Ease-up on excessive consumption this Easter

There have been many calls of late for us to support our local businesses and tradespeople over holiday seasons; to buy South African, and to think outside of the box when it comes to our behaviour as consumers. The Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) adds its voice to these nationwide pleas and urges us all to reduce excessive Easter waste wherever possible.

Stan Jewaskiewitz, President of the IWMSA says, “On festive occasions such as Easter, we tend to purchase items we really don’t need and spend money we really don’t have in order to placate ourselves and others around us.  We feel obliged to buy into the commercialised racket that inevitably accompanies all our festivities. The human urge to celebrate and to give generously is strong and there is nothing amiss with that, however, if we stop buying into over-consumption, simply for the sake of keeping up appearances, we’ll be starting to change a mind-set which will eventually filter through to all areas of our lives, and hopefully stand the whole planet in much greater stead in the long-term.”

“As consumers, we can make a huge difference by voting with our Rands; by simply paying greater attention to our purchases. With the economy still very much in recovery and the cost of living ever-increasing, now is definitely the time to take a good long look at ourselves, and to make drastic changes in our wasteful behaviour.

Jewaskiewitz continues, “At Easter especially, our roads are congested:  in addition to general waste, more fuel is consumed because people are travelling, often in a hurry due to the short holiday period. We develop a ‘throw-away’ mentality whilst trying to cram as much as possible into the long weekend; beaches and picnic areas are once again littered with all types of waste, and of course there is an appalling excess of paper and plastic waste from a variety of visually appealing Easter ‘over-packaging’. As intelligent consumers we simply must pause to think about how we may be being duped into buying certain items, and how everything we purchase requires some form of energy to produce, often non-renewable. The question must be asked, how can we continue to justify such profligate waste?

“We, at the IWMSA encourage people to give more thought to what will most please those around them this Easter. Perhaps it will simply be the company of family and friends!  Let’s be conscious in respect of our consumption and less hedonistic in our approach. We urge South Africans to think carefully about whether they need that extra package of Easter eggs and not to purchase items that will spoil if they are not used.  At the very least, please remember to recycle whenever possible.”  Jewaskiewitz concludes.

The IWMSA focuses on providing education and training for its members, as well as other interested parties, whether private individuals or government entities.

The IWMSA is a non-profit organisation comprising a body of dedicated professionals in their respective fields, who give freely and voluntarily of their time and expertise in order to effectively educate, promote and further the science and practice of waste management.  For more information, visit: www.iwmsa.co.za

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Moot Recycling Project to create awareness in the community

Moot, PretoriaOn 16 March 2012, Hoërskool Oos-Moot and the President Kruger Children’s Home proudly launched their “Rommelskommel” multi-recycling project. Residents of the area are encouraged to support this initiative by dropping off their recyclable items at the school. All the proceeds raised by the recycling project will be split between the school and the President Kruger Children’s Home.

The Moot Rommelskommel Recycling Project, which is located on the grounds of Hoërskool Oos-Moot, comprises a drive-thru drop-off centre for all recyclable wastes including glass, paper, plastic, tins and even electronic waste. The drop-off centre will be open 24 hours a day under the watchful eyes of a security guard. A team of “green warriors”, comprising children from the school and the children’s home, will assist with the sorting of the waste and looking after the facility.

In 2011, the Central Branch of the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) was approached by the President Kruger Children’s Home to assist with setting up a recycling project at Hoërskool Oos-Moot. The reasons for starting this project were to raise environmental awareness, to teach the children responsibility and to raise funds for the Children’s Home that currently provides a safe haven for 59 children aged between two and 18.

The IWMSA embraced the opportunity to get involved from a social responsibility perspective as well as to raise awareness about recycling in the community.  Members of the Central Branch of the IWMSA voluntarily contributed their knowledge and assisted in sourcing bags, bins and a collection service for the recyclables. The IWMSA also contributed by sponsoring funds to construct a roof for the collection area which will be erected once the necessary approvals are received from the City Council.

This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view itThe IWMSA is a non-profit organisation comprising a body of dedicated professionals in their respective fields, who give freely and voluntarily of their time and expertise in order to effectively educate, promote and further the science and practice of waste management.  For more information, visit: www.iwmsa.co.za.

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ADD / ADHD Labels

ADD/ADHD can be prevented if certain behaviours are intercepted and brain training takes place from an early age. Here a group of learners from Confidence College in Pretoria are doing Edublox to improve their working memory and other cognitive skills.

It seems as if all and sundry are being diagnosed with “Attention Deficient Disorder” (ADD) or “Attention Deficient Hyperactivity Disorder” (ADHD) these days. It is all too easy to put a label on behaviours that don’t conform to the norm; what do these behaviours actually mean and what can be done to treat them?

Susan du Plessis, Director of Educational Programs at Edublox reading and learning clinic, believes that ADD/ADHD is something that can be cured or even prevented if certain behaviours are intercepted and brain training takes place from an early age.

Grade 3 learner, Jean Gilau from Pretoria, is a learner who had trouble sitting still, concentrating in class and completing any tasks given to him. Jean was not officially diagnosed with ADHD, but his teacher was adamant that he had this condition. Even though Jean’s parents were told that he would outgrow his ADHD, they faced the immediate challenge of getting their son through school. In desperation Jean’s parents took him out of a mainstream school at the end of 2011 and enrolled him in a private home-schooling school at the beginning of 2012. At the new school, Jean’s teacher encouraged Mrs Gilau to take Jean to Edublox. In February 2012, Jean was enrolled in the Edublox system. Just over a month later, Gilau has seen a significant difference in her son. “There has been a definite change in my son’s behaviour since enrolling him at Edublox,” says Gilau. “For example, he is remembering things that I tell him to do. In the past, for example, I would ask him to ask his father for something but by the time he got to his father he would have forgotten what the instructions were. These days, I can give him a whole list of things to do and he remembers everything!”

“I have seen a definite change in my son’s demeanour; he is a lot more confident and is able to concentrate on tasks at hand and deliver responsibilities on time. His new teacher can’t believe that there was ever a suggestion that he may have ADHD as he no longer displays any of the ADHD behaviours of a few months back,” says Gilau.

At Confidence College in Pretoria CBD, Principal Anelize van Eeden is faced daily with many learners that display ADHD behaviours. “It’s much too easy to pin a child’s behaviour on a specific condition such as ADD or ADHD when they don’t want to sit still, listen or concentrate.

“ADD/ADHD behaviours and symptoms can definitely be reduced with the correct inputs from the school and parents,” believes Van Eeden.

So, what can be done with learners that display ADD or ADHD behaviours? Van Eeden believes that, “Regular teacher and parent contact is critical to discuss the behaviours and possible solutions. A child’s diet is very important too as a healthy diet plays a key role in how a child behaves. Before labelling a child as having ADD/ADHD, test the child’s hearing and vision as impaired hearing or vision could also impact their behaviour.”

“At Confidence College we try to curb the ADD/ADHD-type behaviours by keeping the classes exciting. Learners can’t be expected to sit still for long periods of time so we bring in different activities and stimuli during their classes. It is important to provide the learners with structure in the classes and to enforce limits and boundaries through reminders and repetition. Praise and approval also play an important role when instilling positive behaviours.

“We are very fortunate to have the assistance of Susan du Plessis from Edublox, who freely gives of her time once a week to help learners who display ADD / ADHD-type behaviours. We have seen a great improvement in their demeanour and attitude towards school and learning. Teachers have indicated that they have seen a vast improvement in the learners’ comprehension tests and the concentration of the children has definitely improved,” Van Eeden notes.

Recent studies support the notion that many children with ADD/ADHD have impairments in cognitive skills, especially working memory. Working memory is the cognitive system responsible for the temporary storage and manipulation of information. For example: to solve an arithmetic problem like (3 X 3) + (4 X 2) in your head, you need to keep the intermediate results in mind (i.e., 3 X 3 = 9) to be able to solve the entire problem. Working memory is necessary when staying focused on a task and blocking out distractions.

Dr. Susan Gathercole, a renowned expert from the University of York, calls working memory “the engine of learning” because it has shown to be the primary indicator of academic performance. When this “engine” doesn’t “run smoothly” learners struggle to keep up with their classmates and become inattentive, tend to daydream, and develop bad attitudes. Sometimes they act out and distract other students. Boys in particular become class clowns or troublemakers. They can’t sit still or keep from talking. ADHD is diagnosed two to four times more frequently in boys than in girls.

“The good news is that, with a program like Edublox, cognitive skills can be strengthened and learning challenges can be conquered,” says du Plessis.

Educational psychologist Dr Lee de Lorge in Ohio, USA recently completed an 18-month study on an Edublox program. There were 67 students between the ages of five and 18 who participated. The disabilities of the participants consisted of ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, dyscalculia, and non-specific learning disabilities. The results indicated that 94% of the students showed significant growth and improvement through the use of the program. 35 of the 67 students had ADD or ADHD and showed a combined increase of 52,45% ― from a 37,24% pre-test average to a 89,96% post-test average.

“Originally I had some concerns that the program was more about repetition and not multi-sensory. I was more than pleasantly surprised that it is very multi-sensory and believe that the visual processing/working memory aspect connected to this multi-sensory program is its strength,” de Lorge stated.

For more information on Edublox contact: Susan du Plessis on (012) 345-1480 / susan@edublox.com or visit www.edublox.co.za  High resolution photos available.

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More about Edublox

The Edublox methodology is based on 30 years’ practical experience combined with 50 years of intensive research about reading and learning. Edublox have helped learners in South Africa as well as internationally and certain Edublox products are exported to eight countries worldwide. The latest and best technologies are presented at the Edublox clinics. Edublox sharpens attention and concentration, develops accurate perception, improves memory and promotes logical thinking as well as improving reading, spelling and writing. Even learners who are seriously dyslexic can be helped to overcome their problems completely.

RAIN Water for Schools: Homba Primary School, Khayelitsha

 

Photo caption: Learners from Homba Primary School in Khayelitsha can now enjoy cool water during a hot morning break between classes thanks to Coca-Cola South Africa’s legacy project entitled RAIN (Replenish Africa Initiative) Water for Schools. Homba Primary is one of a growing number of schools that has benefited from the RAIN Water for Schools project in South Africa. The Coca-Cola Company’s RAIN programme aims to improve access to clean water for 2 million Africans by 2015 through a $30 million investment in programmes such as the one in South Africa. Working together with the government, Coca-Cola South Africa is providing schools in disadvantaged areas across the country with basic water and sanitation infrastructure such as working toilets and urinals, taps with drinking water in and around the school area, drainage systems and new basins and taps. The infrastructure upgrades implemented in schools varies according to their individual needs as assessed by the Department of Basic Education.

“We started the RAIN Water for Schools project in 2010, with nine schools as our legacy project for the 2010 FIFA World Cup,” says Sammy Mohlaoli, Senior Manager, Community Affairs at Coca-Cola South Africa. “Since then we have identified a total of 100 schools in all nine provinces that are in dire need of basic water and sanitation.”

“Without running water there are many health risks that communities, especially learners, are faced with,” says Denise Green, Manager of Corporate Social Investment Projects at Peninsula Beverages (PenBev), the local bottler of The Coca-Cola Company’s products in the Western and Northern Cape. “We are glad to be associated with the RAIN Water for Schools Initiative and to have the opportunity of providing clean water and sanitation whilst educating learners about health, hygiene and the importance of saving water.”

The Coca-Cola Company’s RAIN Water for Schools initiative is a three-year initiative that will be funded and implemented by The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation working with a number of co-finance and implementing partners that include the Global Environment and Technical Foundation, Re-Solve Consulting, the Mvula Trust and the South African Department of Education.

Patrick Katsha, Deputy Principal of Homba Primary School says, “We are incredibly grateful for Coca-Cola’s contribution to uplifting the standards of our school. Not only have some serious health hazards been averted, but our learners also are learning about the importance of basic hygiene whilst simultaneously becoming conscious of the importance of saving water.”

The 22nd of March is World Water Day. This year’s focus is specifically on water and food security. As part of the Homba Primary School RAIN Water for Schools project, rain water is collected by the school and used to water a vegetable garden which is maintained by women from the local community. The produce grown in this garden is sold, providing economic empowerment for these women.

For more information on PenBev and the community projects that they are involved with, visit www.penbev.co.za or call 021 936 5500

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KZN how green are you?

Industries across KwaZulu Natal are invited to enter the prestigious Waste Management Awards 2012. The Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) is reminding organisations and suppliers that there is only a short time left to send in applications for the IWMSA Waste Management Awards for Environmental Excellence 2012.

The IWMSA’s KwaZulu Natal branch in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs (DAEA) are delighted to support organisations that share their ambitions of “zero waste to landfill” and help deliver the 3R’s – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle across KZN to see who is the greenest in the Province.

Dr. Timothy Fasheun, Senior Manager at DAEA says, “we are pleased to yet again be partnering with the IWMSA to implement the Waste Management Awards. The Department views these Awards as a proactive way to encourage industries and businesses to improve their waste management practices. The Department is also fully involved with the judging of entrants so as to capacitate officials of the Department with respect to waste management systems in different sectors. We encourage all industries and businesses to take advantage of this opportunity to showcase their achievements in waste management, to gain from the experience of being assessed by waste management professionals, and to benchmark their waste management practices against others in the sector.”

Pat Reddy, the Chairman of the IWMSA KZN Branch says, “It is great to see so many organisations getting involved. The IWMSA supports and acknowledges businesses, industries and individuals that are striving to make a change for the better and our awards are an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of, and reward, best practice.” We are encouraging organisations throughout KZN to enter the Waste Management Awards for 2012. With the increased pressure on companies to comply with the New Waste Act and to be environmentally more conscious, we see the Waste Management Awards as a great way to share good ideas, get recognition for hard work and celebrate environmental action.” Reddy continues, “Very often the focus is on what is wrong in the environment. We are pleased to support organisations that will not only benefit the environment, but also as previous organisations have demonstrated bring many positives to communities in KZN. Working in partnership with DAEA will bring KZN a step closer to zero waste to landfill.”

Reddy adds, “the aim of the awards is to celebrate organisations’ green credentials by paying tribute to the great and green. In 2010 the competition saw many high profile quality submissions, and IWMSA is expecting more of the same this year. Organisations are encouraged to also nominate their suppliers in this year’s awards which will contribute in building sustainable business relationships. We are challenging organisations to set an example for the rest of South Africa.”

Reddy continues, “These awards aren’t about creating winners and losers. Everyone that is working towards a greener life is instantly a winner. We feel that these awards are a fitting way to recognise those organisations that really are trying to make a difference to the environment in the course of their day-to-day business.”

The main objectives of the awards are to promote responsible practice in the use of resources and environmental management, to encourage the waste hierarchy (3 R’s) as well as to encourage alternative methods to avoid dependence on landfill sites.

The bi-annual Waste Management Awards aim to recognize businesses of all sizes and sectors, employing good environmental practice in their daily activity, while also making significant financial savings.

The full criteria for each award and nomination/application details are available on www.iwmsa.co.za and the closing date for all applications is 30 June 2012. The judging includes a site visit and audit by professional members of the IWMSA, as well as employees of the DAEA and other government departments.

The IWMSA is a non-profit organisation comprising a body of dedicated professionals in their respective fields, who give freely and voluntarily of their time and expertise in order to effectively educate, promote and further the science and practice of waste management.  For more information contact the IWMSA’s KwaZulu Natal branch at: (031) 564 2795, e-mail: kzn@iwmsa.co.za or visit www.iwmsa.co.za

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Water: Without it, we will not eat

This year, World Water Day is celebrated on 22 March and will be focussing specifically on water and food security. The Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) wants to emphasise the fact that we need to pay special attention to the sustainable management of our freshwater resources, especially in terms of our tenuous hold on food security.

Stan Jewaskiewitz, President of the IWMSA says “As in many areas of our excessively consumer orientated lifestyles, we seldom stop to think about what water resources are used in the production of our food. For instance, whilst around 1,500 litres of water is used in the production of one kilogram of wheat, ten times that amount, or 15,000 litres of water is used to produce one kilogram of beef. It takes a substantial amount of water to produce the food crops required to feed herds of farmed animals, as well as to process the produce from those animals, such as milk and cheese, and there is an ever increasing demand for meat.

“Other factors in farming which eventually impact on water supply are contamination in the form of chemical pesticides, for example, which are often overused, and farming’s contribution to the problem of climate change especially in respect of damaging greenhouse gases. Climate change has far-reaching effects in weather extremes such as severe drought or flooding, especially in certain ecologically sensitive areas.”

The United Nations (UN) has decided to focus on the theme of Water and Food Security for World Water Day this year, a theme wholeheartedly endorsed by the IWMSA. Jewaskiewitz continues, “There is a huge demand to feed the 7 billion people that currently inhabit planet earth and with another 2 billion set to join us by 2050, the demand for food will, of necessity, spiral upwards at an alarming rate.  The presently frightening scenario is that famine stricken countries and starving people notwithstanding, around 30% or almost one third of the world’s food production is consigned to waste.   Many factors contribute to this loss, including loss at source or in transportation from the fields, as well as ultimately, and far too often, the end consumer who is wasteful as a result of not being aware of the processes required to produce their consumables.”

So how can we help?  We simply have to cut back on our excessive food waste by changing our attitudes as consumers and becoming more aware of cause and effect: we need to pay attention to how and what we consume, make better food choices and avoid wastage at all cost. Commercially, crop diversity and integrated farming methods need to be explored. One such fascinating example is the integration of rice and fish farming in the paddy fields of Asia which is proving extremely effective on a number of levels.  All possible options need to be explored in a bid to sustain us into the future.

The IWMSA focuses on providing education and training for its members, as well as other interested parties, whether private individuals or government entities.

The IWMSA is a non-profit organisation comprising a body of dedicated professionals in their respective fields, who give freely and voluntarily of their time and expertise in order to effectively educate, promote and further the science and practice of waste management.  For more information, visit: www.iwmsa.co.za

More information on International World Water Day (www.unwater.org/worldwaterday)

International World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). The United Nations General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day.

Each year, World Water Day highlights a specific aspect of freshwater.

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The Inside Scoop as PenBev prepares for the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour

Peninsula Beverage Company (PenBev), local bottler of The Coca-Cola Company’s products, are eager to announce that they will once again be the exclusive non-alcoholic beverage partner for the iconic Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour taking place on Sunday, 11 March 2012.

When Coca-Cola in Cape Town (PenBev) sends its fleet on the road for the Cycle Tour the whole process is planned like a military operation. On the eve prior to the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour, the fleet of 10-tonne and five-tonne trucks roll out of PenBev’s Parow Industria headquarters to deliver the 55,000 litres of Coca-Cola, 60,000 litres of water and 50,000 litres of Powerade, that will keep the 35,000 cyclists hydrated throughout the Tour.

Planning for the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour begins weeks before the actual event. Logistics are assessed and decisions are made regarding the required numbers of tables, gazebos, sampling cups and trucks that will be needed to ensure that everything runs as smoothly as possible on the day.

On the day of the race, a team of 500 staff members and 35 trucks are deployed to be ready and waiting by the time the first cyclist hits the road. PenBev supplies 15 refreshment stations along the route which are manned by volunteers via sponsored points and assisted by Coca-Cola staff and supported by Rotarians who volunteer their time.

Through their partnership with the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour, Coca-Cola Cape Town (PenBev) is committed to promoting healthy lifestyles. “We have been part of the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour since inception and, for PenBev, it is a very important part of our business,” says Sports Asset Manager Richard Berrill. “Apart from the cyclists on the day, we probably connect with up to 400,000 people in the week leading up to the event. We are proud to partner with the Cycle Tour because it’s an important part of the South African sporting calendar and part of Cape Town’s heritage.”

Through their corporate social investment strategy, PenBev, Bottler of the products of The Coca-Cola Company in the Western and Northern Cape, are devoted to making a positive difference in the communities they serve. For the past 50 years PenBev together with Coca-Cola have been involved in various community projects and to date 28 such projects have been opened, ranging from Day care and Educare centres to crèches and places of safety across the Western & Northern Cape market.

Berrill adds, “We are proud to be associated with the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour which also gives back to the community by distributing funds towards cycling development and a number of charitable projects under the auspices of the Rotary Club of Claremont and the Pedal Power Association.”

The Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour week’s activities include the Columbia Grape Escape, Cape Argus Pick n Pay Mountain Bike Challenge, Cape Argus Pick n Pay Lifecycle Expo, Cape Argus Pick n Pay Trike and Junior Tour and then the main event being the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour taking place on Sunday, 11 March 2012.

PenBev is an independent bottling company that holds the rights to manufacture and distribute the products of The Coca-Cola Company within the Western and Northern Cape.

For more information on PenBev and their CSI activities contact Denise Green at PenBev on 021 936 5500 or visit www.penbev.co.za.  For more information on the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour visit www.cycletour.co.za.

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