CaribDirect.com https://www.caribdirect.com Connecting the Caribbean to the world Thu, 22 Oct 2020 05:19:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.2 28571875 Covid-19 and your poor neighbor https://www.caribdirect.com/covid-19-and-your-poor-neighbor/ https://www.caribdirect.com/covid-19-and-your-poor-neighbor/#respond Thu, 22 Oct 2020 05:19:22 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44846 The pandemic is driving poverty and wealth inequality Thirty years from today in the 2050s, a new world powered by robotics, artificial intelligence, and quantum physics will be upon us. In that future, if a person incidentally ventures into a virtual library, looks for a digital history book on the 2020s, the reader will surely […]

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Resident columnist Dickson Igwe

The pandemic is driving poverty and wealth inequality

Thirty years from today in the 2050s, a new world powered by robotics, artificial intelligence, and quantum physics will be upon us.

In that future, if a person incidentally ventures into a virtual library, looks for a digital history book on the 2020s, the reader will surely come upon a narrative, ‘’ THE GREAT PANDEMIC.’’

The story may describe how people around the world gave a heartwarming welcome to the year 2020. People celebrated the incoming year at squares, parties, and cathedrals, in New York, London, Lagos, Cape Town, Sydney, and Tokyo. 2020 arrived peaceably and joyfully on January 1 in most countries.

However on that January 1st early morn an uninvited and invisible guest tightly stuck to the New Year. This was a highly contagious, toxic, and dangerous parasite: a deadly virus. It clung to its hosts unwilling to leave. The name given to the virus was Covid-19.

The virus brought on respiratory infections and physical anomalies in humans. It was transferred to humans from animals. The virus killed millions and infected many more millions.

Covid-19 eventually and negatively impacted the world economy, driving it down to the tune of trillions and trillions of dollars.

Now, inequality between rich and poor, powerful and vulnerable, and the people stuck in between, has existed for millennia.

That wealth inequality is overt in a society such as these Virgin Islands. The spectrum ranges from the likes of the super wealthy like Sir Richard Branson, Henri Jarecki, and Larry Page, who live invisibly on these islands; to the poor who live hand to mouth, on handouts from charity, family, and friends.

Henry George Jarecki is a German-born American academic, psychiatrist, and entrepreneur. Photo courtesy Alcherton

The world went into lockdown in March 2020 when it was clear that shutting down society was the one sure way of controlling the spread of the contagion. That shutdown was complete in most places, eerily turning great cities of the world into ‘ghost towns.’

The lockdown period changed the lives of millions. The better off were able to spend time with family. These did not feel the pinch of lost income.

People, especially workers in travel and tourism, a mainstay for employment in the BVI and elsewhere lost jobs and livelihoods. They were unable to earn the accustomed income.

It was certainly not well for the poor and unemployed who lost income, jobs, and homes, and faced brutal setback.

Lockdown forced residents to stay at home. Businesses went under and shut for good.

The people at the top of the wealth pyramid were unscathed. In fact by some cruel trick, billionaires and stockholders in technology became wealthier as the world became a virtual marketplace as a result of COVID.

Towards the bottom of the pyramid the adversity and suffering increased greatly. Migrant workers, daily wage earners, waitresses, barmen, small businessmen and women, cleaners, taxi drivers, and so on and so forth, were severely impacted. These workers were driven into poverty and great suffering.

The people at the middle of the pyramid, for example, government workers, and middle managers in private firms, were affected, but not as drastically as those at the bottom of the pyramid.

The world of pandemic recession will get worse, sadly.

Employment is a lagging indicator of economic recovery. So when the world begins to recover, probably in early 2022, after a vaccine for COVID is widely available, only then will investor and business confidence return.

Consumer confidence appears after investor and business confidence increases. When people start to spend- aggregate demand increases- then shut businesses will reopen, and managers and business owners will begin to invest in equipment and stock, and hire workers again.

The world economy will resume normality and growth. When that will happen? Only God knows. 

Connect with Dickson Igwe on Facebook and Twitter

 

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Who will deliver the structural changes the pandemic has highlighted? https://www.caribdirect.com/who-will-deliver-the-structural-changes-the-pandemic-has-highlighted/ https://www.caribdirect.com/who-will-deliver-the-structural-changes-the-pandemic-has-highlighted/#respond Wed, 21 Oct 2020 05:33:21 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44843 Who will deliver the structural changes the pandemic has highlighted? A timely and comprehensive policy paper produced by the Ramphal Centre has set out the structural changes required to deliver Caribbean post-COVID economic recovery. Welcoming the study, David Jessop, questions however whether the region still has the unity of purpose to deliver what it recommends.  […]

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David Jessop – Author of The View from Europe

Who will deliver the structural changes the pandemic has highlighted?

A timely and comprehensive policy paper produced by the Ramphal Centre has set out the structural changes required to deliver Caribbean post-COVID economic recovery. Welcoming the study, David Jessop, questions however whether the region still has the unity of purpose to deliver what it recommends. 

A little earlier this month, the University of the West Indies’ Shridath Ramphal Centre, published a policy paper that called for a new, integrated regional approach to post-COVID Caribbean economic recovery. It asked in effect whether the region should seek to re-embrace the ‘old normal’ or seek solutions to the existing and new economic challenges that the pandemic has highlighted.

The study, ‘Trading Our Way to Recovery During COVID-19: Recommendations for CARICOM Countries’ describes in its 96 pages the multiple and long overdue structural reforms that are needed if post COVID the Caribbean is to successfully recover and compete in what is likely to be a much changed world.

It represents, according to Neil Paul, the Ramphal Centre’s Director, the thoughts and analysis of young Caribbean researchers who are using the opportunity of COVID-19 to recommend new ways of confronting these topics in a Caribbean context.

The document’s authors argue that in the short-term trade remains the best avenue for economic recovery, can strengthen critical sectors, and make economies competitive, sustainable, and inclusive. They suggest that in the longer term, trade policy can be used to sustainably build economic resilience and diversification.

Neil Paul, the Ramphal Centre’s Director. Photo courtesy Shridath Ramphal Centre

They variously propose a comprehensive approach to industrial policy that involves regulatory reform, innovative linkages across sectors, and the involvement of government, academia, and the private sector in the identification of new higher value-added opportunities. Their report also recommends a changed approach to agricultural development and food security, much greater attention being paid to micro, small and medium sized enterprises, and a new focus on investment. In the case of the latter, the document recommends accelerating and broadening existing proposals for the creation of a single regulatory CSME investment space in order to mitigate the constraints of the Anglophone Caribbean’s small geographic and population size.

The report’s authors also argue that greatly enhanced connectivity and e-commerce should be integral to the region’s post-COVID-19 economic recovery. They recommend ‘ubiquitous and affordable’ internet and telecommunications services, the development of digital skills and entrepreneurship and makes other recommendations, relating for example to the urgent need to develop digital payment solutions.

The document is at one and the same time, both stimulating and disheartening.

It is positive in that it clearly describes the principal long standing economic policy issues holding back the region’s development and suggests several new initiatives that might be pursued. By placing them all in a post-COVID recovery context the report effectively challenges governments and the private sector to address each of its forty-four policy recommendations as a part of a coherent deliverable recovery package.

It is disheartening because much of what it says should have been addressed decades ago when the region’s financial capacity and the will to deliver regional solutions was much greater.

Since the global financial crisis of 2007/8, resolution of the region’s structural problems has become more difficult as around that time most if not all Caribbean nations began to take an a la carte approach to regional integration.

This has made it hard to see who exactly is going to pick up and run with the Ramphal Centre’s important recommendations. While there will be many external agencies who will love its coherence and see it as a basis to fund more granular studies, the authors have virtually nothing to say about who they believe has the strength or influence to drive their proposals forward, and just as importantly who is able to rapidly implement the common sense solutions they propose.

As such, the danger is that like the much broader Golding report, or Sir Shridath’s ‘Time for Action’ – his largely set aside now three-decades-old proposal for the comprehensive reform of regional governance – this economic policy document could well become just one more testimonial to the Caribbean’s outstanding thinking and analysis, but practical inability to deliver.

Clearly delivery cannot come from the CARICOM Secretariat which absent having an executive role and the transfer of sovereignty from governments, can only ever be as good as Caribbean Heads willingness to act, see implementation through to the bitter end, and determine accountability.

Despite its profound sense of cultural unity, the Caribbean is a fragmented region in the process of dividing into economic interest groups with on the horizon the probability of new configurations based on complimentary production chains and other synergies.

For example, it is quite possible that Guyana, Suriname, Trinidad and a post-Maduro Venezuela could form one powerful oil and mineral rich integrated economic community, while Barbados could well become a hub driving the tourism economy of much of the Eastern Caribbean. In the case of Jamaica it has the size and capacity to become a standalone high value services centre for the Americas, and could find other synergies with some of its larger northern Caribbean neighbours, while pursuing closer economic integration with the US.

This is not a reason to give up on finding regional solutions but to ask CARICOM’s younger generation and in particular its impressive cadre of highly educated women and men in the public and private sector and in academia how they envisage the regional economic thinking and integration they seek, being delivered politically?

When the focus is on national survival and recovery, most governments initially seek more easily delivered domestic solutions and external support rather than the consensus building and long-term attention needed to deliver regional solutions; particularly if faced with intra-regional obstinacy, bureaucracy and uncompromising national self-interest.

Despite this and as the academics at the Ramphal Centre point out, the pandemic offers an opportunity to rethink the Caribbean economic model, and to explore alternative ways in which smallness and fragmentation can be overcome. There is no shortage of viable solutions. The issue is who can deliver regionally the long overdue structural changes that COVID-19 has highlighted?

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Amanda says ‘Patience Has Its Benefits’ https://www.caribdirect.com/amanda-says-patience-has-its-benefits/ https://www.caribdirect.com/amanda-says-patience-has-its-benefits/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 08:48:05 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44840 Who remembers the impetuous child Veruca Salt who sang the song ‘I want it Now’ from the film ‘Charlie & The Chocolate Factory’? Her demands for wanting the golden goose led to her destruction and disposal in a rubbish shoot. The microwave once used to heat food, can now cook food i.e. a jacket potato […]

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Lifestyle Columnist, Amanda Alexander

Who remembers the impetuous child Veruca Salt who sang the song ‘I want it Now’ from the film ‘Charlie & The Chocolate Factory’? Her demands for wanting the golden goose led to her destruction and disposal in a rubbish shoot. The microwave once used to heat food, can now cook food i.e. a jacket potato in 10 minutes, and now has become a dependable substitute for the conventional oven which takes nearly two hours to cook  a crispy skinned, fluffy textured potato. We can see from the above scenarios that impatience leads to hellish curses, while patience brings heavenly blessings!

I was the queen of impatience, like Veruca Salt I wanted and demanded everything immediately. Needless to say my impatience led to a lot of failures as I did not allow myself to be patient with the process of time for everything to come together organically.

What does the word patience mean? Cambridge Dictionary defines it as “the ability to wait, or to continue doing something despite difficulties, or to suffer without complaining or becoming annoyed:¹  The bible urges us “But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing”.² Having patience has many benefits as it allows you to see yourself what needs to change. Furthermore, patience gives an eye view of what the other person or situation is really about, leaving you with the choice whether to engage or not. Another benefit of patience is that you’re given the opportunity to have deeper compassion and understanding not only for yourself but others.

Photo courtesy unsplash.com

If you’re having to exercise patience in a relationship it gives you time to see your flaws, where you are going wrong and are thus able to address your issues. You’ll also love the other person and understand what they are going through from their perspective, treat them with kindness rather than becoming annoyed or complaining about them because in your view they’re not meeting your needs, as 1 Corinthians 13:4 says true love is patient³.

Next time you want to be impatient ask yourself what do you really want out of life? Do not destroy your life like Veruca and don’t set your mindset to the timescale of the microwave. If you’re a Christian wait on God with patience, don’t grumble and complain but remain thankful. I’m pleased to say I’m now a lady who now has patience with God and herself and loves life. There’s protection in patience so stay there until the process is over you will not regret it.

Question:

  1. What difficult situation or person is causing you to to complain or be annoyed?
  2. Because they were not meeting your demands now you were cruel or kind to them?
  3. Did you complain about the person to your friends and family, if so how do you now feel?

Until next time, remember you are beautiful and wonderfully made – With love Amanda x

Amanda Alexander is the founder of Elect Lady Ministries & Amanda Alexander Productions All rights reserved ©
Disclaimer: Readers are advised that the views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author, and not necessarily to CaribDirect Multi-Media Ltd. 

¹ https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/patience?q=Patience

² https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=James+1%3A4-8&version=KJV

³ https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20Corinthians%2013%3A4-7&version=NIV

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Absolutely Caribbean unlocking the potential of the Caribbean https://www.caribdirect.com/absolutely-caribbean-unlocking-the-potential-of-the-caribbean/ https://www.caribdirect.com/absolutely-caribbean-unlocking-the-potential-of-the-caribbean/#respond Sat, 17 Oct 2020 16:16:14 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44833 BARBADOS, 15th October 2020 – The Caribbean Export Development Agency (i.e. Carib-Export) has announced the launch of its first virtual expo event named ‘’Absolutely Caribbean, unlocking the profit potential of the Caribbean’. Taking place on 17th and 18th November 2020, the event will bring together around 50 producers from across the region to showcase some of the best products that the Caribbean has to offer. “We’re really excited to […]

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BARBADOS, 15th October 2020 – The Caribbean Export Development Agency (i.e. Carib-Export) has announced the launch of its first virtual expo event named ‘’Absolutely Caribbean, unlocking the profit potential of the Caribbean’.

Taking place on 17th and 18th November 2020, the event will bring together around 50 producers from across the region to showcase some of the best products that the Caribbean has to offer.

We’re really excited to be organising our first virtual expo. We have seen a growing trend for Caribbean food, beverages and natural products across Europe in the last few years which presents a real opportunity for us.  In the UK alone, Caribbean food is now estimated to be worth £97m1 with the number of Caribbean restaurants in the last year having grown by 144%2,” comments Dr. Damie Sinanan, Manager of Competitiveness and Export Promotion, Carib-Export.

Attendees will have the chance to book slots to meet with producers from a variety of categories including natural food products, sauces and condiments; rum & spirits, neutraceuticals and plant-based cosmetics.  There will also be a presentation by consumer goods and retail experts to discuss the latest insights on these fast-moving consumer goods within the UK.

Shaun and Craig McAnuff. Photo courtesy Amazon UK

Carib-Export has partnered with Shaun and Craig McAnuff of Original Flava for the event who have found great success with their Caribbean food and lifestyle platform and recently released their first cookbook of authentic Jamaican recipes.  With an increase in demand for Caribbean sauces and condiments across Europe, the duo will host a live session to show how versatile these products are, including a cooking demonstration.

The event is also supported by the West Indies Rum & Spirit Producer’s Association (WIRSPA), who represent distillers’ associations from across the ACP Caribbean3 and will be hosting a session on premium alcoholic drinks from the Caribbean in collaboration with the Rum and Spirits Academy of Europe.

The online event is a joint venture between Carib-Export, the European Commission and the German International Development Agency (GIZ), and has been launched off the back of a successful three-day trade show and conference which took place in Germany last year.

For more information about the event and to register, please visit  –http://expo.absolutelycaribbean.com/about.html

Foot notes:

[1] Grocery – IRI December 2017

[2] CGA August 2019

[3] ACP stands for ‘Africa, Caribbean and Pacific’. The ACP Caribbean states are the countries that are signatories of the Lomé Convention signed in 1975. This was superseded by the Cotonou Agreement in June 2000.

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Kinlaw Joins Caribbean Athletes in the NFL https://www.caribdirect.com/kinlaw-joins-caribbean-athletes-in-the-nfl/ Thu, 15 Oct 2020 08:22:07 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44829 Despite how popular American football is in the United States and Canada, there’s little representation in the Caribbean and Latin American sports worlds. The US’s National Football League (NFL), on the other hand, is well known abroad. In addition to the NFL’s International Series, which sees the league play games abroad in countries like Mexico […]

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Despite how popular American football is in the United States and Canada, there’s little representation in the Caribbean and Latin American sports worlds. The US’s National Football League (NFL), on the other hand, is well known abroad.

Photo courtesy Unsplash.com

In addition to the NFL’s International Series, which sees the league play games abroad in countries like Mexico and the United Kingdom, there’s also plenty of movement into the US in terms of players.

In fact, the NFL, along with other major leagues like the National Basketball Association (NBA) and Major League Baseball (MLB), feature diverse lists of international athletes. The NFL, in particular, features names like Osi Umenyiora (of Ghana and the UK), Ezekiel Ansah (of Ghana), and Tamba Hali (of Liberia).

There are also plenty of top talents that hail from the Caribbean, including this year’s number twelve pick from the NFL Draft: Javon Kinlaw of Trinidad and Tobago. Kinlaw is undergoing his first season in the league with the San Francisco 49ers.

Kinlaw Heads West 

Kinlaw has two of the top requirements for the making of a star NFL athlete: size and agility. After immigrating to Washington DC with his mother and two siblings, he took an interest in the American sport.

Given his size, it was an easy fit that allowed him to develop his technical ability alongside the brute strength it takes to be a great defensive player. After spending one year at a junior college, he transferred to the University of South Carolina where he played every game of his starting season as a defensive tackle.

Earlier this year, he made a transition to the big leagues after signing a four-year rookie contract with the San Francisco 49ers as the overall twelfth draft pick. Kinlaw will need to prove himself as a lineman with the 49ers, who lost last season’s Super Bowl to the Kansas City Chiefs.

At the moment, the 49ers are treading water in the middle of the pack, but NFL betting odds for this season could shift in favor of the 49ers as post-season play approaches. In other words, Kinlaw landed a prime position with the west coast team—but that doesn’t mean the hard work is up for the young player.

From 2017 to 2019, prior to his NFL start, Kinlaw performed well as part of the South Carolina Gamecocks football squad. He earned the attention of top NFL recruiters with a strong tackle record, which he’ll need to now replicate with the 49ers.

Photo courtesy unsplash.com

Joining Top Caribbean Talent 

The list of successful NFL players hailing from the Caribbean on rosters today is short and sweet. Caribbean players are known for bringing high energy, a positive attitude, and more than a few interesting end zone dances (see: Victor Cruz’s salsa moves).

They’re also fiercely proud of their Caribbean heritage and make an effort to let their identities be known (see: Patrick Chung’s tattoos). Still, despite Kinlaw’s successful jump to the big leagues, he’ll need to make a few waves before his name is added alongside those like Pierre Garçon and Ramon Harewood.

Garçon was born in West Palm Beach, Florida to recently-immigrated Haitian parents. Originally, he made waves in the athletic world playing both soccer and football. However, he ultimately pursued a college career in football with Norwich University in Vermont.

After a few transfers in college, Garçon graduated to the NFL. In 2008, he was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts. After three years with the Colts, he moved on to the Washington Redskins, where he made his fame as the NFL receptions leader in 2013.

Ramon Harewood hails from Barbados. He moved to the States in 2006 to attend Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. After graduating, he was signed to the Baltimore Ravens with a three-year contract.

Unfortunately, a string of injuries shortened Harewood’s time in the NFL. Following his move to the Ravens, double knee surgery left him on the injured roster for multiple seasons. Since his short-lived stint with the Denver Broncos in 2014, Harewood hasn’t returned to the NFL.

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Five Simple Food Tips for Better Health https://www.caribdirect.com/five-simple-food-tips-for-better-health/ Tue, 13 Oct 2020 06:33:14 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44825 Five Simple Food Tips for Better Health As part of Public Health England’s (PHE) Better Health campaign, which encourages adults to eat better, lose weight and get active, we speak to registered Dietitian and member of the British Dietetic Association (BDA)Shola Oladipo who shares her five simple food tips for better health. 1.Become portion aware In our […]

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Shola Oladipo

Five Simple Food Tips for Better Health

As part of Public Health England’s (PHE) Better Health campaign, which encourages adults to eat better, lose weight and get active, we speak to registered Dietitian and member of the British Dietetic Association (BDA)Shola Oladipo who shares her five simple food tips for better health.

1.Become portion aware

In our culture serving large food portions is often a sign of love and generosity. And whilst this act of care may satisfy and be pleasing to our stomachs – it does little for our long-term health.

Being portion aware is particularly important, as having larger portions than we need can cause us to overeat and become overweight or obese. To maintain a healthy body weight, we must control our portions.  This means only eating when we are hungry and ensuring our plates at mealtimes are balanced with the three main food groups – protein, carbohydrates, and vegetables.   Swapping your usual plate or bowl for one that’s smaller in size can reduce the helping of food and prevent overeating. Most people feel just as full having eaten from a smaller dish as from a large one.

Shola says – ‘I find the following guides helpful when working with people who are trying to lose weight’. See the pictures below for examples of portion control for weight loss, and for weight maintenance:

 

2.Drink lots of water

Water is essential for life; and since our bodies are about 60% water it is important for us to drink plenty of water every day. Water helps our bodies to function effectively – this includes our kidneys, our blood, our brain and even our bowels too.

Drinking this amount can sound quite daunting, but it is definitely achievable once you get into the habit. Aim to drink water throughout the day – start with a drink of water in the morning, followed by one mid-morning, drink midday, mid-afternoon, and in the evening.

Some people manage their daily water intake by drinking from a refillable bottle – find what works for you. In case you are forgetful, try setting an alarm on your mobile phone to help to remind you to drink.

3.Understanding Carbs

There are three types of carbohydrates – sugar, starch and fibre.

1.Sugar: We need to eat less of this type of carbohydrate.

They are the added sugars found in fizzy drinks, chocolates, cakes and biscuits; as well as snacks like doughnuts, puff-puff and buns. Added sugars are in breakfast cereals and some flavoured yogurts. Sugars in honey, syrup, unsweetened fruit juices also fall in this category –we need to eat less of them.

2.Starch or ‘starchy carbs’ are an important part of a balanced diet. They provide us with energy, vitamins and minerals. In African and Caribbean diets, we tend to eat quite large

carbohydrate portions in the form of white rice, pasta, bread, cassava, noodles, yam and green bananas. Our rich food heritage means that some of our most popular traditional dishes are rich in carbohydrates. We can still enjoy these foods simply by reducing the carbohydrate portion. Eating too much starchy carbs, can mean we’re having too many calories – and having too many calories can cause weight gain and lead to obesity. 

3.Fibre – this type of carbohydrate is found in plants. It includes our fruits, vegetables, beans and pulses – that is foods like lentils and kidney beans. Wholegrains also fall into this group too and therefore you can have starchy carbs which are also whole grain versions such as: brown rice, wholemeal bread or wholemeal noodles.

In summary, we can enjoy our carbohydrates as part of a healthy diet by eating smaller portions and eating the wholegrain versions which are high in fibre, which help us to feel full. 

4.Only eat when you are hungry

Food plays an important role in our community. From birthdays, weddings, festivals or family ‘get togethers’ – much of our gatherings involve cooking or eating. As lovely as it sounds – having food around us all the time can make us prone to eating when we are not hungry. Wasting food can also be a taboo in our culture, and often we are guilty of overeating to avoid waste.

Jollof,Rice,Dome,For,Nigerian,Ghanaian,Food,Concept.,Wolof.,West

 

Eating when not hungry has a significant effect on our health and can lead to poor eating habits, and eventually overweight and obesity. The weight in this case tends to add up over time, you often don’t notice it, but it catches up with you.

A great tip is to have set mealtimes and avoid too much snacking where possible. If you do need a snack, first of all try drinking water, as often we confuse hunger and thirst. After drinking pause and decide whether you are truly hungry, if so, have a small piece of fruit. Aim to distinguish between eating because food is ‘there’, and real hunger.

5. Fruit and Vegetables

Fruit and vegetables contain vitamins, minerals and fibre – all of which are needed for good health. African and Caribbean diets include a variety of fruit and vegetables, many of these are available in markets and specialist ethnic stores. Aim for a variety of five portions per day of fruit and vegetables (this doesn’t include starchy carbohydrates). It is fine if you have fresh, frozen or tinned fruit or vegetables – it all counts towards your five a day. Vegetables are quite low in calories, so it is helpful to have plenty of these on your plate to fill you up – remember to steam or cook with very little oil.

Research shows that adequate intake of fruit and vegetables can help protect you from diseases such as heart disease and some cancers. They can also help you to avoid constipation.

Fruits are also great for desserts, or snacks. With a few exceptions, most fruit and vegetables keep well in the freezer – this is helpful if you do bulk shopping and need to store it for longer. Fruit can keep a bit longer if you store it in the refrigerator instead of a fruit bowl.

The Better Health campaign provides a variety of free tools and apps to help you become more active and make healthier food choices. This includes the new FREE 12-Week NHS Weight Loss Plan, which helps people eat better and learn skills to prevent weight gain.

Visit nhs.uk/betterhealth to start leading a healthier lifestyle today.

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National Adoption Week 12th Oct. Black adoption https://www.caribdirect.com/national-adoption-week-12th-oct-black-adoption/ Mon, 12 Oct 2020 06:41:05 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44819 In the midst of a pandemic, adoption is firmly in the hearts of our communities. Results from a recent survey show that black people have positive and altruistic views around adoption as a new campaign urges potential black adopters to come forward. It is widely known in black communities that informal adoption is part and […]

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Bishop Joe Aldred, broadcaster and writer

In the midst of a pandemic, adoption is firmly in the hearts of our communities.

Results from a recent survey show that black people have positive and altruistic views around adoption as a new campaign urges potential black adopters to come forward.

It is widely known in black communities that informal adoption is part and parcel of the fabric of our communities; we raise and nurture children that are not our biological children as if they were. Now new data from the cross sector National Adoption Recruitment Steering Group reflects this truth, showing that black communities have positive and altruistic views around adoption, with 80% stating that they have either adopted, considered or would consider adopting a child in the future. The data coincides with the launch of the first National Adoption Recruitment campaign, an initiative urging people who are considering adoption to take the next step.

The drive comes as the survey reveals that whilst motivations regarding adoption are overwhelmingly positive amongst the black community, there are a number of barriers and misconceptions that deter people from taking the next step. This includes concerns around people feeling that their housing is not adequate (35%); finances not being in a good enough position (30%) and worries about their age (20%).

At a time when national statistics reveal that black and mixed-heritage children are disproportionately represented in the care system, a factor that one in six respondents was aware of, the National Adoption Recruitment campaign is raising awareness that the key attribute for adopting a child is providing a loving, safe and stable home and that factors such as occupation, salary, the size of someone’s home, home ownership or age are not important.

The data also revealed that there are a number of incorrect assumptions about the type of person who can adopt. Contrary to beliefs outlined in the survey, those for whom English is not their first language, single people and those who are not married can adopt.

Adopter Fran and her daugter Liya

Bishop Joe Aldred, broadcaster and writer, said: “People think that if you’re in a low income job or on benefits, you cannot adopt, this is not the case. The National Adoption Recruitment campaign reminds people that not only is the adoption process quicker and simpler than it once was but that the chances are, if you’d like to adopt, it’s very likely you can. Over the years we have seen the fulfilling challenge of adoption at work in several people, including close family, who have benefited from being adopted and some who have adopted. Every child deserves a loving home and I urge anyone who is considering adoption to come forward and take that next step to put a stop to our children waiting longer for an adoptive family.”

Sinitta, singer and mum of two, said: I would definitely encourage others to consider adoption. I always knew I wanted children and I tried everything from IVF to surrogacy to have them. All of those journeys led to heartbreak, except adoption. The feeling of finally becoming a mother was almost indescribable; it’s just everything. It was everything I wanted and more. I love my children more than anything and I always say that love is thicker than blood.”

Reflecting on her experience, adopter Fran says: “The best thing about adopting is knowing that you’ve made a constructive change to someone’s life and that they have done the same for you. My daughter has made my parents grandparents, my brother an uncle and my friends Godparents. I’m honoured to be her mum, she is such a blessing. To anyone in the black community considering adopting I would say absolutely go for it. There are children out there who need support and love and you can add so much value and make a difference to their lives. Your situation – if you are single, married or older for example – won’t matter, if you can provide a loving and nurturing home, I’d say go for it.”

Further information can be found at www.youcanadopt.co.uk/blackadopters

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Renewed Support for Dominica’s Native Parrots https://www.caribdirect.com/renewed-support-for-dominicas-native-parrots/ Sun, 11 Oct 2020 12:26:57 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44813 BirdsCaribbean Welcomes Renewed Support for Dominica’s Native Parrots 8 October 2020—BirdsCaribbean approves of Dominica’s plans to launch new efforts to protect the Sisserou and Jaco parrots. Both species are rare and live nowhere else in the world. A recent letter from the Ministry of Environment, Rural Modernization and Kalinago Upliftment, attached here, reaffirms Government’s pledge […]

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BirdsCaribbean Welcomes Renewed Support for Dominica’s Native Parrots
8 October 2020—BirdsCaribbean approves of Dominica’s plans to launch new efforts to protect the Sisserou and Jaco parrots. Both species are rare and live nowhere else in the world. A recent letter from the Ministry of Environment, Rural Modernization and Kalinago Upliftment, attached here, reaffirms Government’s pledge to help these birds locally, with the help of long-term international and local partners. This includes the return of parrots secretly taken to Germany in March 2018. Other measures include parrot surveys, further repair of the Parrot Centre, and more.

Sisserou

On March 18th, 2018, a few months after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island, the Association for the Conservation of Threatened Parrots (ACTP) took rare parrots from Dominica. This included two Sisserou (Imperial Parrots, Amazona imperialis) and ten Jaco (Red-necked Parrots, Amazona arausiaca), all hatched in the wild. Claiming this was an “emergency measure,” ACTP took the parrots to a private facility in Germany.  All the parrots had survived Maria and had been rehabilitated.
The export was not approved by Dominica’s management or scientific authorities for the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). Dominica’s Forestry, Wildlife and Parks Division was not consulted or warned. BirdsCaribbean expressed its deep concern and was among thirteen groups that wrote a letter to the United Nations.
On May 1, 2018, over forty well-known scientists from around the world wrote to Dominican and German authorities. They urged the return of the birds and an investigation into ACTP. ACTP was the subject of two reports in the Australian Guardian later that year. They were also featured in an article in Audubon Magazine’s Summer 2020 issue, among others. These revealed that the group also had removed hundreds of rare parrots from Australia and Brazil, and rare parrots from St. Lucia and St. Vincent. The articles also revealed that ACTP’s director was convicted of several crimes and has no scientific credentials.

Jaco

BirdsCaribbean supports its partners, who work hard to protect rare species such as the iconic Sisserou in their home country. The group still urges the return of Dominica’s parrots to the Parrot Conservation and Research Centre in Roseau. Plans to renovate the Parrot Centre are also endorsed.
Links with local nature groups and local skill building will provide for a hopeful future for these birds. BirdsCaribbean supports the government’s Wildlife Conservation Partnership plan. These forward steps are a welcome ray of light in these hard times.
Ministry of Environment, Rural Modernization and Kalinago Upliftment, Minister-Letter

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Why Donald Trump is in soup https://www.caribdirect.com/why-donald-trump-is-in-soup/ Sat, 10 Oct 2020 07:46:50 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44810 Covid-19 and why Donald Trump will likely lose the November 3 Election, and the Republicans the Senate Just under a year ago the biggest news story was trade wars, especially the USA versus China. Trade tensions between the super powers threatened the global economy. Before the advent of COVID-19 the USA appeared to have its […]

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Resident socio-political columnist, Dickson Igwe.

Covid-19 and why Donald Trump will likely lose the November 3 Election, and the Republicans the Senate

Just under a year ago the biggest news story was trade wars, especially the USA versus China. Trade tensions between the super powers threatened the global economy.

Before the advent of COVID-19 the USA appeared to have its new and rising adversary- China- on the ropes. China appeared to be losing the trade war. China was being strongly checked by the USA. Its ascendancy was in question.

Then the Covid-19 Pandemic came out the blue first appearing in Wuhan, China. Whether China was guilty of deception or not in its untimely announcement that there was a big problem with this virus is today beside the point.

China- unlike the USA and UK- acted thoroughly and aggressively at the onset. And eventually China contained the virus.

Then a new criticism sparked. The western media, especially papers and sites on the right and far right, began to blame China for the outbreak. The story was that China had purposely hidden critical information about the virus outbreak from the world. This was an alleged propaganda that was being driven by western leaders- especially the leaders of the USA and UK.

Joe Biden and Donald Trump

This may have been true to some extent. However it was the gargantuan ‘’cock up’’ by Donald Trump and Western Leaders, who also knew of the potency of the virus,  and who stupidly kept their countries open, that drove the pandemic to the place where the world was at threat and under lockdown.

Initially the western world believed Covid-19 was a disease unique to China.

When the virus arrived on western shores there was anger. Trump’s USA, ignored the science, and denied reality. The result has been 7 million people infected and 220 000 dead.

Compared to the USA- with a China that has over four times as many people as the US- China has had a tiny fraction of infections and deaths as the USA.

Then, unlike western economies, the Chinese economy together with Pacific economies has returned to growth.

Pundits have asserted that a widespread adherence to the law as stated by the Communist party and a culture of collective responsibility is the reason.

On the other hand in the USA and elsewhere, wearing a protective mask became contention.

Trump led a significant set of US citizens, mainly White Republicans, to mock the wearing of masks, declaring the wearing of masks a sign of weakness.

Scientists are clear that the wearing of masks significantly reduces the risk of contracting and transmitting the virus.

Trump’s disdain for health protocols combined with a shrinking US economy- the IMF has predicted the US economy will shrink by 8% in 2020- shows why Joe Biden is 10 points ahead in the latest poll averages.

Then Trump contracted the virus in early October, and the virus has spread in the White House and places where Republicans have been campaigning. This is the great irony of the USA 2020 Election campaign.

The fact remains that good public health and a healthy economy are synonyms. There can be no healthy economy in the midst of a raging pandemic. Donald Trump failed to understand that fact and will very likely pay dearly in November.

Connect with Dickson Igwe on Facebook and Twitter

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Menelik Shabazz Premiere Screening and Q&A https://www.caribdirect.com/menelik-shabazz-premiere-screening-and-qa/ Fri, 09 Oct 2020 17:24:43 +0000 https://www.caribdirect.com/?p=44802 Goodemanagement is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting. Sista M Queen Introducing Menelik Shabazz Premiere short film screening and Q&A Menelik Shabazz is an Award winning film director, producer, and writer – known as a key pioneer in the development of contemporary black British cinema. Born in St. John, Barbados. He is known for […]

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Goodemanagement is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Sista M Queen Introducing Menelik Shabazz Premiere short film screening and Q&A

Menelik Shabazz is an Award winning film director, producer, and writer – known as a key pioneer in the development of contemporary black British cinema. Born in St. John, Barbados.

Menelik Shabaz

He is known for a number of films including Burning An Illusion, Catch A Fire, The Story of Lovers Rock, Looking for Love, Pharaohs Unveiled and many more.
Topic: PATH 2020 – Ancestral vision of Redemption

 ‘Where are we going spiritually? Can our Ancestors offer a path to salvation?

Come and enjoy Menelik’s latest short film, although free donations are appreciated.
Date & Time: Oct 11, 2020
7:00 PM London🇬🇧
8:00 PM Zimbabwe 🇿🇼
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2:00 PM Barbados 🇧🇧
2:00 PM Trinidad🇹🇹
2:00 PM New York🇺🇸
Register in advance for this meeting for security purposes:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
Peace, love, & prosperity,
👑🎬👑🎬👑🎬👑🎬👑
Peace, love, & prosperity,
Sista M Queen 👸

GoodeManagement
07863599130

 

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