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Airtel funds project to boost farming in Uganda

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Accra (Ghana): Indian telecommunication giant Airtel is spending $672,000 to support a project to provide timely weather reports to small-scale farmers in Uganda to boost their farming activities, it was announced on Sunday.

Airtel was backing the project undertaken by the Trans Africa Hydro Meteorological Observatory (TAHMO).

“Based on similar activities, in terms of information dissemination, in Malawi and Madagascar,” TAHMO’s co-director Nick van de Giesen told IANS that Airtel was contributing this time to provide important weather information to farmers in Uganda.

The project is also backed by research that shows that African weather was poorly monitored, especially for forecast purposes. TAHMO also has found out that most African societies were vulnerable to extreme weather events.

The organisation, therefore, is helping to make good predictions about rainfall as well as provide information on how much water vapour the atmosphere contains, van de Giesen said.

Admitting that changing weather patterns have been the bane of farming across the African continent, he said TAHMO was helping to “produce early warnings for heavy weather”.

He said:normal weather predictions will improve with better observations and this helps to plan short term farming operations such as planting and fertilising, in addition, detailed weather data allow for weather-index-based micro crop insurance, in which payments depend on nearby measurements.”

Since most of the farmers are illiterates, he said, “the phone messages are actually spoken messages in the relevant local language. So, as long as the farmers or fishermen know how to use a mobile phone, they can receive the messages by simply listening in.”

“We did a small trial pilot in local Luganda language during the preparation phase.”

Using the Global Navigation Satellite System, TAHMO was hoping to improve on rainfall predictions as well as measure the extra delay caused by moisture in the atmosphere

(Francis Kokutse, IANS)
( Photo Credit: www.gizbot.com) 

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Are you Traveling in Monsoon? Follow these Tips to look Stylish!

If you are planning for traveling in this rainy season here are some tips to get ready and style yourself

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Monsoon style
Traveling in monsoon season.Follow these Tips to look Stylish. Pixabay

New Delhi, August 13, 2017: 

“Experience is not What happens to you. It is what you do with what happens to you.” – Aldous Huxley

Everyone loves to travel during monsoon, but looking stylish and maintaining comfort in the rainy season remains a major concern for most of them.

Traveling in this season can make your best ever memories for your entire life. As you can bask in the fascinating sunlight or enjoy the cold and calm darkness of the monsoon. Also, touch and feel the verdant greenery that is spread everywhere and vibrant culture of the places that come alive during the monsoons.

There is no denying that monsoon makes the process of packing one’s bag much more complex but don’t worry, here with some easy and quirky tips that will ease your concerns and let you enjoy the tour-


MEN

  • Pack more linen clothes

Men always search for something comfortable so you can definitely try linen plain shirts or T-shirts and there is nothing more relaxing than this even you can also team them up with denim printed jackets.

T-shirt
Man in T-shirt. Pixabay
  • Carry shorts, capris

Shorts and capris are so attractive and easy to wear, easy to carry and also look fantastic.

Capris
Man wearing shorts. Pixabay

 ALSO READ: Here are 4 Ways to Carefree, Happy Feet in Monsoon!

  • Go out with lightweight waterproof bag

Just carry a lightweight waterproof luggage bag with all your belonging in it, especially a plastic bag for your cell-phone assets.

Lightweight bag
Lightweight bag. Pixabay
  • Monsoon accessories for safety and style

Monsoon accessories such as hat looks funky and stylish and also protect your hair from sun, dust, and pollution. A waterproof wrist watch makes look you stunning, use a sunglass to protect your eyes. Team it up with a scarf and make a style statement of your own.

Monsoon accessories
Monsoon accessories. Pixabay

 


WOMEN

 

  • Carry light weighted colorful fabrics
colorful fabrics
A woman donning colorful fabrics. Pixabay

Women can try refreshing light fabrics, like cotton, chiffon, silk that dries out quickly. Your clothes must be bright colored such as, yellow, orange, pink, red, blue and some context of mixtures like fluorescent and magnified colors will enhance your style.

  • Palazzos let you feel comfortable

Two bottoms (shorts, palazzos) will offer utmost comfort, also keep one stretchable denim pant. This funky look will definitely win hearts wherever you go.

Denim
Girl wearing stretchable denim. Pixabay
  • Must carry a long sleeved top

Sum up your clothing with minimum outfits and carry one long sleeve that will protect your skin from tanning and mosquitos. One sleeveless top, a crop top for shorts- will give you bold look and colorful jackets that are reversible.

Monsoon style
Girl donning full sleeve top. Pixabay
  • Accessories add to your style

Accessories like a jelly umbrella, comfortable footwears (avoid flat and shoe), belt, scarves, sunglasses, and junk jewelry will add to your style and will surely turn heads wherever you go.

scarves, sunglasses,
Girl wearing scarves and Sunglass. Pixabay

 

 

– by Nidhi Singh of NewsGram. Twitter @NidhiSuryavansi

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Ham Radio Operators to help Check Fishermen along West Bengal coast receive Weather Updates in the deep seas

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A fisherman in India (representational image), Wikimedia

Kolkata, May 11, 2017: Ham radio operators will help check whether fishermen along West Bengal coast receive weather updates via radio broadcast in the deep seas, an operator said on Thursday.

A joint inspection for measuring the signal strength of All India Radio broadcast in the deep seas will be held on May 14 and 15 by the Coast Guard, AIR, state fisheries department, fishermen’s association, and ham radio operators.

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“Around a year back, 39 fishermen went missing in the deep sea. The reason was they didn’t hear the weather report on radio. We will investigate whether they are receiving these important transmissions,” Ambarish Nag Biswas of the West Bengal Radio Club (Amateur Club) said.

Through ham radio one can talk across cities, around the world, or even into space, all without the internet or cell phones. Ham radio operators or hams can swing into action in times of disaster, when regular communications channels fail, and assist disaster management agencies.

Biswas said the hams will also educate the fishermen on using the Very High Frequency (VHF) radio.

“Although every fishing vessel has a VHF Radio, due to lack of knowledge they are not maintained properly,” he said. (IANS)

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Girls in Uganda Make Reusable Sanitary Pads to Stay in School

During the 2016 election campaign, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni pledged to buy sanitary towels for girls in need; but the Government lacks fund

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Girls at the Parents Care Infant Academy, including 14-year-old Catherine Nantume, are sewing a reusable sanitary towel in Makindye Kampala, VOA

Kampala, April 8, 2017: Providing sanitary pads to schoolgirls is a controversial subject in Uganda.

During the 2016 election campaign, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni pledged to buy sanitary towels for girls in need. The government estimates that 30 percent of Ugandan girls from poor families miss school because of lack of sanitary towels.

But in February this year, the first lady, who is also the minister for education, told parliament the government didn’t have enough funding for the president’s $4.4 million initiative.

This angered Makerere University researcher Stella Nyanzi, who created Pads for Girls Uganda on the social media site Facebook to collect donations of sanitary towels. Soon, however, she found herself in a police interrogation room accused of insulting the first lady online.

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“The interrogation was about four hours,” Nyanzi said. “By the time I was out, my sister, who had my mobile phone number, said, ‘By the way, you are almost getting to your one million pads.’ The following day was Women’s Day and, surprisingly, we got one million sanitary pads within two days.”

Nyanzi continues to push the government to make sanitary pads for girls a priority. Public debate about the subject continues, and the government recently announced that sanitary pads are now to be sold free of value-added tax.

Girls at the Parents Care Infant Academy, in the slum area of Makindye, have taken matters into their own hands.

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At the back of the class, there are four sewing machines that students use to make reusable sanitary towels. Large pieces of pink cloth are laid on the table as some of the girls carefully measure and cut, then place a piece of cotton in between and stitch with pins. Ready to be sewn, it is then passed onto the tailors, who include 14-year-old Nantume Catherine.

“Oh, this hole, it’s used to put there cotton, that cotton to hold blood to not come out. You remove it, you throw and you wash it through this hole,” she said.

Sarah Sanyu is the headmistress of the school.

“It was very, very difficult for these girls to stay in public without having these pads,” Sanyu said, “so when we got this idea of making sanitary pads, we bought the materials for ourselves, then we got someone to come and teach us.”

The school also held a special class to teach the girls about menstruation.

Some question the cleanliness of reusable pads, but health officials assure VOA they are safe if properly washed with soap and water. However, access to clean water is not a guarantee in some parts of Uganda.

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So important are sanitary pads to keeping girls in school that the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) has distributed 50,000 disposable pads in 14 districts of Uganda since November of 2015.

“It has been very difficult to keep girls in schools, especially in Karamoja, where they have to use leaves,” said Dr. Edson Herbert Muhwezi, assistant representative at UNFPA Uganda. “There are no rags to use, some of them even sit in the sun hoping to dry. They are kept there isolated, staying four days and nights in the bush. It’s really dehumanizing.”

Nyanzi says that is unacceptable. She visits schools to pass out the pads donated to her  Facebook group, urging the girls not to let their circumstances hold them down. (VOA)