Projects and links

17 06 2011

Question: what’s the link between Finnish teachers, Geronimo, the NHS, building a youth centre, Osama Bin Laden, horse riding, surfing polar bears and healthy eating?

Answer: I’ve been reading about them this week.

Let’s Move

Let’s Move! is a comprehensive initiative, launched by the First Lady, dedicated to solving the problem of obesity within a generation, so that children born today will grow up healthier and able to pursue their dreams. Sure, this is an ambitious goal. But with your help, we can do it.

Building Projects

naturalhomes.org are taking donations for wooden pallets. The pallets for an Earth Tipi project to build 6,000 sustainable homes on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Each home needs 200 pallets and costs $10,000. Each Facebook sponsor will have their name placed on their pallet and a photo of the pallet on the Earth Tipi website. All the photos will form a gallery of Facebook sponsors with links to the sponsors Facebook page or profile.

Another interesting building method is the bottle brick. ‘Bricks’ are made by stuffing plastic bottles with rubbish. They are then enclosed in a wire frame and covered with cob.

Village Earth are taking donations to employ youths to build their own youth centre on Pine Ridge. From the Village Earth website:

Help the Wounded Knee Community Development Corporation (WKCDC) employ youth to renovate [an] old one-room schoolhouse into their own youth center! They need to raise $5000 by June 30th to purchase the remaining supplies for the project.

The Wounded Knee CDC has been approved to administer funding from the Federal Job Training Partnership Act, enough to pay approximately 40 youth (ages 14-22) from the district to transform an old one-room school-house into the Wounded Knee Youth Programs Facility. However, the funding does not cover the entire amount needed for materials and supplies.

Even if you can’t donate, please share the links.

Lakota Horsemanship Organisation

The Lakota Horsemanship Organisation is a non-profit organisation which runs workshops and takes children and young people on visits, camps and memorial rides. In an environment with 80% – 90% unemployment, with a huge school drop-out rate, where alcoholism and drug addiction are rife, where dwellings house several families and often don’t have heating, electricity or even running water, it is hardly surprising that the teen suicide rate is 150% higher than the national average and projects like this are really important.

As well as monetary donations, they take donation of the following goods:

  • Horse tack and accessories of any type
  • Medicine, ointments and care products
  • Arts and crafts supplies for the kids and for workshops
  • Outdoor equipment, sleeping bags, tents etc
  • First aid sets
  • School material, pens, writing pads, painting books

In the News

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DIY

24 05 2011
I know that the mere mention of DIY sends shivers up some people’s spines. Although it’s often time-consuming, noisy, messy and or smelly, it really doesn’t have to be as hard as you think. I’m really selling it here, aren’t I?
Personally, I enjoy DIY once I get started, but I find the getting started difficult – I just can’t motivate myself to do it – what if I get half-way through and find I want to stop and can’t? What if I get a room into a state in which it can’t be used and then don’t get time to finish? I don’t worry that I can’t do it, I worry that I just won’t do it, which can be overcome – it’s a case of determination and mind over matter.
Many people do worry that they can’t do it, though, or they don’t know how to go about it and don’t know where to start. There’s also the potential problem of not having the kit for the job.This is all sounding a bit negative, isn’t it? Let’s cut to the good bits.

There are now LOADS of free resources online. With the continued popularity of DIY shows in recent years, the BBC and Channel 4 (and probably other TV channels) have lots of videos and step-by-step instructions on their websites (links at the end), as do hardware stores, such as B&Q.

The larger hardware stores, including B&Q, also offer tool hire, so there’s no need to shell out huge amounts of money for equipment you’ll only use once or twice.

B&Q and, again, probably other stores, offer free demonstrations of how to perform various tasks in their stores – details are provided on their website and are also tweeted by @BandQ on Twitter.

So, it’s time-consuming, messy, noisy and all that other stuff we mentioned above – why bother with DIY? Firstly, it’s cheaper than paying someone to do it for you and means that jobs that wouldn’t be worth spending the money on can be done. Secondly, you can get a great sense of pride and satisfaction from looking at something that you have completed, particularly if you’ve pushed yourself out of your comfort zone and done something you’d never done before and perhaps thought you couldn’t. Thirdly, our surroundings are important to us. If our home looks shabby and things are broken, we sub-consciously start to feel that we don’t deserve good things and over time it wears us down.
As a Bunty annual I had as a child stated, “the first step towards feeling good is looking good”.I’ve just searched Twitter for #householdpride and there are no tweets – let’s get it up there.

Links








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