One would imagine that a match-winning hundred like the 281 against Australia in the Kolkata Test would be the best moment in VVS Laxman’s career but no, the former India cricketer picked his maiden century against the same opposition in the Sydney Test as the one closer to his heart.The stylish batsman revealed this at the release of his autobiography ‘281 and Beyond’ in Hyderabad on Thursday night.Laxman, who shot to the limelight with a knock of 167 in 2000, believes this was closer to his heart as it was first international hundred and it gave him confidence and belief that he was capable of playing at the highest level.Also Read – Prithvi Shaw stole Virat Kohli’s thunder in Rajkot, says VVS Laxman”From 1996 to 2000, I never had a hundred. I never ever felt I was able to establish myself in the Indian team. If I had not got that 167, probably I would not have got another chance to play. The fashion in which I got these runs and against quality bowling on a challenging wicket and tough conditions gave me the confidence.””It removed doubts and apprehensions I had about my game. I started to feel that I belong to international cricket and that I can go out and perform against the best bowlers,” added Laxman in a chat with popular cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle.Also Read – Thanks for all the memories: Vaughan, Laxman pay tribute to Alastair CookLaxman, who retired from international cricket in 2012 after a career spanning 16 years, is known for his historic knock of 281 in 2001. His inning and record stand with Rahul Dravid, set up a stunning victory for India after following on.advertisementLaxman believes this was turning point for his career and also in the fortunes of the Indian team.He also revealed that this knock of 281 did not come as a surprise. Known as ‘Very Very Special’ in cricketing circles, Laxman said with the extensive fitness training and hard work, he was physically and mentally ready to play that kind of inning.Also Read – CAC trio of Tendulkar, Ganguly and Laxman could move away in new BCCIHe did not agree with Harsha Bhogle that 281 trapped him as people started to have huge expectations from him.”I learnt after the first 4 years of struggle at highest level that especially in our country you can’t afford to fall into a trap. Everyone will have expectations. I never played game to fulfill expectations of others.”Also Read – Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman plant saplings under Haritha Haram programmeThe event saw Harsha Bhogle in free and frank conversation with Laxman, his family members, former cricketers Arshad Ayub, Venkatapathi Raju and autobiography co-writer R. Kaushik.Telangana’s Information Technology Minister K.T. Rama Rao and badminton coach P. Gopichand also shared their views at the event attended by former cricketers, coaches and friends of Laxman.Also Read – VVS Laxman’s kids broke down after David Warner’s ball-tampering banLaxman, who preferred cricketing career over becoming a physician like his parents, said the toughest decision for him was giving up as an opening batsman.In 1996 when Laxman was included in the Indian team he was announced as an opener. “I took it up as a challenge. It was one of the tough decisions,” he said.When he was dropped in 2000, he joined the Hyderabad team and started playing first class cricket. “I told myself that I am going to lead the life as a first class cricketer. I decided I will work hard but I will never ever open the batting. It was toughest decision because there was no guarantee of getting into playing XI of India,” he said.He recalled that at that time the middle order was packed with experienced players like Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Mohammed Azharuddin and Sourav Ganguly.Laxman represented India in 134 Tests, scoring 8781 runs at 45.97. He scored 17 Test centuries, six of which came against Australia.(With IANS inputs)Also Watch – It’s one of weakest teams vs one of strongest, says Harbhajan Singh
New Delhi: BJP president Amit Shah Saturday cited Sam Pitroda’s comments to accuse the Congress of “insulting” martyrdom of soldiers killed in the Pulwama terror attack and asserted that only his party can ensure the country’s security. In a fresh offensive against the Congress a day after its leader Pitroda questioned the government’s aggressive action against Pakistan, Shah asked Congress president Rahul Gandhi to apologise to people and armed forces for these comments. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details Speaking to media, Shah said Pitroda’s statement conveyed that the Pulwama terror attack was a “routine” incident carried out by a few people for which Pakistan cannot be blamed, as the BJP chief asked Gandhi to make his party’s stand clear on the issue. Pitroda, he added, also questioned surgical strikes and air strikes by the Indian armed forces. “Does the Congress believe that terror incidents in the country have nothing to do with the Pakistan government or Pakistan Army?” Shah asked, seeking Gandhi’s response. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday Pitroda is Indian Overseas Congress chief and is seen to be one of the key advisers to Gandhi. His comments, including that one cannot “jump on entire nation” (Pakistan) just because some people from there “came here and attacked” in reference to Pulwama terror attack, were Friday seized on by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to lead the BJP’s all-out attack against the Congress on the issues of terrorism. Keeping the heat on the opposition party on the issues of terrorism and nationalism in the run-up to the Lok Sabha polls, Shah said Saturday the Congress is known for “vote bank” and “appeasement” politics during election and asked if such politics can be above national interest and the “blood of martyrs”. The BJP president then drew a comparison between the Congress-led UPA dispensation’s “no strong action” against terrorism and the Modi government’s “zero tolerance” against it to assert that only the saffron party is capable of securing India. “I want to reassure people of this country that only the BJP can provide security to the country, can give a befitting response to terrorism and can foil Pakistan’s conspiracy,” he said. The Modi government has succeeded in isolating Pakistan internationally and the morale of security forces is sky high, he said. Shah said the Congress president on March 7 had said that questions raised on air strikes should be answered. “But whose questions he wants to be answered and who raising questions on Indian Air Force. Who do you support? It is not proper for the national president of a party to raise such questions and doubt the IAF,” he said. Attacking Gandhi, he added, “When anti-national slogans were raised in JNU you called it freedom of expression and you also went there in their support. This is an example of your abhorrent vote bank politics”. The BJP president also rejected the Congress distancing itself from Pitroda’s comments by terming them as his personal views, as he wondered “what is personal view in politics”. People have seen through the Congress’ “strategy” of running an orchestrated campaign like this for vote bank politics and have been distancing themselves from it, Shah said in a swipe at the opposition party. He cited past controversial comments of several Congress leaders – including B K Hariprasad, Kapil Sibal, Digvijay Singh and Sandeep Dikshit among others – from which their party had disassociated itself, and claimed that it is part of Gandhi’s politics. The Congress president should tender an apology without any delay, he demanded. Citing Pitroda’s comments, Shah said Gandhi should also answer if he believes that armed forces’ actions like surgical strikes and air strikes will not work in dealing with terrorism but dialogue with Pakistan will. Shah said many terror attacks were carried out in the UPA rule government and asked, “If terror attacks shouldn’t be responded with surgical strikes and air strikes, then is this the Congress’ policy to deal with terrorism with talks. You opted for talks but what was the result?” The “Sonia Manmohan” government was in power for 10 years but there was no tough action taken against terrorism because the Congress lacked courage, he claimed.
The range of today’s global challenges requires a stronger United Nations that is more representative, transparent and effective, Portugal’s Prime Minister told the General Assembly today, calling for reform of the world’s leading multilateral forum. “The long-term success of a global organization such as the UN depends upon its capacity to respond to ever-changing challenges and new international players, by reforming, adapting and continuously reinventing itself,” Prime Minister José Sócrates stated in his address to the annual high-level general debate.Speaking on behalf of the European Union, whose chairmanship his country currently holds, the Prime Minister stressed the group’s belief that “only with a stronger Organization will we be able to live in a safer, fairer and more developed world.”Whether meeting internationally agreed development goals, combating the growing threat of climate change or responding to the range of threats to international peace and security, he stressed that “global challenges require global responses.”And no institution was better placed to forge global responses to common concerns than the UN, with its ability to convene the nations of the world to address shared problems and coordinate concerted action. Among the common concerns is climate change, which Mr. Sócrates called “one of the great global challenges facing mankind.” He stressed that “our response must be global, and collective.”The EU has already committed itself to cutting its greenhouse gas emissions – responsible for global warming – by at least 20 per cent. “But we want to go further,” he said, announcing that the Union was ready to raise its commitment to 30 per cent. He also highlighted the need to develop “a more responsible energy policy,” as well as innovative technologies to exploit new sources of energy and to improve energy efficiency. The Prime Minister’s call comes one day after an historic gathering of world leaders at UN Headquarters on the subject of climate change, ahead of a major summit to be held in Bali, Indonesia, in December. In his address to the Assembly today, Slovak President Ivan Gašparovic also highlighted the need for the UN to speed up its pace and reform.“We think it is necessary to make the work of newly-created structures and institutions more dynamic, and to set the UN to ensure targeted prevention and solution of concrete problems and conflicts,” he said.The President welcomed last year’s establishment of the Peacebuilding Commission, which was set up to help countries emerging from conflict avoid sliding back into war or chaos. He also noted changes to the work of the Human Rights Council and the UN Secretariat.But “UN reform cannot be complete without also reforming the structure and working methods of the UN Security Council,” Mr. Gašparovic said, noting that Slovakia – currently a non-permanent Council member – has been actively engaged on the issue.The number of permanent and non-permanent members should increase, Germany and Japan deserve permanent seats and the so-called countries of the global South should also acquire more seats to reflect today’s changed geopolitical realities. 25 September 2007The range of today’s global challenges requires a stronger United Nations that is more representative, transparent and effective, Portugal’s Prime Minister told the General Assembly today, calling for reform of the world’s leading multilateral forum.
“We need to preserve the productivity and essential ecosystem functions of the oceans as a basis for a prosperous and sustainable future for all,” he told the Pacem in Maribus XXXIII International Conference on Oceans, held in Beijing, China.In a message delivered by Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs Patricia O’Brien, Mr. Ban noted the theme of this year’s Conference, “Oceans, Climate Change and Sustainable Development,” spotlights just how important oceans are and the many benefits that are derived from them.Oceans – which cover about two-thirds of the Earth’s surface – generate most of its oxygen, absorb carbon dioxide emissions, provide food and nutrients, regulate climate, and supply fishing and other marine resources for income.“Perhaps most significant is the role that oceans play in regulating the global climate – generating oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere,” said the Secretary-General.He pointed out that among those on the front lines of climate change are coastal communities, particularly people living in small island developing States. “Halting the decline of coastal ecosystems such as mangroves, salt marshes and seagrasses, can help to mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change while providing numerous social and economic benefits to hundreds of millions of people,” he said.As the world is becoming increasingly aware, he noted, the many benefits of the oceans to human well-being are not limitless and, in some cases, are in peril.Mr. Ban said that with so many people depending on the oceans, it is vital to pursue universal participation in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.Known as the world’s “constitution for the oceans,” the treaty provides the legal framework within which all activities in the oceans and seas must be carried out.In 2008 the General Assembly decided to make World Oceans Day, which was already celebrated by many countries, into an officially-recognized UN annual observance on 8 June to raise global awareness of the threats to the oceans. 3 September 2010Highlighting the centrality of the marine environment to human well-being, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today stressed the collective global responsibility to protect the world’s oceans.
18 September 2010Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commended the courage and determination of the men and women of Afghanistan for voting in today’s parliamentary elections. In a statement, Mr. Ban noted the high number of candidates seeking office, as well as the important role played by the nation’s civil society in observing the electoral process. More than 2,500 people, including some 400 women, competed for 249 seats in the Wolesi Jirga, or lower house of Afghanistan’s parliament. Mr. Ban praised the Afghan National Security Forces’ efforts to protect the people of Afghanistan during the democratic exercise, which took place in more than 5,000 polling centres across the country. “The Secretary-General notes that this election has taken place amid significant security challenges and condemns the reported acts of violence, expressing his condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives,” the statement said. Mr. Ban acknowledged the efforts of the leadership and staff of the Afghan electoral bodies, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) and the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC). He called on “all parties to use appropriate legal channels to file complaints and asks for patience as the electoral authorities complete the process in accordance with the law.” Earlier this week, Staffan de Mistura, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), stressed the importance of the measures being taken by the IEC to improve the electoral process, following last year’s presidential polls which were marred by fraud. “The electoral authorities have learned many lessons from the experience of last year, in particular in improving their systems to prevent massive fraud. These elections will not be perfect, but I am hopeful that they will be better than last year’s election,” he said during a visit with provincial leaders and tribal elders in the southern city of Kandahar.
They also discussed development of Buddha’s birthplace Lumbini and possibility of operating direct Nepal-Sri Lanka flights, among other issues, according to Acharya. The President thanked Senevirathna for his role in holding high-level bilateral meetings and maintain the friendly ties between two South Asian nations, the statement added. (Colombo Gazette) Nepal’s President Bidya Devi Bhandari has had talks with Sri Lanka’s envoy to Nepal WM Senevirathna on issues of mutual concern.Senevirathna paid a farewell call on President Bidya Devi Bhandari at the Sheetal Niwas, the Himalayan Times reported. During the meeting, issues of mutual concerns and cooperation were discussed, the President’s Office assistant spokesperson Dhruva Raj Acharya said in a statement today.
Its plan of action, called the “São Paulo Consensus,” said that despite the encouraging signs of growth in the South, the gap between developing and developed countries has continued to widen. It needed to focus on the plight of the least developed countries and using global trade to eradicate poverty. UNCTAD Secretary-General Rubens Ricupero, making his last speech to the Conference before his retirement, said UNCTAD must be used to help integrate the world’s poorest people into the global economy because it was one of the few forums where weak and strong nations could talk with one another straightforwardly about key human development concerns. Looking at the innovations of the session, he said it was the first time that a UN general debate had been broadcast live on the Internet. UNCTAD XI had addressed trade and poverty reduction, trade and gender and the role of creative industries – music, film, publishing and software production – in fostering development. In the creative industries, the poor had a great deal to contribute because of the richness of their cultures, Mr. Ricupero said. UNCTAD was proud of being the voice of the least developed countries, he said.
Readers unable to view the Soundcloud file above can click here to listen to the audio.Dear Brothers and Sisters,I offer a warm and affectionate greeting to the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors who have joined me for this, my last General Audience.Like Saint Paul, whose words we heard earlier, my heart is filled with thanksgiving to God who ever watches over his Church and her growth in faith and love, and I embrace all of you with joy and gratitude.During this Year of Faith, we have been called to renew our joyful trust in the Lord’s presence in our lives and in the life of the Church. I am personally grateful for his unfailing love and guidance in the eight years since I accepted his call to serve as the Successor of Peter.I am also deeply grateful for the understanding, support and prayers of so many of you, not only here in Rome, but also throughout the world.The decision I have made, after much prayer, is the fruit of a serene trust in God’s will and a deep love of Christ’s Church. I will continue to accompany the Church with my prayers, and I ask each of you to pray for me and for the new Pope.In union with Mary and all the saints, let us entrust ourselves in faith and hope to God, who continues to watch over our lives and to guide the journey of the Church and our world along the paths of history.I commend all of you, with great affection, to his loving care, asking him to strengthen you in the hope which opens our hearts to the fullness of life that he alone can give.To you and your families, I impart my blessing. POPE BENEDICT XVI has held his final public event before stepping down as pontiff, using his final general audience to further explain his reasons for deciding to step down.Thousands turned out at St Peter’s Square in Rome to mark the 85-year-old pope’s final public event, before he retires to his summer residence outside Rome tomorrow and ends his pontificate at 7pm tomorrow evening.The Wednesday morning general audience usually offers a platform for the pope to give lectures on the nature of Christianity – but today Benedict instead used the opportunity to elaborate on his reasons for his retirement.Benedict said he did not have the “strength of mind or body” to continue leading the Catholic Church’s 1.2 billion followers.“To love the church means also to have the courage to take difficult, painful decisions, always keeping the good of the church in mind, not oneself,” he said, further recalling the doubts he had about his ability to rise to the role when he was appointed pontiff in April 2005.“I have had moments of joy and light, but also moments that haven’t been easy … moments of turbulent seas and rough winds,” he added.At the conclusion of his remarks, Benedict toured the square in the ‘Popemobile’, greeting well-wishers in what amounted to his final public appearance as head of the Roman Catholic Church.Most of the 115 cardinals who will vote in next month’s conclave, appointing a successor to Benedict, were present for the audience – which had an expected attendance of about 50,000, but an actual turnout of nearly double that much.Tomorrow morning Benedict will hold a meeting with the cardinals, before flying to Castel Gandolfo – about 40 minutes away by road – to see out the last hours of his pontificate.At 8pm Roman time (7pm Irish time) the doors of the residence will close, and the Swiss Guards protecting him will stand down – their job of protecting the head of the Catholic Church over for the time being.In full: Pope Benedict XVI’s final address Read: Benedict changes rules to allow Conclave to start earlierExplainer: How is a new Pope chosen?
Who run the world? Girls who code.In hopes of encouraging the next generation of female coders, Google’s Made with Code initiative has released a new interactive project “for wonder women everywhere to add coding to their superpower toolkit.”Celebrating the release of Warner Bros.’ new Wonder Woman film—starring Gal Gadot as Diana, Princess of the Amazons—Google invites people (namely teenage girls) to code three scenes from the film using introductory principles like variables, sequences, loops, and conditionals.“Wonder Woman’s strength is more relevant today than ever,” Google Play’s Mathilde Cohen Solal wrote in a blog announcement. “Especially in the technology space, since girls are less likely than boys to be encouraged to pursue computer science and only 22 percent of gaming developers are women.”All three levels of coding take plenty of thought, patience, and effort; drag and drop the blocks into place, press “play,” and watch as Diana leaps, blocks, and lassos with ease.Get stuck? Press “Help” in the top right corner to see a “working example” (i.e. the correct answer). Then restart and learn for yourself, or simply move on to the next challenge. Just think: What would Wonder Woman do?Users can share their “coding superpower” with friends via social media, and try your hand at some other Made with Code project or step up your game with Code Studio, Scratch, and Mozilla Thimble.Before hitting the cinema, check out MovieBob’s review of Wonder Woman (spoiler: he liked it) and our Wonder Woman gift guide. And take a few minutes this weekend to learn the basics of coding with Princess Diana of Themyscira.As part of this collaboration, Google and Warner Bros. gave the gift of Wonder Woman to more than 100 teen girls from Los Angeles, who saw an advanced film screening, played the updated DC Legends game, and completed the new coding project.“We hope Wonder Woman’s message of empowerment inspired teen girls, and women, to build confidence in pursuing careers in computer science, engineering, gaming—or whatever their dreams may be,” Cohen Solal said. Stay on target 11 Groundbreaking Female Comic Book ArtistsToy Tuesday: 11 Coolest Toys of 2018
Problem Solvers with Jason Feifer Listen Now This story appears in the January 2010 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe » You probably have overheard these words: software as a service. You may even have nodded knowingly despite not knowing much more than that they’re more easily digestible as the acronym SaaS (rhymes with the thing that holds your evening martini).It’s pretty easy to get swept up in technology debates about what constitutes SaaS–is it the same as cloud computing or different? But you know what? You don’t need to know what it is; you just need to know what it does for your growing business. As for what it does, we’ll answer that question with another: What if you no longer had to spend thousands of dollars a year on communications gear, computer software and overall internal IT management?”SaaS can have the same effect that car leasing had in the auto industry,” says Siamak Farah, CEO of InfoStreet, which offers SaaS solutions to small businesses. InfoStreet offers SaaS in the form of a business management software platform, StreetSmart, that supports a variety of functions, including e-mail, conference calling, file sharing, customer relationship management, calendar tools, portal access, data synchronization, site administration and more. It’s a hosted platform requiring no new hardware or software.A SaaS platform has to have five attributes, Farah says. “It has to be fully managed and hosted; allow the customer recurring payments; be supported by a large-scale, secure multitenant infrastructure; support anytime, anywhere access; and can’t require specialized software to be installed. It really needs to work anywhere there’s a browser.”The benefits to the small-business owner include no upfront infrastructure cost, less risk of data security and reliability issues, and ubiquitous authorized access that the business owner can control.Chris Hubble, vice president of brand strategy at international market research firm DB5, likes the sound of that. Hubble says his San Marino, Calif., firm saves an average of $10,000 annually by having InfoStreet manage its e-mail, scheduling, data storage and IT maintenance needs versus buying its own storage servers and having an in-house IT guru. The reliability of the SaaS approach also helps DB5 save thousands of dollars more that it might otherwise spend on downtime resulting from communications and IT issues. And DB5 gains the potential brand appeal from an outsourced, automated system that helps it appear more like a corporate titan than a small business–key for a firm with big clients such as GE, AT&T and Girl Scouts of the USA.”It’s just a positive, cost-effective thing to do for your business,” Hubble says. “At my old company, we could never crack these IT issues, but here, with SaaS, it’s like night and day.” December 14, 2009 3 min read Hear from business owners and CEOs who went through a crippling business problem and came out the other side bigger and stronger.
UPS’ goal with this is to help meet its corporate renewable energy and carbon footprint goals, as well as to hopefully reap benefits in terms of vehicle operation efficiency, and the cost of maintenance (which should be far less using all-electric trucks).Featured Image: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images UPS will work with partner Workhorse, a battery-electric transportation technology company, to develop and deploy a fleet of 50 custom-built plug-in electric delivery trucks with zero emissions.The goal is to make trucks that cost as much to buy as do traditional fuel-based delivery vehicles — even without taking into account subsidies. The Workhorse-designed vehicles will be all-electric, and are designed to run on a single charge throughout a normal delivery day and then charge back up overnight.Workhorse says they’ll have a 100-mile range, which is a good fit for in-city routes, and the trucks will first enter testing in urban areas in various parts of the U.S., including Atlanta, Dallas and LA. The test will lead to fine-tuning, which will lead to a larger fleet deployment targeting 2019.
Related posts:Rebuilding the community of La Carpio through cultural education Meet Alicia Avilés, the perseverant immigrant leader of La Carpio’s cultural growth La Carpio’s cultural rebellion The Black side of the story: Afro-Costa Rican MC Huba Watson Part Three of a four-part series. Read Part One here and Part Two here.Is it possible for a single organization to change the face of a country’s toughest neighborhood? La Carpio, the name of Costa Rica’s oldest shantytown located in La Uruca, San José, is synonymous in the minds of many Costa Ricans with poverty and violent crime. In 2011, however, Alicia Avilés and Maris Stella Fernández launched a quest to change this when they founded the Integrated System of Art Education for Social Inclusion (SIFAIS), an NGO seeking to promote cultural growth in the neighborhood. In this four-part series, The Tico Times sets out to show how this non-traditional cultural education model is trying to beat the odds and help this vulnerable community strive for a better future.Through hard work and the combination of trust, constancy, tenderness, and the “positive madness” that leads project leaders and participants to take on big challenges, the Integrated System of Art Education for Social Inclusion (SIFAIS) has been rebuiliding the La Carpio shantytown in San José through cultural education. One of the key factors for the sociocultural construction of the community has been the volunteers who, together with the people of La Carpio, are at the heart of the program.Since day one in 2011, SIFAIS has been working with a wide range of professionals seeking to share their knowledge with La Carpio, a community that has an approximate population of 51,000 people. To date, a total of 137 volunteers and 350 other collaborators have served the 950 community members enrolled in SIFAIS’ classes and workshops in music, athletics and general education.Ana Victoria Carrillo and Sandra González are among the 137 volunteers who have been helping the community. Carrillo is a university student studying photography, biology, and sustainable development, and González works as a business administrator at the finance department of a multinational company. Both Carrillo and González started volunteering in SIFAIS as assistants.Carrillo has taught art and contemporary dance, and González has been teaching the basics of reading music to children from ages four to eight.See also: Meet Alicia Avilès, the perseverant leader of La Carpio’s cultural growth“I’ve been teaching in La Carpio for three years,” González told The Tico Times. “I started out as an assistant with a friend who plays the violin, but then she moved to Singapore for two years. She had taught me all the basics of music reading, so I was capable of teaching the children as well: how to read musical notes, what a staff is, the durations of notes.“For the past three years I’ve been going every Saturday to La Carpio, and those children receive me with open arms and a smile,” she said. Sandra González (woman in white blouse) teaches children the basis of music reading every Saturday at the Cueva de Luz. (Courtesy of Sandra González)These volunteer efforts have begun to change paradigms in a community in which the youngest generations are “supposed” to repeat the cycle of poverty. SIFAIS provides an opportunity for young people to set new goals for themselves and strive to improve.“At the very beginning I taught a four year-old child named Steven,” González remembered. “When he began he had difficulties with learning the notes, but his mother always came to class with him and would help him study at home. He became the student in the class who knew everything. Now he’s seven years old and plays the violin. It’s so beautiful to watch him always carrying his violin everywhere. This person has a very different future written ahead of him now because we gave him the passion of music.“We definitely came to break those cycles in which their grandmother is someone who asked for money on the street, their father is a street guard, and consequently [the kids think they] should repeat that. When they drop out of high school they have to go to work because they think that’s the life they deserve. Their destiny is written according to the cycle they’re living, but suddenly SIFAIS appears and gives an artistic education that breaks the cycle. It’s there where the child decides that he or she has to finish high school in order to get to college and complement it with violin lessons. The children themselves have said it: ‘the shooting sounds have been replaced by violins, trumpets and drums’,” González told The Tico Times.See also: Rebuilding the community of La Carpio through cultural educationAna Victoria Carrillo says her own experiences as a volunteer have shown her how that attitude shift has resulted in a greater sense of dignity on the part of participants. Ana Victoria Carrillo has been part of the volunteering team since SIFAIS began in 2011. (Courtesy of Ana Victoria Carrillo)“All of these cultural activities are teaching children discipline and to do things with love. It has also taught them to be themselves, to know what they like and what they don’t like. It has improved their self-esteem a lot, because they find that passion that makes them forget for a while the reality in which they live,” Carrillo said. “From there they learn to have hope; to have energy; to move on and continue experimenting the loving craziness of life.”This crazy passion Carrillo refers to has been developing rapidly in Brandon Jiménez’s youthful spirit. Jiménez is a 16-year-old boy from La Carpio who is in 11th grade at the Liceo de Costa Rica; he enjoys playing the flute with La Carpio’s symphonic orchestra and practicing judo at the Cueva de Luz. Since the age of 12, he has been participating at the different workshops and classes offered by SIFAIS.“You spend a lot of time with your bandmates and friends. This has helped me to get to meet new people, become a better musician and travel to different places in Costa Rica,” Jiménez told The Tico Times.During the past four years Jiménez has spent going to SIFAIS he has noticed the change that the organization has created in the community. Brando Jiménez (blue) competed on judo tournament at the BN Arenas. (Courtesy of SIFAIS)“Before, there were a lot of people who were assaulting others and stealing their belongings. Ever since SIFAIS came here, these people have changed. They’ve been going to classes and the delinquency [rates] have been disappearing throughout these four years,” Jiménez said.Jiménez has come to embrace the constant discipline required for both the flute and judo, and says he appreciates the time that volunteers have dedicated to his community.“I have learned that through art you can help others, and the volunteers have taught me that I can teach others. They really want you to learn about the instrument or sport so that you can pass that on to others and to always be consistent,” Jiménez explained. Brandon Jiménez loves playing the flute and has developed discipline through constant practice. (Courtesy of SIFAIS)So has SIFAIS succeeded in its goal of helping young people set their sights on bigger life goals?Here’s one answer: Jiménez dreams of one day becoming an engineer or architect, continuing to play the flute to become a better musician, and competing in the Olympic Games.In our next and final story in this series, coming tomorrow, Jan. 13, learn how SIFAIS and La Carpio have evolved and are preparing themselves for the future. Facebook Comments
The charred body of a man was found in a burning car in Limassol, police said on Tuesday.According to a report, police were informed at 6am that a car with a man in it was burning in the Monagrouli-Asgata area of Limassol.Police and the fire service arrived at the scene and extinguished the fire, and found a charred body inside.No information has yet been announced regarding the causes of the fire, although police said initial investigations ruled foul play was an unlikely scenario.Police sources also said that the man is possibly the 61-year-old owner of a furnace, located near the scene, but this has not yet been confirmed.“In the car a person was located, charred, whose details are not known. The details (of the body) will be identified with the DNA method,” the head of the Limassol CID, Ioannis Soteriades said.He added that the car was parked right next to the furnace.The family of the 61-year-old believe it’s him, state broadcaster CyBC reported.The 61-year-old was staying by himself in the same area as the furnace, CyBC said, and was only firing up the furnace to make charcoal, once or twice per month, mainly to keep his grandchildren busy when they visited him.The car was only 10 centimetres from the furnace and the driver’s door was open, CyBC said.His family, CyBC said, believe that the car was parked higher up, but that as its brakes are not working properly, it might have slid backwards and caught fire.The 61-year-old reportedly had the habit of pushing the furnace with his car, to create oxygen and rekindle the fire, which is another possibility being investigated.It is believed that he had tried to move his burning car away from the furnace but was engulfed by the flames. You May LikeFigLeaf Beta AppHow to Become Fully Anonymous Online in Less Than 3 Minutes? Better safe than sorryFigLeaf Beta AppUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoCity BeautyDo This To Fix Sagging Jowls Without SurgeryCity BeautyUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboola
A TALA resident is appealing to local authorities to ensure the removal of a number of metal shipping containers found close to his home, which he says store petrol-driven equipment and pose a serious threat to life. He has even written to the president.“I am particularly concerned as there was a fire in this field just last year which quickly got out of control and caused extensive damage. The containers then appeared on the field a couple of months later,” said Tala resident Jeffrey Judge.Judge and wife Lyn said they are both worried that the summer heat coupled with the building up of petrol fumes inside the container could lead to an explosion. Lyn said that if a similar fire occurred now, the outcome could be fatal.“When a fire spreads up to your house and burns your fence as this fire did last year with us, it really hits home. Now we have these containers full of equipment filled with petrol on the field in front, I am very concerned,” she said.Judge said that he has now written an appeal to the president to take his complaint seriously, as after months of trying to get the large industrial containers moved, nothing has happened. He said he is very concerned that petrol fumes may be building up inside the containers which are exposed to intense sun and heat on a daily basis.The villa owner said that as no action has yet been taken to remove the industrial containers, despite assurances by the district administration that the owner was given notice to remove them, he has now written to the president, the fire services and the local community board, the ministry of the interior, the mayor of Paphos and the CTO for help. He said that the situation could quite literally, blow up at any time.“We were getting very concerned as the temperature is going up and the containers are in direct sunlight all day long, so we wrote to them all to express our concerns and also that out that under health and safety regulations they have the power to remove the containers without the involving the owner.”The couple also pointed out that an explosion in a residential area would have far reaching consequences for both residents and holidaymakers, as there are the many rental properties in the area.Judge said that he believes that the three large metal containers and metal shed all house equipment or metal drums, and at least one of the drums contains ‘hazardous material.’He said: “One afternoon there was an awful smell of gasoline and my wife and I realised that someone had opened a container and it was evident that there was petrol-driven equipment being stored. I am fully aware of the dangers and health and safety requirements of storing ‘flammable liquids’ their ventilation and the affect heat can have on them. I called the fire brigade who attended, but as the containers were locked they were unable to access them.”Following this, a meeting took place which was attended by the owner and the fire department, but no satisfactory action was taken, he said.In December 2015, the couple received a letter from the Paphos district office which confirmed that the owner had been told to remove the containers within three months or legal action would be taken. The containers were never moved, he said.“I have now learnt that the district office extended the removal of the containers until September or October as the owner has a sick relative. They seem more concerned with this than the safety of possibly 50-plus Tala residents in the surrounding area.”Judge said that the couple has a real fear that the containers may explode, as this has happened in other countries in the past. A fire could easily take hold, he said, and debris could be catapulted in all directions causing injury and possibly death.“I have advised all of the authorities of the risk involved and provided reports of previous incidents where containers holding petrol-driven equipment have exploded. In Canada a container was ventilated every day according to regulations, but when a fire broke out, the external heat from the fire caused the fumes from two handsaws holding very little fuel to explode. The debris travelled 300 metres, a fireman was killed by the flying shrapnel.”He said that this is not an isolated case and that more countries are introducing stricter regulations in regards to the use of old shipping containers and where and how they should be stored.“It is only July, we still have August ahead of us with more searing heat and even drier ground conditions. Is it going to take another major incident to make people realise that ignoring the facts does not make the problem go away.”Tala councillor Cathi Delaney said that she supports the residents’ complaints and their concerns at having to live with a ‘potential fire bomb’ in front of their property.“The district office is pursuing the owner as he doesn’t have planning permission for the containers, but there should be concerns from the fire department, and there aren’t,” she said.You May LikeInsured Nation – Auto Insurance QuotesNew Rule in Rowland Heights, California Leaves Drivers FumingInsured Nation – Auto Insurance QuotesUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 minute and see why everyone is addictedPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GameUndo Concern over falling tourism numbersUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoPensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
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the Post reports. In the 182-member Assembly, Gujarat Assembly Secretary DM Patel had said the NOTA option will be printed on ballot papers to be used in the Rajya Sabha polls. wicked and unjust agenda that will not stick. I will first of all say that we are having a pseudo-military president now,” Priebus said.
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