“A angel was born one week ago, one that came into this world still and unresponsive. After a mere touch from the palm of my fingers, she yawned and took her first breath of air.”September 1, 2015- the incredible story of a newborn, her mother and how the two are learning to come together has inspired the Daily Observer to highlight the narrative behind this family.The family has asked that their neither names nor location be published.Miracle, as she’s known, was born on September 1, 2015 under strenuous conditions; she is one to two months premature.Her 16-year-old mother Stevenia appeared to be six or seven months pregnant prior to giving birth to Miracle. According to witnesses, Stevenia was unaware that she was in labor that morning. Therefore, Miracle was delivered on a cold ground, alone.“This girl is brave oh,” her aunty Beatrice stated. “When we asked her who the man is that got her pregnant, she can’t talk. Even to tell us that she was in pain, she didn’t tell us. I walked in and saw her straining and helped her remove her pants. I was shocked to see a baby inside them,” A neighbor says that they overheard Beatrice crying for help the morning of Miracle’s birth and decided to assist the bleeding mother and child. According to the neighbor who has also asked to stay anonymous, the moment they entered into the bedroom of Miracle and her mother, they saw what appeared to be a still-born baby lying near her placenta and umbilical cord, lifeless.Two to three feet away from Miracle sat Stevenia, who seemed unacquainted with what had just happened to her body and to the lifeless form in front of her.“I heard that the mother was pregnant but she denied it until her stomach started getting big last month. We were all in doubt until now. When I walked into the room and saw Stevenia sitting up, I asked her what had happened because blood was all around her and her bottom half was naked. In front of her was a baby that came too soon and the mother was terrified of looking at it,” our reporter stated.According to the neighbor, a man no one has yet to identify is said to have sexually molested Stevenia prior to her giving birth. In as much, Stevenia is partially disabled and an orphan, challenges that have caused her to behave reclusively.Since the age of three, Stevenia has been living with her late father’s relatives who have all tried to assist the limping teen. They have been showing support.Meanwhile, at birth, Miracle showed no vital signs, until the neighbor made contact.“After a mere touch from the palm of my fingers, she yawned and took her first breath of air. I tapped her buttocks a couple of times and decided to straighten her umbilical cord that had tangled in her mother’s pants during labor. I noticed that it had a pulse and immediately as I straightened it, Miracle started responding,” she added.At the moment, Stevenia has been trying – learning – to do the motherly things such as breastfeeding, a routine that her aunt Beatrice has to assist in. Most often, Stevenia stays clear of her baby, when asked why, she smiles and shrugs her shoulders.“Presently we keep Miracle in the room wrapped up and heated. We don’t allow anyone to touch her, nor do we bring her outside. The baby doesn’t have anything, she’s everybody’s child since she doesn’t have a father. Thanks to the neighbor who also named the child, Miracle is still living so far,” Beatrice mentioned.In the meantime, it has been a tough week for mother and child. Due to the lack of funds and resources, Miracle has yet to be registered or taken to a hospital for a check up. Stevenia is also in need of medical attention.‘Car pay to carry both mother and child is not available. Secondly, the child is too fragile to move now, so if we had someone to come here and help us look at Miracle, that would be the best thing for us,” stated Beatrice.The family is appealing for immediate help to help keep Miracle alive. They are also in search for food, which they claim the mother’s breast milk may not be suitable for the premature one.Anyone wanting to help or reach out to this family is asked to call the following numbers: 0775886852 or 0777472772. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
The second is to improve the quality of instruction by ensuring that teachers throughout the country, both rural and urban, have access to the highest quality teaching resources. Several local and international ICT companies have teamed up with the Department of Basic Education to launch the Vodacom Mobile Education Programme, which enables teachers across South Africa to use mobile technology to access resources to improve their teaching. “Through this initiative, teachers will now be able to use cloud computing to access vital content, teacher-aids and resources to help deliver quality education.” “This launch is perhaps one of the most important initiatives that we have introduced,” said Uys. “It involves a significant investment in our youth, who are the future of our country, and is a critical component of our commitment to using mobiles for good. SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material The programme has two objectives: one is to use mobile technology to help the Department of Basic Education meet its objective of ensuring that a significant number of learners have exposure to information and communications technology. Provincial ICT resource centres Training will focus on ICT literacy, as well as the effective use and integration of digital content in the classroom. To support this training, educators are provided with the necessary ICT infrastructure and tools. Cisco is providing computer technician certification and entrepreneurship training through its Cisco Networking Academy programme, and Mindset Learn has made the South African educational curriculum content available throughout the programme. “We are absolutely committed to helping Government improve on the quality of education in our schools,” Vodacom CEO Pieter Uys said at the launch of the programme last week. “The Vodacom Mobile Education Programme is our most ambitious project, but it is also the most important. The programme, which is being rolled out by Vodacom in partnership with companies such as Microsoft, Cisco and Mindset Learn, focuses especially on mathematics and physical science, two of the most challenging subjects for learners in South Africa. ICT literacy training “It not only levels the playing field for rural schools that often don’t have access to the same quality of teaching material that urban schools have, but it also ensures that schools, teachers, learners and communities have access to ICT and the internet.” The ICT Resource Centres themselves are connected through a virtual private network (VPN) to Vodacom’s head office in Midrand, Johannesburg. This connection serves as a pipeline of information, connecting the centres, participating schools and teachers to the Internet and to valuable teacher training resources. Microsoft will be supplying its Partners in Learning teacher professional development curriculum software and Microsoft certification for teachers and the public. 24 October 2011 As part of the launch, the partners have created an ICT Resource Centre in each province, each serving up to 200 schools. The centres serve as the district teacher-training hub and are outfitted with computer classrooms with 50 terminals and an internet cafe. “This initiative is the first of its kind in the ICT environment,” said Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. “It has the support of my department and the nine provincial education departments and I am sure it will go a long way in addressing the ICT challenges we have in education.”
Fairtrade is a common-good philosophy that aids better trading conditions for producers and the export of their products (particularly in Africa). In addition, it promotes sustainability associated with trade and in the manufacturing sector. It works by holding both manufacturer and consumer to higher social and environmental standards. While most (96%) Fairtrade products are agricultural goods, such as coffee, cocoa, bananas, cotton, sugar and flowers, others with Fairtrade certification include clothing, cosmetics, gold and consumable goods, such as soft drinks, wine and ice cream. (Image: Creative Commons)• Cadbury Fairtrade choc now in South Africa• Projects aim to empower women in agriculture• Africa dismantling trade barriers • Africa has huge growth potential for e-commerce CD AndersonWhat is Fairtrade? Fairtrade is a non-governmental organisation that sources and co-ordinates the ethical certification of products and their producers. It is aimed at promoting equality and sustainability in farming sectors in the developing world, including Africa, Middle East and South America.Dating back to the 1960s, Fairtrade began with small initiatives by individuals and communities who wanted to make a difference in developing countries. They sought to buy their products in an ethical manner, through paying fair prices, establishing direct trading partnerships with these producers and sharing knowledge and information on production, market and quality requirements.In the 21st century, the Fairtrade philosophy has become a worldwide trend, with Fairtrade practices on every continent, in all regions.Fairtrade is finding traction in Africa and South Africa, where support for local farmers and small-scale is a meaningful contributor to employment and the economy. Throughout the process, from the labour used to manufacture the products, the contents of the products and the selling mechanisms used to market the final product, Fairtrade promotes the equality and sustainability of small-scale agriculture, trade and manufacturing.Infographic by Sifiso Nkabinde What products are Fairtrade? A product that carries the Fairtrade certification stamp has met the organisation’s rigorous standards. These insist that profits from the sale of Fairtrade goods must be worked back to producers and farmers to improve labour conditions, promote sustainable, environmentally friendly farming and manufacturing techniques, and invest back into the business and its people.While most (96%) Fairtrade products are agricultural goods, such as coffee, cocoa, bananas, cotton, sugar and flowers, they include clothing, cosmetics and beauty products, gold and consumable goods, such as soft drinks, wine and ice cream.Popular companies that produce or use Fairtrade products in their manufacturing include American ice cream company Ben & Jerry’s, chocolatier Cadbury’s and over 100 global clothing retailers. In South Africa, Fairtrade products made locally and from Africa include Ciro coffee, Cadbury’s and several established and emerging wine farms, including Fairvalley, House of Mandela and Palesa. Fairtrade products are available from Woolworths – one of Brand South Africa’s 2015 Top 10 Most Valuable Brands – selected specialist food stores and some larger retail supermarkets.Fairtrade quick facts • More than half the bananas sold in Switzerland are products of Fairtrade.• A quarter of all flowers sold in Germany are sourced by Fairtrade.• While the hallmark of Fairtrade has been the export from source country to another region, over the last four years there has been an increase in domestic sales, keeping the Fairtrade cycle local.• Demand for Fairtrade products is growing exponentially in Brazil, India and Kenya.Source: Fairtrade South Africa The business of Fairtrade: the triple bottom line Fairtrade is based on the non-traditional commercial framework of the triple bottom line. Unlike the more traditional profit or loss bottom line, it looks at three levels of impact of products manufactured, marketed and sold: social, environmental and financial.Simply, Fairtrade focuses on items that prioritise the people behind the product, followed by the positive impact the manufacture and consumption of the product has on the environment, and then on whether a profit is made from the product.In South Africa, the triple bottom line means that what is produced from the business, goes back into the operation at all levels. Profits are used to attend to the educational and social needs of the workers: schooling, housing, social awareness, health and welfare. This, in turn, leads to more sustained job creation and employment security.This philosophy falls in line with the ideals of South Africa’s National Development Plan, particularly in the areas of social cohesion, creating more inclusive economies and encouraging active citizenry. Infographic by Sifiso Nkabinde
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