It is imperative to invest in childreen.

Investing any resources to help children survive and develop to their full potential is, first and foremost, a moral imperative. But investing in children is also important on practical grounds as it yields positive benefits not just to the economies but the societies as well. 
Therefore, the most opportune time to break the cycle of poverty, or prevent it from beginning, is in early childhood. Donate to Save the childreen’s Annual Fund Appeal today through this link:


Assassination attempt on activist Dr Denis Mukwege;

Ungent apeal: Democratic Republic of Congo must protect Dr. Denis Mukwege after violent attack.

Dr. Mukwege is a founding member of the Advisory Committee of the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict regoins.

Dr. Denis Mukwege
Dr. Mukwege is a world-renowned surgeon and director of Panzi Hospital in Eastern Congo’s South Kivu province. The clinic has treated over 30,000 survivors of sexual violence.
According to the African Press Organization (APO); October 27, 2012, The International Campaign to Stop Rape and Gender Violence in Conflict ( urgently calls on the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo to protect Doctor Denis Mukwege after a violent attack and assassination attempt at his home in Bukavu.
Campaign member Physicians for Human Rights, today reported that four armed men forced themselves into Dr. Mukwege’s home in his absence and held hostage several family members at gunpoint. Upon his arrival, they tried to force him out of his car; mean while shooting his trusted security guard and aide who attempted to intervene; he died on the spot. Dr. Mukwege lowered his head and body quickly when the armed men fired shots towards him, before driving off in his car, which was later found abandoned.
In a statement released by V-Day that evening, V-Day Founder/Playwright Eve Ensler stated the followings;  “The attempted assassination on Dr. Mukwege and the murdering of his security guard once again highlights how deadly serious the situation is in Eastern Congo. One of the great men of the world was almost murdered tonight. We cannot let this continue, we must create an environment where it is safe for Dr. Mukwege and all the people of Congo to live and thrive. Let this tragedy be the call to end the war in Congo once and for all.”
Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee said, “Dr. Mukwege embodies the strength of Congolese women who never relent in the face of such senseless violence. I join the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict, and others, in calling for the Democratic Republic of Congo to bring the perpetrators of the attack to justice.”
The International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict is led by the Nobel Peace Laureates of the Nobel Women’s Initiative and an Advisory Committee comprising of 25 organizations working at the international, regional and community levels to stop rape.
Since its launch in May 2012, more than 600 organizations from around the world have joined. The Campaign demands urgent and bold political leadership to prevent rape in conflict, to protect civilians and rape survivors, and calls for justice for all—including effective prosecution of those responsible.

Check out this latest video of Meeting Grand Challenges for the 21st Century

Meeting Grand Challenges for the 21st Century. Global Agenda Council Members met to share ideas and real options to address the grand challenges of the 21st century.

With input from people around the world — an international group of leading technological thinkers were asked to identify the Grand Challenges for Engineering in the 21st Century. 
From urban centers to remote corners of Earth, the depths of the oceans to space, humanity has always sought to transcend barriers, overcome challenges, and create opportunities that improve life in our part of the universe. In the last century alone, many great engineering achievements became so commonplace that we now take them mostly for granted. Technology allows an abundant supply of food and safe drinking water for much of the world. We rely on electricity for many of our daily activities. We can travel the globe with relative ease, and bring goods and services wherever they are needed. Growing computer and communications technologies are opening up vast stores of knowledge and entertainment. As remarkable as these engineering achievements are, certainly just as many more great challenges and opportunities remain to be realized. While some seem clear, many others are indistinct and many more surely lie beyond most of our imaginations. Hope today such discussion from people like Valerie amos can be a begining of  a path to the future. 
This meeting was attended by the following key people; 

• Baroness Valerie Amos, Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), New York; Global Agenda Council on Catastrophic Risks.

• Céline Cousteau, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, CauseCentric Productions, USA; Global Agenda Council on Oceans. 
• Charlotte Petri Gornitzka, Director-General, Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), Sweden; Global Agenda Council on Youth Unemployment.
• Beatrice Weder di Mauro, Professor of Economics, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany; Young Global Leader Alumnus; Global Agenda Council on Fiscal Sustainability.

Unfaithful husband deforms wife’s face with acid

A WOMAN whose husband threw acid in her face after she divorced him has now been forced into remarrying him again.

Nurbanu divorced her husband of 18 years eight days before he returned and threw acid in her face in Shatkhira in south west Bangladesh. She had originally ended the marriage after she found him with another woman.
According to Nurbanu account to The Huffington Post, “My husband went into hiding. After 10 months he was caught and jailed for a year,”
Nurbanu’s husband spent 12 months in jail for disfiguring her. He had been on the run for ten months before authorities caught up with him, but after his release his family coerced her into re-marrying him.
“His mother paid for his release on bail,” she said. “She made me sign an affidavit to have him released. She used my sons to convince me to marry him again.”
The acid attack has left the 36-year-old mother with horrific facial injuries. She is now blind and unable to even prepare a meal for herself.

Nurbanu is one of thousands of women in Bangladesh who have had acid flung at them by a relative or partner due to domestic arguments, financial woes or even rejected marriage proposals.
Violence against women remains an issue, according to Monira Rahman, the CEO of the acid survivors association in Bangladesh
“Having worked with survivors of acid and petrol attacks in Bangladesh for the past 14 years, I know that violence is a major obstacle for women’s ability to access their rights,” Ms Rahman said.
“Until women have real equality, they will continue to not only suffer the most from poverty but also be subjected to violence.”
While government efforts have seen a decline in the number of acid attacks which has fallen from 500 in 2002 to 111 in 2011, there is still more work to be done Ms Rahman said.

TB Joshua sponsors a Nigerian Student to Oxford University

Nigerian Pastor T.B. Joshua who was recently named amoung others as one of the richest pastors in Nigeria, shocked congregants at his church, The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations on Sunday 18th November 2012 when it was revealed he has sponsored a Nigerian student to study a PhD in the University of Oxford to the tune of £100,000, approximately N26 million. T B Joshua is supposedly well known for his expansive philanthropic endeavours. 

Miss Yinka Oduwole, who according to her testimony was one of the youth who was brought up in The SCOAN and worked there extensively. she accounted that,  she had gained admission to study a PhD in Engineering Science in Oxford University, UK after a successful Master’s Programme in University College London (UCL). Yinka, who was equally sponsored in her Master’s Degree in Broadband Communication in UCL in which she came out with a distinction, said Prophet T.B. Joshua and Emmanuel TV Partners had paid the sum of £100,000 to enable her to study for a PhD in the prestigious Oxford University.
“My advice to youth all over the world is that they should pray as if everything depends on God and work as if everything depends on them,” Yinka, also a First-Class graduate from the University of Lagos, told the congregation and viewers worldwide on Emmanuel TV, equally counselling the youth to find a job in the church and actively engage in godly activities.
According to Forbes estimates; Joshua has spent up to $20m in charitable activities alone in the last three years. Thousands of less privileged students are currently studying in universities across Nigeria and around the world courtesy of SCOAN’s scholarship program.

Activist arrested and detained in Cameroon

Solomon Tembang Mforgham, AfricaNews Reporter in Yaoundé, Cameroon;

Four environmental activists have been arrested and detained in Cameroon. Nasako Besingi, the director of Struggle to Economise Future Environment (SEFE), was detained without charge on November 14, 2012 with three of his colleagues in the town of Mundemba in the South West region of Cameroon.
In a press release, Greenpeace International and Greenpeace Africa have expressed disgust over the arrest of environmental activists and called for their immediate release. They have also called on the Cameroonian authorities to respect the rule of law and individuals’ human rights.
Besingi, it would be noted, has been a vocal and peaceful critic of the plans and working practices of US-based company, Herakles Farms, whose large-scale palm oil plantation project in the region, he says, would cause widespread environmental destruction and threaten the livelihoods of residents in an area home to vital biodiversity.
The activities of SEFE have always been based on legal court actions and peaceful social dialogue around the only real tangible asset of people in the region – land.
“The proposed plantation by Herakles Farms is the wrong project in the wrong place and residents and individuals opposed to it should be free to voice their concerns in a peaceful manner,” said Michael Obrien-Onyeka, Greenpeace Africa’s Executive Director.
“The detention of Mr. Besingi and his colleagues is in violation of Cameroonian law and of the internationally protected rights to freedom of expression and liberty and security of person,” he added

The business of agriculture is well promoted among young people in Ghana

“Yara is all about knowledge; we don’t believe we just sell fertilizer, but we bring the knowledge that comes with it”, said Mehdi Saint-André, Managing Director of Yara Ghana.

According to him, the Academy will discourage the perception that farming is a punishment and rather inculcate in students the knowledge and skills in land preparation, seed selection and fertilizer application as well as post harvest activities and storage.

The pilot project would be undertaken with inmates of the Royal Seed Home at Odupong Ofaankor, Kasoa, where the company has established a 15-acre maize farm to support the orphanage.

“Hopefully for the next farming season in March/April 2013, we’ll be ready and we’ll go on the farm with a group of children but it should be incorporated in the school curricula; if they have some topics which is about farming or agriculture, then they can go on the field with us to learn”, stated Saint-André.
He reiterated that Yara Ghana’s corporate social responsibility projects are fully integrated into its business with an objective to develop the productivity of the Ghanaian farmer.
He cited the ‘Yara Crop Clinic’ for product retailers and the Masara N’Arziki “Maize for Prosperity” projects as thriving CSR schemes to help increase knowledge and incomes among local farmers.
Meanwhile, Yara Ghana has commissioned a Gh₵20,000 potable water facility to meet the needs of the 145 inmates of the Royal Seed Home.
Founder of the Home, Mrs. Naomi Esi Amoah is excited at the gesture and appealed to other benevolent individuals and institutions to support in “caring for the children who need to be trained as future leaders with good vision”.

Wednesday 28 November 2012