WaterAid Liberia in partnership with the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the County Health Team of Montserrado has launched a four-year ‘Healthy Start’ Program aimed at addressing access to safe water, improved sanitation and hygiene.Water breaks the chain of disease transmission so access to pure, safe and clean water is important for every home, maintained Dehwehn O. Yeabah, Director of the Division of Environmental Occupational Health at the MOH.He was speaking during a program yesterday at the Careysburg Health Center outside Monrovia where heemphasized the need to prioritize the use of pure water in homes, clinics, hospitals and schools. “If safe water is adequately provided in all these places, including the rural areas, Liberia will have a healthy population far from water diseases,” assured Dr. Yeabah.”Water is one of the reasons that Liberia continues to experience a high reduction of the deadly Ebola virus, he said, adding, all of us have to continue frequently washing hands and observing other preventive measures to achieve the worthy goal of Ebola eradication,” Director Yeabah stressed.Also speaking, the team leader of WaterAid Liberia and Sierra Leone, Chuchu Selma, said his organization believes water, sanitation and hygiene services are fundamental to human survival and existence and as such it must be given priority as a human rights issue. “There is a poverty dimension where we see water, sanitation and hygiene as a way to lift poor people out of poverty. Where clean water, sanitation and good hygiene are lacking, improvements in health and nutrition are slow to start and hard to sustain,” he noted.“Healthy Start is WaterAid’s four-year advocacy priority that focuses on improving the health and nutrition of newborn babies and children. We will do this by advocating for access to water, sanitation and hygiene promotion to be integrated into health policies and delivery locally and nationally.” “We plan to do this in collaboration with the MOH through local organizations working within the health and WASH sector,” he emphasized.In remarks, the City Mayor of Careysburg, Anna Urey Philips, said the launch of the program in her city was unique especially within the vicinity of the clinic. Mayor Philips commended the program’s plan to provide water for the community as well.“Today we are happy to have water through your organization. Water is life and we need to continue to support this initiative,” she added.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
- Program offers experiential learning on NYS farms
Program offers experiential learning on NYS farms Cornell students will have an opportunity for hands-on learning about ecological approaches to agricultural systems through the new Lund Fellows Program for Regenerative Agriculture in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS).Available to undergraduates across colleges and disciplines, the Lund Fellows Program will launch in summer 2021 with in-person internships that combine rigorous, scientifically based classroom knowledge with practical, applied skills on local farms throughout New York state.Thanks to a gift from Judith Lund Biggs ’57, the Lund Fellows Program will enable students from all backgrounds to spend a summer immersed in a hands-on agricultural experience without worrying about paying for food, lodging or their student financial aid contribution.Applications are now being accepted until April 21. The program hopes to select eight students in the first year.Lund Fellows will spend eight weeks working on small-scale, agro-ecological, biodynamic and/or organic farms around Ithaca, the Hudson Valley and New York City. The intergenerational exchange of knowledge and life experiences between students, farmers and university faculty will raise awareness about the social and economic contexts inherent in diversified farming, while teaching the benefits of sustainable agricultural practices, said Rachel Bezner Kerr, faculty co-lead of the Lund Fellows Program and professor of global development.Designed to help students contribute to the work of the farms and community partners in meaningful ways, the program is actively seeking the participation of students and farmers from diverse disciplines and backgrounds.“We are very excited about the opportunity that this new program provides both to students and farms,” Bezner Kerr said. “Students often can’t afford to take unpaid internships but want to gain experience with regenerative, agro-ecological farming. Host farms will also receive support for the important mentoring and training role that they will provide.”The Lund Fellows Program builds on more than a century of purpose-driven education and experiential learning in CALS. Biodynamic and organic agriculture systems are among the fastest-growing segments of the U.S. agricultural market; the Lund Fellows Program will train future leaders and spread awareness about biodynamic, organic, regenerative and sustainable approaches to farming.“We were thrilled that the Biggs family had the vision to support this program, which we see as a model for training the next generation of farmers,” said Matthew Ryan, faculty co-lead and associate professor in the Soil and Crop Sciences Section of the School of Integrative Plant Science. “We were especially happy that the family recognized the importance of supporting Black, Indigenous and people of color farmers, who often go unrecognized.”Lund Biggs graduated from the College of Arts and Sciences, majoring in American Studies and Government. A longtime volunteer and donor to Cornell, she is inspired by her daughter’s life experience in organic and biodynamic farming in New York and France.Kelly Merchan is a communications specialist in the Department of Global Development. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Agriculture, american, communications, community, Cornell University, education, first year, France, Government, Indigenous, New York, Professor, research, Ryan, students, sustainable, university, York
- Yutong CB12: What don’t you want?
Having successfully entered the UK coach market, Yutong’s promised diesel bus has now arrived in the UK. It aims to offer a full specification for all operators, alongside a competitive price and quality build. Mel Holley visits dealership Pelican and test drives the pre-production modelIn just under three years, Castleford-based dealership Pelican Bus and Coach has sold almost 200 vehicles. With two models, a 9m and 12m, the 9m in particular has proved to be a spectacular hit and despite the current economic uncertainty, Sales Manager Bob Elliott says there is no sign of a slow-down in enquiries or orders, with customer orders and stock vehicles en route, plus stock at Pelican available for immediate delivery.Yutong CB12 is the first bus the manufacturer is offering in the UK, with further variants planned to followWith that in mind, and its long-held plan to introduce buses into the UK – with diesel and electric models in the frame – the first 12m diesel version has just arrived in the UK. Already, reports Bob, Pelican has “firm enquiries” of nearly double figures, and many are expected to translate into orders fairly soon.It will be followed later in the year by a full-electric bus at 10.8m, with a diesel variant of similar length expected in 2017.The initial bus is a pre-production model that is fully-loaded with everything, ready for Whole Vehicle Type Approval. It’s then up to operators to decide what they don’t want. Pelican is also canvassing operator opinion to establish what would be an ideal UK ‘stock’ specification.For example, while the test vehicle is fitted with air-conditioning – purely for type approval – it’s not expected that many operators will want this option.Designated CB12, standing for City Bus 12m, not only will Pelican hold stock vehicles, but customer-specific requirements can be met.BuildThe integral CB12 is powered by the proven combination of a six-cylinder Cummins ISB6.7 engine, rated at 240bhp, mated with a six-speed ZF EcoLife automatic gearbox.In common with Yutong’s coaches, the mild-steel-built CB12 is corrosion-protected using cataphoretic dip, setting it alongside Mercedes-Benz as the only other UK-sold bus to undergo this process. As a result, Yutong provides a 10-year anti-corrosion guarantee.240bhp Cummins ISB6.7 engine is fitted in line with ZF EcoLife six-speed automatic gearboxExternally, stretched steel panels are used. Whether removable lower panels would be preferred is another area of feedback that Pelican is canvassing.Other main components are familiar including SACHS shock absorber bags, WABCO dual-circuit disc brakes all round, ZF integral power steering and Michelin Citybus tyres.The single-door bus has its radiator on the nearside, while the engine bay is not cluttered. Engineers and those doing walk-round checks on winter mornings will appreciate the three engine bay lights, plus another light on a wander lead. The coolant level gauge is clear to view, while the dipstick is conveniently located. There is also an automatic powder fire extinguishing system.Fuel fillers for the 255-litre fuel tanks are on both sides behind the front wheels, while AdBlue is filled at the rear offside. The 10-litre windscreen washer bottle is filled at the front nearside, behind a swing-out flap.A full-height emergency door is at the rear of the low-floor section on the offside.As this bus comes ‘fully-loaded’ it exhibits a number of features not normally found in the UK. Operators with less secure overnight (or daytime layover) parking might welcome the locks on every flap and panel, along with the lockable passenger entry door. Yet keys can be lost, so it’s likely that this will be an option not taken up by many. Keys are not required to start the bus; it’s a conventional push-button arrangement.Also, being fully-loaded in terms of specification means that its 11,700kg unladen weight is a little higher than its competitors from Volvo and Mercedes-Benz. However, deleting items will improve this figure.A number of small changes have already been identified that will be incorporated into production models, one being that the exterior break-glass panel for the emergency exit will become a UK-style handle. Inside, the handle has a sliding cover to prevent accidental use.Passenger accessThe in-swinging dual doors reveal a bookleaf wheelchair ramp, which is simple to use – there are no complex catches. Despite being a ‘heavyweight’ bus with full-size wheels, the entrance area is not crowded and the space between the wheelboxes doesn’t feel cramped.Wheelchair access provided by standard bookleaf-style rampThe low-floor area contains 12 fixed seats plus four tip-ups, of which two are in the wheelchair bay on the nearside, and two by the emergency door. All the tip-ups have seatbelts – again another option that could be deleted.A pair of steps accesses the rear section offering a further 20 seats, and a final ascent of two more steps provides access to the rear row of five. There’s not much headroom at these seats, due to the need to accommodate the in-line drivetrain, although they do offer a good view down the bus. A further positive is that there is no ‘wardrobe’ as in one competitor’s model, plus a full-width rear window letting in light. The total capacity is 70, of which 43 are seated.Passenger comfortOne aspect that won’t be carried over into production models is the New City plastic seats, with continental-style fixed covers. Despite this, for short journeys, such as car park shuttles, they are perfectly adequate. Operators will also have a choice about seating arrangements – for example the seats over the front wheelboxes might be preferred as luggage pens.Total capacity of 70, with 43 seated as saloon progressively rises to rearAgain, for type approval purposes, a full Transport for London-style ‘climbing frame’ of handpoles and straphangers is fitted, although being in a deep silver they are not as garish as those specified for the capital. They are extremely robust and would be effective on high-density work where there is a full complement of standees. The ‘standard UK-spec’ version will have fewer handpoles, in line with operators’ wishes.The saloon has a range of light-coloured plastics, with deep side windows. Almost all the windows have inward-opening hoppers (some could be deleted), and the extra-dark tinted glazing means that from the outside there’s a clean look.Further passenger comforts are provided by a pair of monitors (behind the driver and emergency door), six loudspeakers, two air-conditioning units (front and rear) which proved powerful and effective, and front blower and perimeter heaters. Separate CD and DVD players are fitted, along with a 10-camera digital CCTV system (with one month’s storage) from the six external and four internal cameras.The air-conditioning ducts on the curved cove panels still leave space at the front of the saloon for route information, or advertising. Without air-con, all panels would be available.Finally, there is a pair of USB sockets in the sidewall at every passenger seating position, along with two metal litter bins (front and middle).Driver comfortThe cab is nicely laid-out, and the carbon-effect finish of the wrap-around dash makes this a cut above a ‘standard bus’. The cab door is hinged at the front; this will be changed to become rear-hinged. There is adequate storage space in the cab – with generous space in the cab door – although room behind or around the seat for the driver’s bag is minimal.Actia dashboard incorporated in wrap-around cab stylingThe air-suspended Grammar driver’s seat assures a comfortable driving position, while the 21-inch steering wheel is adjustable for height and reach. For city bus work, a smaller steering wheel would be more driver-friendly.Above the driver’s head are the CD and DVD players, plus a VDO tachograph. Just above the windscreen is a display showing the output from the 10 CCTV cameras. It automatically shows the image from the rear camera when reverse gear is selected. Next to this are two ‘eyeball’ air vents for the driver.The deep signalling window slides in two sections, front and rear, and is generously tall allowing plenty of scope for all heights of drivers.An Actia instrument panel displays the speed and RPM, along with other standard functions. A socket for on-board diagnostics is on the side of the dashboard.A bank of dashboard switches is easy to follow, with the D-N-R push-buttons to the left, along with the single door open/close button. The handbrake is placed at the immediate right of the driver. In the same area is a driver’s USB power port and 12v power socketA good set of mirrors aids visibility immensely (although some operators may prefer the smaller style more commonly found in the UK), and neither is the visibility compromised by the A or B pillars. The mirrors remained firm and vibration-free, and all-round visibility is very good.Overall the cab area is good and a pleasant place for a day’s work.PerformanceThe trusted combination of the six-cylinder Cummins and EcoLife gearbox delivers all the performance one could wish for. Indeed, ‘give it the beans’ and you’ll dislodge standing passengers. The city bus set-up means that the top speed is electronically limited to 85km/h, and at the 52.8mph maximum the engine speed is just over 1,500rpm.Mirrors offer good view, but UK bus operators may prefer a revised arrangementOur test circuit, with a mixture of interurban, urban and deep rural routes, showed that its hill climbing abilities are excellent, while gear changes are imperceptible.The narrow and twisting rural section of our Castleford-Wakefield route is covered by Arriva’s 188 service, which sensibly uses short midibuses; despite this the 12m Yutong coped admirably, thanks in part to its 19.5m turning circle and good visibility.On a day with strong, blustery winds, the chassis remained totally composed and unruffled by the buffeting. It was stable at all speeds and felt like a solid bus, while the precise, and nicely-weighted power steering meant that we had no difficulty with positioning, despite some challenging tight turns. The bus is comfortable, stable and drives very well indeed.With six air bags, the ride was to the same standard, despite some rough surfaces, and the interior was rattle free, demonstrating a solid, well-built structure. All the interior panels were firmly attached and the main noise was from the engine and transmission.The all-round disc brakes are very effective, although the intarder takes much of the effort away and the two systems are blended together well. Pelican proposes to delete the 1-2-3 gear selections, and our test drive with some steep descents suggests that this shouldn’t be an issue.On our short test drive we weren’t able to get a fuel consumption figure, but early indications are that at least 10mpg should be achievable, says Pelican, depending on route characteristics.VerdictThe 12m bus market is not massive, but that doesn’t mean that a new competitor isn’t welcome. Pelican’s aftersales support is recognised for its quality, while the two-year bumper-to-bumper warranty provides the reassurance that operators demand.Overall, this is a good bus: from the outside its styling is modern, but without looks that could rapidly become dated. Inside, there’s very much a blank canvas that operators can choose what they wish to do with.You might think that the retail price of £145,000 for the bus, as tested, is a little more than you might expect.External lines are clean, fresh, modern and unlikely to date quicklyBut this takes into account the post-Brexit exchange-rate changes that are adding around £10,000 to the price of most manufacturers’ coach and bus products, which are now feeding through for 2017 orders. But significantly it is for the ‘fully-loaded’ spec. Rather than a cheap base price, and an expensive options list to tick, this is a ‘reverse options’ list – leading to the question: “What don’t you want?”For example, deleting the air-con will make a difference to the price. Once operator feedback has established what a ‘standard’ spec UK version should look like, then Pelican will price this accordingly.If you are in the market for a 12m bus, you need to make sure you look at Yutong’s offering, which seems set to follow the same standards and value-for-money it has already demonstrated in the UK coach market.