space! Africa’s first private satellite – designed by schoolgirls• How can digital technology boost growth in Africa?• Busting the myth that Africa doesn’t produce scientific innovators• African scientists make headway in grasping persistent TB bacteria• Robotic gliders boost for ocean research• Meet the global leaders heading WEF Africa 2016 Priya PitamberFour South Africans have been included in the list of 10 nominees announced for the Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA). Run by the African Innovation Foundation (AIF) and now in its fifth year, this year’s theme is “Made in Africa”. The aim is to create home-grown solutions for Africa to spur growth and prosperity on the continent.“As Africans, we have the talent, potential and clout to solve our own problems with ingenuity too, and IPA is testimony of this,” said IAP director Pauline Mujawamariya Koelbl. “In the past five years, I’ve seen innovation grow from a mere buzzword to a sturdy path for African growth in multidisciplinary industries across the continent.”There has been tremendous growth in applications and keen interest from innovators and innovation enablers since the inception of the awards. “IPA 2016 attracted a record 3 600-plus innovators and received 985 successful submissions from 46 African countries,” it said in a statement. To date, it has attracted more than 6 000 innovators from 50 African countries.The nominees and their inventionsThis year, the nominees include breakthrough innovations in malaria and other public health burdens, smart solutions for farmers and dynamic energy initiatives.Tackling malaria and other public health concernsDr Eddy Agbo, Nigeria: Urine Test for MalariaUrine Test for Malaria (UMT) is a rapid non-blood diagnostic medical device that is able diagnose malaria in less than 25 minutes. Africa is still in the process of eradicating malaria. Diagnosis of the disease can take a long time, and if the patient is not treated quickly enough, it can lead to kidney failure, lung fluid build-up, and even death.The technology in the UMT detects malaria parasite proteins in the patient’s urine. The UMT is simple and affordable, and a potential game changer in managing malaria across Africa.Valentin Agon, Benin: Api-PaluApi-Palu is an anti-malaria drug treatment developed out of natural plant extract. It is significantly cheaper than available anti-malarial drugs, and has great inhibitory effects on 3D7 strains of plasmodium falciparum, the causative agent of malaria.The drug is available in tablets, capsules or syrup. It has been approved in Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad, and Central Africa Republic because of its therapeutic and non-toxic effects.Dr Imogen Wright, South Africa: ExatypeExatype is a software solution that enables health care workers to determine the responsiveness of HIV-positive patients to antiretroviral (ARV) drug treatment. A growing number of people are increasingly resistant to ARVs. Exatype processes the highly complex data produced by advanced “next-generation” DNA sequencing of the HIV DNA in a patient’s blood. Through a simple report, it detects drugs that are resistant to the patient, then highlights the need to avoid these to ensure successful treatment.It has the potential to contribute towards effectively managing HIV/Aids in Africa, and also holds promise in helping to detect drug resistance for other diseases, such as tuberculosis and malaria.Dr Kit Vaughan, South Africa: AcesoAceso improves breast cancer detection by using imaging technology that is capable of performing full-field digital mammography and automated breast ultrasound at the same time.If diagnosed early enough, the cancer can be treated successfully. However, because 40% of women have dense tissue, their cancers cannot be seen on X-ray. Furthermore, a false negative finding can have devastating consequences. This world first system is protected by international patents and has been successfully tested in two separate clinical trials with 120 women.IF you could do one innovative thing to show your LOVE for #Africa, what would it be? #MadeinAfrica #IPA2016— IPA Prize (@IPAprize) May 3, 2016Design architecture and learning platformsDr Youssef Rashed, Egypt: The Plate PackageThe Plate Package (PLPAK) is a software solution that assesses the architecture of building plans or technical drawings, determining structural integrity of the end design. PLPAK applies the boundary element based method to analyse and view practical design of building foundations and slabs.It enables engineers to represent building slabs over sophisticated foundation models easily, building information modelling techniques and eliminating human error. With the rapid growth of African cities, there is increased demand for infrastructural developments to support the growing population.Godwin Benson, Nigeria: TuteriaTuteria is an innovative peer-to-peer learning online platform that allows people who want to learn any skill, whether formal or informal, to connect with anyone else near them who is offering that skill. For instance, a student needing maths skills can connect online with someone in their vicinity offering remedial classes in mathematics.Tutors and learners form an online community that connects them, and once a fit is established, they meet offline for practical exchange. Both tutors and learners are thoroughly vetted to ensure safety, accountability and a quality learning experience.Smart farming solutionsOlufemi Odeleye, Nigeria: the TryctorThe Tryctor is a mini tractor modelled on the motorcycle. By attaching various farming implements, it can carry out similar operations as a conventional tractor, but on a smaller scale.Through inspired alterations to a motorcycle’s engine, gearing system and chassis, this innovation has made it possible to mechanise agriculture in Africa for small-scale farmers in a way that was previously not possible.Additionally, the Tryctor is easy to use and cheaper to maintain as 60% of its parts and components are locally sourced.Samuel Rigu, Kenya: Safi Sarvi OrganicsSafi Sarvi Organics is a low-cost fertiliser made from purely organic products and waste from farm harvests, designed to improve yields for farmers by up to 30%.Safi Sarvi costs the same as traditional fertilisers, can reverse farmers’ soil degradation and lead to improved yield and income. The product uses biochar-based fertiliser that can counteract soil acidity, retaining nutrients and moisture in the soil.The carbon-rich fertiliser also removes carbon from the atmosphere by at least 2.2 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent per acre of farm per year. The nominees for this year’s Innovation Prize for come from all over the continent. (Image: IPA, Facebook)Dynamic energy initiativesAndre Nel, South Africa: Green TowerGreen Tower is an off-grid water heating and air conditioning solution based on solar power that uses advanced thermos-dynamics to create up to 90% savings in electricity consumption.The Green Tower improves efficiency of a solar heat pump with solar thermal collectors, low pressure storage tanks and heat exchangers.With Africa’s middle class rapidly growing and demand for energy outstripping supply, this initiative has the potential for large-scale roll out. Green Tower can conserve limited energy resources, diverting them from heating and cooling systems to more productive industries.Johan Theron, South Africa: PowerGuardPowerGuard enables consumers to determine the maximum amount of power supply required for daily operations. Consumers can thus reduce their power demand, especially during peak times, leading to a more efficient power supply, and helping to reduce power cuts.Consumers are able to set their own maximum peak power usage needs. This technology substantially reduces load shedding and power rationing, diverting power to more productive industries.The existence of a smart grid can help to reduce the pressure on existing infrastructure while moving the continent slowly towards renewable energy.The big nightThe winner will be announced at a gala ceremony on 23 June at the Gaborone International Conference Centre in Botswana.Watch this:There is a grand share prize of $150 000 (about R2.3-million).last_img read more


first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest 2015 Trade TalkThe Ohio Ag Net’s Dale Minyo visits with Richard Plackmeier, a market analyst with CHS Hedging about current trends in the energy market and demand.CHS Richard Plackemier Hedginglast_img

Ravena makes up for miscues with ‘lucky’ clutch 3

first_imgLATEST STORIES Ateneo escaped with an 80-78 victory over the Green Archers in the 2017 Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup behind Ravena’s clutch heroics.READ: Ravena’s late three lifts Ateneo past La SalleFEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutBut things didn’t go the younger Ravena’s way early. He even got pulled out of the court in the second half after failing to follow coach Tab Baldwin’s defensive instructions.The 20-year-old knew what he did wrong and bide his time to make up for his mistakes. Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. Smith unstoppable as TNT clips Ginebra, takes Game 1 “I did exactly what coach Tab told us not to do, and I understood why I was benched. Coach told us to be composed, but I was rushing and that’s when La Salle trapped us more. But when he told me to contribute on defense, I just made it a point to do my job,” he said.READ: Thirdy admits there’s no escaping comparisons to dad, brotherHe was stellar on the defensive end when he finally returned on the court, but Ravena’s biggest moment came on offense, when he received a pass from Tyler Tio on the left corner and drilled the go-ahead trey with 9.2 seconds remaining to put Ateneo up, 76-74.“The opportunity just presented itself. Seeing how hard my teammates worked, I was thinking that I didn’t want to let them down. We have already went though a lot of hardships. So whatever I needed to do, whether I got the ball or not, I have to grab the opportunity,” he said. “Tyler (Tio) followed coach Tab’s play and he did it very well, drawing my defender in and kicking it out to me. I was just lucky to get the three points because I came off the bench cold and I wasn’t really warmed up.”That basket steered the Blue Eagles to the tight victory where Ravena finished with nine points and five rebounds in the win, much to the delight of his older brother.ADVERTISEMENT 1 dead in Cavite blast, fire Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netAs if Thirdy Ravena needed any more pressure to deliver for Ateneo against La Salle on Sunday, his older brother Kiefer had to remind about it.Thirdy said the his older brother told him to “perform well” because he will be at the Arena for the first meeting of the rivals in the pre-season.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken READ: Dream Ateneo-La Salle UAAP showdown looms“Again, I’m just lucky,” he said.It may have been just a pre-season win but the Blue Eagles are happy to get one against their archrivals.“Of course, Ateneo-La Salle rivalry goes very, very deep. If you’re an Atenean or a Lasallian, playing in the game is enough motivation. Of course, La Salle was La Salle and they were very intense offensively and defensively. But although it’s just the summer league, we’re happy to get the win. But we know that we still have lots to work on. La Salle is still a strong team and we have to continue working on our game and keep working as a team,” he said.center_img What ‘missteps’? Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: 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 WATCH: Firefighters rescue baby seal found in parking garage World’s 50 Best Restaurants launches new drinking and dining guide View comments Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Gameslast_img read more

Buckeyes leave Sunshine State with another victory

It wasn’t pretty, but for the second time this season, Ohio State traveled to the state of Florida and came out with a win. In a game with 37 turnovers and 71 missed shots, No. 2 OSU beat Florida State 58-44 Tuesday night as a part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. OSU scored the first seven points of the game, but the Buckeyes seemed uncomfortable on the offensive end for most of the first half. They shot just 38 percent in the first 20 minutes and were forced several times to take contested, low-percentage shots near the end of the shot clock. But as off as the Buckeyes were to start the game, FSU was worse. The Seminoles made only six of their 23 first-half shots and were out-rebounded by 14 as OSU took an 11-point lead at the break. OSU opened up a 17-point lead in the second half, but the Seminoles answered with a 7-0 run to cut the lead to 10. The remainder of the game went back and forth with the Buckeyes’ lead hovering around 10 points as both teams continued their offensive struggles. A 3-pointer from FSU’s Deividas Dulkys cut the lead to seven with about four minutes to go, but that was as close as the Seminoles would get. OSU senior Jon Diebler got a steal and an easy basket in transition, giving the Buckeyes an insurmountable 11-point lead with just more than two minutes remaining. Diebler led all Buckeye scorers with 12 points but was just 3-of-12 shooting from the field. Freshman Jared Sullinger finished with 11 points and grabbed a team-high 12 rebounds, recording his third double-double of the season. Junior William Buford fouled out with just less than eight minutes to go and finished with nine points, going 4-for-12. The Buckeyes finished 19-of-59 from the field and 4-of-20 from beyond the arc. OSU is off until Dec. 9, when it hosts IUPUI. read more