Saturday, June 4, 2016

Mentoring From Around the World to Help South Africa's Youths

When it comes to the most important inventions created since 1900, few would disagree with putting the Internet at or near the top of the list.  In addition to providing an enormous amount of information on countless topics, the Internet also allows people to help make the world a better place.  Infinite Family is one of the many agencies that harness the power of the Internet for the greater good.

Infinite Family helps children who have been affected by HIV/AIDS by providing them with a mentor.  Mentors are adults who live all over the world and wish to provide hope, guidance, and emotional support to mentees.  Mentees, also referred to as Net Buddies, are children of various ages who live in South Africa.  These children may have been orphaned by AIDs, may have HIV/AIDS in their family, and/or may have HIV/AIDS themselves.  The agency does not provide this personal information.  The agency does provide several training sessions for those who wish to be mentors, which touch on a variety of things, including the history of South Africa, cultural issues involving HIV/AIDS, and more.  Training sessions are carried out over the Internet.

Mentoring is done inside video chat rooms.  There are a variety of things that can take place in the video chat rooms: conversations, tutoring, playing games, drawing, writing, etc.

Mentoring takes place once a week for 30 minutes.  Such limited times can create change that can last a lifetime.

I've been a mentor for many years.  It's one of the most important things that I have ever done in my life. There is no fee involved.  But patience and kindness are required.

To learn more, visit Infinite Family.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Helping the Bees

For the past few years, I've had a love/hate relationship with bees.  I don't like finding them in my house.  I don't like that at all.  And for some reason, they like to circle me when I walk down the street.  It's quite embarrassing to walk down the street encircled by bees, especially when I'm on my crutches and I have to walk even slower than I normally do.

But there's no doubt about it, bees are major contributors to the survival of humans.  They are extremely important to us agriculturally and economically.  I am strongly against bee keeping.  I believe that bees should be free.  But the benefits of bees go way beyond honey.

Elite Daily presents the following about bees:

"...These are many of the crops pollinated by bees: Almonds, apples, apricots, avocados, blueberries, cantaloupes, cashews, coffee, cranberries, cucumbers, eggplants, grapes, kiwis, mangoes, okra, peaches, pears, peppers, strawberries, tangerines, walnuts and watermelons.

Without bees, these crops would cease to exist. Bees are crucial to our existence as well, thus we must work harder to protect and preserve them" (Haltiwanger, 2014).

According to the Natural Resources Defense Council (2011), "without bees to spread seeds, many plants-including food crops- would die off."

Yet, bees are being killed off at alarming rates.  There are different factors that come into play, including global warming and use of neonicotinoid pesticides.  Global warming is a huge, complex problem.  However, the pesticide issues may be tackled more easily.  Neonicotinoid pesticides are particularly dangerous to bees.

North Coast Gardening presents the public with information on bee friendly pesticides.  According to them, if you plan on using pesticides that are dangerous to bees, you need to use them "at dawn or dusk when bees aren't active" (Genevieve, 2010).  To reach that article, please click here.

Please consider signing the following petition that will go to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Source:
Haltiwanger, J.   (Sept. 15, 2014).  If all the bees in the world die, humans would not service. Elite Daily.
http://elitedaily.com/news/world/humans-need-bees-to-survive/755737/

Natural Resources Defense Council.  (2011).  Why we need bees:  Nature's tiny workers put food on the table.

McDonell, T.  (July 9, 2015). Here's why all the bees are dying.  Mother Jones. 
http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2015/07/climate-change-killing-bumblebees

Creedo Action.  Tell the EPA:  Ban bee killing pesticides
http://act.credoaction.com/sign/epa_neonics_bees?sp_ref=171065570.4.147811.f.465440.2&referring_akid=.9285513.P59K_8&source=fb_share_sp

Genevieve. (May 16, 2010).  Honeybee love:  Keeping honeybees safe while using pesticides.  North Coast Gardening - Gardening in the Pacific Northwest.
http://northcoastgardening.com/2010/05/honeybee-safe-pesticides/