Tropical Storm Isaac in Haiti, Nearly Three Years After the Earthquake

first_img Water, food, medicine, blankets and tents. Haiti lacked all of it at first, when chaos and surprise seized the people of Haiti during the earthquake that devastated the country in January 2010. Afterward, supplies were abundant. Aid arrived by the tons from every corner of the planet, but little by little it started to accumulate, because Haiti did not have official distribution channels or proper mechanisms in place to deliver the assistance. It did not have a contingency plan for emergencies. No one knew where they should be distributing the necessary products, and there was no organized manner to respond to the people still crying out for help. On August 25, 2012 everything was different. When Tropical Storm Isaac started to hit the Haitian coast, more than 14,000 people across the country, mainly in the western and eastern parts of the island, were already evacuated thanks to the Haitian government and its international partners, including the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), which anticipated the possible damage. In the history of the country, this was the first preventive evacuation led by the Haitian government. The evacuees were already identified as members of vulnerable groups, such as refugees residing in camps, children, pregnant women, the elderly and people with disabilities, according to a statement from the Haitian government. These planned and organized evacuations were held throughout the day on August 24, a day before the storm made landfall. Additionally, many urgent evacuations were made during the night and early morning of August 25, while the weather conditions worsened. After the storm, a prompt and accurate damage assessment identified the most serious problems, and gave immediate assistance to people whose lives were at the greatest risk and required urgent attention. On August 26, the United Nations (UN) reported a toll of 19 deaths and 2,350 homes destroyed. Though these are not small, they are a stark contrast to the toll left by the earthquake of 2010, which took the lives of more than 200,000, and about 2.5 million homeless, according to figures from the UN. To assess Tropical Storm Isaac, the Haitian government and USAID used a team of experts in disaster response; all of which helped in the preparation of the storm, and are now determining the damages it caused, as well as where and what kind of humanitarian aid is needed. Preliminary reports indicate that the impact of the storm was more significant in Port-au-Prince and the southeastern departments of the country. From day one, humanitarian organizations were distributing emergency supplies to the needy, including water, food, personal hygiene packs, blankets, and plastic sheeting, among other items and necessities. The difference now is that all these resources were already in-country, ready to be used in incidents like this. Due in large part to the professional response and organization of the Haitian government before, during, and after Tropical Storm Isaac, countless and priceless lives have been saved. Lesson learned. By Dialogo August 30, 2012last_img read more

IHSAA blocks changes to state basketball tournament

first_imgThe state basketball tournament remains the same for local schools like Franklin County. (Image: Hoosier Temple/Twitter)INDIANAPOLIS – A proposed change to the state high school basketball tournament was voted down by IHSAA executives Monday.The committee agreed unanimously (17-0) against the measure that was presented to them in August by a study committee made up of representatives from Indiana Basketball Coaches Association, the Indiana Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association,  the IHSAA Board of Directors and IHSAA staff.The proposal, which would have begun with the 2015-16 school year, called for the largest 64 schools by enrollment to make up Class 4A. Sixteen sectionals would have been played with four teams each and all games played on Saturday.The remaining schools in Classes 3A,2A and 1A would have been evenly distributed with seven or eight schools per sectional and played in a Tuesday-Wednesday-Friday-Saturday format.Additional portions called for the IHSAA staff to determine host sites at each level of the state tournament with the same site hosting both years of the alignment window. In recent years, school administrators within each sectional have determined the host site with some rotation between schools“I want to commend the Executive Committee for their thoughtful deliberations surrounding the basketball tournament format proposals,” IHSAA Commissioner Bobby Cox said following the meeting.“The Committee entertained two different proposals throughout this process and in the final analysis, those varied proposals did not significantly improve the current tournament format.  While the Association is not presently modifying the four class tournament, several salient points were raised during the conversations and those objectives will be considered during the next reclassification and realignment exercise which will occur in April of 2015.”last_img read more

Brazilian ‘butt-lift’ surgeon dies after Rio torch relay

first_imgDR Ivo Pitanguy, one of the world’s top plastic surgeons who helped make Brazil a popular destination for the rich and famous to get work done, died on Saturday. He was 90.Pitanguy’s death came one day after he carried the Olympic flame that later lit the cauldron at the Games’ opening ceremony in Rio’s Maracana Stadium. Suffering various health problems, he carried the flame while sitting in a wheelchair.Pitanguy had a heart attack at his home in Rio de Janeiro, spokeswoman Patricia Sallum said.One of his signature surgeries earned the nickname the ‘Brazilian butt-lift’. His skills with the scalpel helped make beauty-obsessed Brazil a leading international destination for plastic surgery tourism and one of the countries where the most operations are performed.Pitanguy was said to have a long list of international jet-set types whom he operated on, though he was also careful not to release names. He became so successful that he commuted to work in a helicopter from a private island.Despite his fame and wealth, he also liked to help poor accident victims for free. Early in his career, he created a surgical wing of a hospital to treat those with few resources. Other hospitals followed suit, leading to several that offer discounted or even free plastic surgeries to the poor.Called the “philosopher of plastic surgery,” Pitanguy argued that beauty treatments can help people in the same way that psychoanalysis does because it helps break down internal barriers. In other words, changes made on the outside of the body can boost self-esteem.His body was cremated last Sunday. (The Guardian)last_img read more

Cricket festival in honour of Tony Cozier

first_imgLATE legendary cricket broadcaster Tony Cozier is being honoured with a tournament called the Tony Cozier 23 and Under Youth to Youth T-6 Cricket Festival scheduled to commence Sunday, September 27 at the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA).It is the first of its kind and is expected to attract a total of 16 teams from across the island. The prize money includes $500 for first place and the Tony Cozier challenge shield, second place finishers will take away $250 and the losing semi-finalists will earn $125, tournament director Rodney Simpson said.Simpson explained during last Friday morning’s press conference held at the YMCA that from next year it would be turned into a regional competition because Cozier was well known throughout the Caribbean.“This tournament this year would be a local tournament but next year we will make it a regional tournament because Tony Cozier, who died on May 11, 2016 at the age of 75, is known throughout the Caribbean. We want to move the tournament to different parts of the Caribbean, we want to play it in Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, move it around.“Through this first tournament, what we are going to do is that we are going to use this tournament to select a Barbados team to represent Barbados out of this first tournament. So, this tournament is not a one-off and not a local tournament. We will use the local tournament as a nursery to play in the regional tournament,” Simpson said.He explained that for this inaugural edition, the teams are going to be split into four zones, eight matches per day over a period of four Sundays. Two teams from each zone will advance through to the quarterfinal, semifinal and final. Individual prizes will also be given to the most outstanding performers. Hamilton Lashley, chairman of the Hamilton Lashley Human Development Foundation, who is hosting the event, said that it wasn’t by accident that they envisioned this tournament.He explained that the idea for this cricket festival was mooted after his foundation looked across the landscape of Barbados and realised that young people needed intervention in their lives. Therefore, Lashley, a former member of parliament and also a veteran community activist, along with his committee members, came up with this competition named after the former sports journalist, administrator, outstanding community practitioner and president of the Barbados Hockey Association.“If we are going to tackle the serious issues confronting our young people in this country, we have to use practical and popular ideals, ideas and activities to at least bring what I like to call, a kind of equilibrium to the social landscape.“We have decided as a committee that the best medium to use and the most attractive medium to use, contrary to what some social interventionist might think, is the element of sports. Sports continue to be underestimated and underrated in terms of the stabilising effect that it brings to the community,“ Lashley said.The outspoken activist added that he believes the accolade of the highest order for the independence award in Barbados should have been accorded to Cozier when he was alive. And it is not just Cozier but many other outstanding sportsmen and women, he noted, that should have been honoured and recognised while they were still alive.Cozier’s daughter Natalie Linton was present at the launch and spoke on behalf of her family including brother and cricket analyst Craig Cozier who was in Trinidad and Tobago for the Caribbean Premier League. Linton in expressing her gratitude said: “It is a pleasure for me to be here and for my dad to be honoured like this to have a competition named after him. I am certain with all the partners involved and Mr Lashley’s organisation and his team that it will be a successful tournament and will go on for years.Community Officer of the Hamilton Lashley Human Development Foundation, which has been in operation since 2006, Marc Laurent, added that it was an honour to recognise a stalwart such as Cozier and to highlight his contribution, not only to cricket but also to hockey.“This foundation has facilitated a number of community events. I need to tip my hat to Mr Lashley because a lot of it has been done without the assistance of what we call social media now. This is an opportunity to highlight activities that the foundation has been taking part in over the last couple of years, and use this as a platform or springboard to get more individuals on board through traditional media,” Laurent said. (Extracted from Barbados Today)last_img read more