Advertisement Principality Building Society has raised over £300,000 for three Welsh charities over the past two years. Home wins by the Welsh rugby team in the 2018 Six Nations boosted the total by £30,000!Principality has now donated £100,000 to each of three charities:Llamau, a leading homelessness charity in WalesCancer Research WalesSchool of Hard Knocks, which uses sport to help disadvantaged Welsh communities. 176 total views, 2 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis9 175 total views, 1 views today Howard Lake | 23 March 2018 | News Tagged with: corporate Wales / Cymru Photo: Top row – Wales rugby internationals Scott Baldwin, Rhys Patchell and Cory Hill Bottom row – Wendy Collie and Jenna Lewis, Llamau, Julie-Ann Haines, Principality, Dr Lee Campbell, Cancer Research Wales and Catryn Grundy, School of Hard Knocks Principality Building Society to extend charity support (15 April 2016)Principality members raise £20,000 for Mind Cymru at AGM vote (28 April 2014) Principality Building Society raises over £300,000 for Welsh charities About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving. Home win-winThese totals include £30,000 donated by the building society for a home win in the 2018 Six Nations at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff.Wales forward Cory Hill said: “It’s great to know that every game we have won has meant Principality donated £10,000 to these very deserving charities. After meeting and speaking to the charities I know just how much it means to them and allows them to help the people across Wales.”Julie-Ann Haines, Chief Customer Officer at Principality, said: “We know how much our Members love their rugby and the national team, so it was great to see Wales make home advantage count with victories in the Six Nations, meaning further donations to our charities from the Society.Principality staff raised funds for the three charities through various challenges, including a night walk to the Snowdon summit and sleeping rough for a night in Cardiff.Ms Haines added: “I’m immensely proud of the way we continue to support charities, and it has been totally inspiring to see colleagues go the extra mile in taking part in events and making very kind donations. We raised a lot of money in two years and I know this money means a huge amount to our charity partners and will make a significant contribution to their activities on the ground all across Wales, and to the vulnerable people they help.Formed in 1860, Principality is Wales’s largest building society, and the sixth largest building society in the UK. It has 53 branches and 18 agencies in Wales and the borders. It has assets of over £9 billion. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis9
Related Behind the art AMOC’s open-endedness makes for an audacious, engaging residency As opening night neared, there wasn’t a moment to waste. The actors onstage went through their scenes. The stage director and lighting designers peered down from the control booth, ticking through every lighting transition in the production.“Is that comfortable?” asked Madeleine Snow ’20, the stage director. Arianna Paz ’19, the lead actress in her blue Cinderella dress, agreed it was. Then she stepped into an unlit spot. “Oh man, we need to light that,” Snow said. A lighting designer, with the click of a few buttons, adjusted the beam. They all continued doggedly like this until Snow declared a lunch break. Then shortly after everyone cleared the Agassiz Theatre, a pair of technical directors stepped onstage, paintbrushes in hand, taking advantage of the moment to work on the set.These are the meticulous preparations of the Harvard College Opera, the undergraduate-run company that has mounted a full-length show each February for more than 25 years. This year’s production is a six-show run of “Cendrillon,” French composer Jules Massenet’s 1899 adaptation of the classic Cinderella fairytale.With opening night this Friday, the students have worked long hours since returning early from winter break, putting together the set, landing key notes, and stepping in wherever needed, often coming in on days when no work was scheduled.,The massive work going into “Cendrillon” reflects much of what makes the company’s productions so special and unusual: undergraduate students drawn to the arts, regardless of their experience, coming together to feed their passion while working as a team to produce a high-quality opera.“Most of the time, opportunities for undergraduates to perform opera are really limited,” said Samuel Rosner ’20, one of the lead actors in the production. “Conservatory productions tend to focus on their graduate students. … It’s so nice to have this opportunity that’s so focused on undergraduates and how they can make music together.”Since the production is entirely student-run (undergraduate cast, production team, and orchestra), the students tackle all the creative and technical work. They select the opera the previous April, conceptualize every piece of it, budget it, cast it, and stage it. During the fall, they hammer out details like choreography or props. In January, they put the show together and run full rehearsals.The company has about 80 members. As in any well-organized production company, each of them holds specific roles based on experience and interest. These range from becoming cast members to designers to producers, such as Jessica Shand ’21, who coordinates public relations. Other producers oversee set production and finances, such as deciding ticket prices.Yet just because members hold specific titles doesn’t mean their roles stop there. One of the strengths of the opera company is its culture of teamwork, especially to solve problems.“We kind of just pick up work wherever it needs to get done,” said Shand, who also plays flute for the orchestra.That willingness to jump in and help each other is almost a trademark of the company, some members said. It’s why the stage director ran through the lighting cues with some of the cast, and why the musical director, Benjamin P. Wenzelberg ’21, didn’t hesitate to help when Paz needed to adjust the train of her glitter-covered dress. And it’s why cast members were happy to help build the set after finishing rehearsals, said assistant technical director Serena Chen ’22 as she and technical director Jonathan Castillo ’21 painted part of a 16-foot platform while the cast went for lunch.“It was wonderful to see everyone collectively join together,” Castillo added.The experience helps members of the company fully understand the production process and expand their skills while also connecting with their classmates.“Being here [in January], you really watch this show develop from its very beginnings in not that long of a time,” Rosner said. “It allows us to get to know each other in a very special way. I think being so involved in the process of putting the show up allows you to fill other roles in the organization.”Snow and Wenzelberg can attest to that, as they have filled multiple roles during their time with the company. They now hold the two most important staff positions in the production. Their rise shows the opportunity there for all company members, even those new to opera.Take Ruva Chigwedere ’21, who’s playing one of Cinderella’s stepsisters. The role is her first in an opera, and she feels she’s been fully supported and welcomed.,“It’s kind of wild,” Chigwedere said. “I didn’t imagine myself at the beginning of the year, when I was auditioning, doing an opera, and I knew nothing about Harvard College Opera at all. Now to be completely immersed in the environment, it’s crazy to me. But they really look for everybody to have a part — from the production side, from the creative team, from the cast and the [orchestra] — everybody.”The welcoming nature of the company upholds its focus on making opera more accessible to the greater Harvard community. Critics have praised the annual productions for their quality and inventiveness. The company also is known for hosting smaller events throughout the year, including screenings, recitals, and solo performances. The success has helped make the company a fixture on the Harvard arts scene since 1992.Few members are more passionate then Wenzelberg, the music director. The sophomore is young, but he’s a veteran. He was a soloist and chorister with the Metropolitan Opera for eight seasons, conducted at the Boston Pops, wrote an award-winning opera, and performed with notable companies such as the New York City Opera and at prestigious venues such as the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.Wenzelberg, who attended Juilliard Pre-College as a composition major, has been passionate about singing and writing music from early childhood, even bringing it into his elementary school.“My parents got a call from my first-grade teacher, who had a notebook that was supposed to be for writing and basic grammar. … [Mine] was filled with music notes,” he said. “It’s been something that I’ve always had been in my head. I’ve always loved performing. I’ve always loved writing.”For Wenzelberg, all that passion converges in opera because the field merges many of the musical elements that he loves most. Joy in the arts and opera is the driving attraction for him, as it is for many company members. Work on productions can stretch beyond allotted schedules, sometimes well past mealtimes or into the night. There are few serious complaints, however, Wenzelberg said. The reason is simple. The students enjoy what they’re doing.“The common thread that runs between us all is that we care so much,” Wenzelberg said. “We all put our all into it and really commit to it. It doesn’t feel like work, and that’s why I love it so much. It’s something that we are all willing to do and want to do. It’s a true joy for us.”The Harvard Opera Company will perform “Cendrillon” at the Agassiz Theatre on Feb. 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, and 10. Tickets are available. A whirlwind of opera Backstage with the Lowell House Opera at Harvard
As the world commemoration of World Suicide Prevention Day, the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights is calling for more robust action against a silent pandemic that is claiming the lives of close to a million people globally each year.Noting the sacred nature of life of every human being, the commission underscores and reiterates the primacy of the respect for and protection of human rights in creating a just and more liveable country where fewer people resort to suicide as an escape from hardships.The World Health Organization estimates that 78% of global suicides occur in low and middle income countries. Furthermore, it is also the second leading cause of death among 15-29 years old globally.Get breaking news on your Mobile as-it-happens. SMS ‘NEWS’ to 20153 In Kenya, 1,442 persons were reported to have committed the crime of attempted suicide between 2015 and 2018.The Kenya National Police Service annual crime reports reveal the figures for the crime of attempted suicide is higher coming second to murder in the homicide category.According to the 2020 KNBS Economic Survey, 196 cases were reported last year. The figures also reveal that the number is four times higher for men compared to women.These figures provide a conservative picture on the magnitude of suicide since only a fraction of cases are reported while an even bigger number contemplate suicide.Mental health Kenya National Commission on Human Rights is calling on authorities to deliberately address the root cause of suicide bearing in mind the high prevalence rate, which is largely as a result of mental ill health.Also Read Govt moves to resolve land allocation dispute in East MauKenya’s Mental Health Taskforce Report revealed that mental illness accounts for 13% of the entire disease burden in Kenya.With the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic attributed to the novel Coronavirus disease, millions have been affected globally with over 14 million infections and half a million deaths as to date.This has brought about uncertainty coupled with difficult situations, including job loss and the risk of contracting the deadly virus thus posing a threat of increase in cases of mental illness.In Kenya the first Coronavirus case was reported in Nairobi by the Ministry of Health on the 12th March 2020.It was not until the government put in place precautionary measures including a curfew and lockdown (the latter having being lifted) due to an increase in the number of infections that people began feeling its effect both economically and socially.Suicide is the last resort and path of escape for individuals with unaddressed mental health needs, given the significant barriers that exist including stigma and limited access to mental health services in communities.Research has shown that structural determinants of mental ill health such as extreme poverty, lack of access to empowerment opportunities and discrimination increase the likelihood of individuals committing suicide.Also Read Uhuru calls for rebuilding of the UN to better address emerging challengesHowever, the commission decries suicide prevention measures in Kenya noting that they have often failed to address these root causes and instead incorporated fewer effective approaches including punitive measures.Section 226 of the Penal Code, for instance, criminalizes attempted suicide, causing re-victimization of already vulnerable victims and placing those who are already socially and economically disadvantaged at even greater disadvantage.Sustainable Development Goals – SDGsThus, by working to prevent suicide, the country will be edging closer to realising Vision 2030 and sustainable development goals.Under the SDGs platform, Kenya has undertaken to reduce premature mortality from non-communicable diseases through prevention and treatment, and promoting mental health and wellbeing by the year 2030.The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights therefore joins in calling upon the legislature to decriminalise attempted suicide through the repeal of section 226 of the Penal Code (Chapter 63, Laws of Kenya) and reiterates its previous calls for the fast-tracking of the Mental Health Amendment law.The Commission calls upon the government to adopt preventive holistic approach to addressing suicide, one that incorporates rights-based measures in addition to modern public health approaches.This will be achieved by addressing poverty, empowering disadvantaged sectors of society and tackling discrimination particularly for the most vulnerable groups which makes them high risk including but not limited to intersex children and adults, drug users and extremely poor households. In so doing, suicide rates will significantly reduce.Also Read SRC moves to address pay disparities Improving our healthcare facilities at the county level to detect early and address mental health disorders is key.Besides the government, every Kenyan has a role to play in preventing suicide. The centrality of community support cannot be overemphasized.Families, religious leaders, village leaders and schools all have a role to play in offering a nurturing environment conducive to prevent suicide attempts as well as appropriately responding to high-risk groups in the community; early detection and offering psychosocial interventions.These coupled with public sensitisation will help de-stigmatise suicide. The media also have an important role to play through responsible and sensitive media portrayals.The Ministry of Health in June announced that they are implementing Mental Health Policy 2015-2030 on management and treatment of addicts as well as training for healthcare workers.The policy they said will focus on substance use management, development and dissemination of information on substance use and disorder treatment protocols.It also has other elements like training of healthcare workers, service providers, Non-Governmental Organizations, community based organizations and the private sector on the prevention of substance use.Also read https://www.kbc.co.ke/mental-health-policy-treating-addicts/During this year World Suicide Prevention Day commemoration themed “Working together to prevent suicide”, the Commission is calling everyone to action to reflect on the importance of human rights and the protection of the fundamental freedoms for all.
CLEAR LAKE — The Clear Lake City Council last night approved a development agreement with JSM Investments of metro Des Moines for a hotel and conference center project to be placed in the Courtway Park subdivision northeast of the intersection of Interstate 35 and State Highway 122. The project calls for an 85-room Marriott-brand hotel with a conference and event center with space for about 450 people. As part of the development agreement, JSM agrees to enter into a minimum assessment agreement with the city fixing the minimum actual value of the property and the completed improvements to be made on the property at not less than $5 million. The agreement provides for certain property tax incentives for JSM in the form of annual appropriation, incremental property tax payments in a total amount not exceeding $1.5 million. Councilman Mike Callanan says he’s excited to see this move forward. “I think once again it’s going to be ‘if you build it, they will come’, and it’s going to prompt all kinds of economic development in our area.” Councilman Bennett Smith says the hotel and conference center will be a fantastic addition to the community. “Frankly I think it’s vital for us as a city to support this kind of economic development that really fits well with what we do here in Clear Lake with tourism and our competitive advantages with that, particularly in the midst of this economic recession to have this kind of opportunity I think is fantastic. I also agree that the success of this project will catalyze further economic development out there, and I think that will be very exciting for us.” The hotel’s scheduled completion date is June 30th of next year.