#TheBahamas, March 27, 2023 – Situated on a Cay of its own, the LJM Maritime Academy (LJMMA) is the Bahamas’ only school of its kind and with sponsorships from Campbell Shipping, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Carnival Cruises, Disney Cruises, and more it boasts an extremely well-equipped campus. The Turks and Caicos Community College (TCICC) is now partnering with the LJMMA to bring those amenities to TCI students through TCICC.
Brendamae Cleare, President of the institution, joined in on a maritime stakeholder meeting introducing the partnership to the Turks and Caicos’ residents on Tuesday, March 21, detailing everything that the LJMMA had to offer.
The simulator building was commissioned to the tune of $30 million and is only in phase one. Also included alongside the fancy simulators, which give students hands-on experience with the boat engines and cranes that they will work with in the future, there are temporary administrative offices, libraries, nurse’s stations and more.
Other buildings on the Cay include, a firefighting simulator and the school even has lifeboat simulators, which mimic what it would be like pushing the lifeboat off the side of a huge vessel and maneuvering it in the ocean.
The Maritime Academy was birthed in 2011 when executives at Campbell Shipping including Lowell J. Mortimer (which is the only Bahamian-owned shipping company Cleare says), realized that there were no Bahamians working on their ships and were determined to change that.
“We had the college of the Bahamas, which is now the University of the Bahamas. We had a technical and vocational institution. We had banking and tourism colleges, but nothing like maritime but [we said] why not maritime?”
And the LJMMA so was born, named after its founder Mortimer. In its first year, it fielded over 180 applications and accepted just over 40 students. It is semi-regimented, which means strict rules for students, just as they would have to abide by on vessels.
The institution is accredited by the National Accreditation and Equivalency Council of the Bahamas, the Bahamas Maritime Authority, the Institute of Materials, Minerals, Mining and others.
Cleare said the vision of the school was to become a globally recognized institution of excellence, in maritime education and training.
Haiti inflation increase, food prices more
#Haiti, November 27, 2023 – Haiti’s food security is being worsened by recent inflation levels, according to the Haitian Institute of Statistics and Informatics (IHSI).
This comes as the institute informed that “a shape acceleration in inflation was recorded on a monthly basis” referring to the measurements for October.
It said the General Consumer Price Index (CPI, 100 in 2017–2018) went up by 3.4 percent in October of the year, compared to 2.3 percent in October.
Consequently, food prices between September and October increased by 4.8 percent, more than double normal prices, says ProEco Haiti, an economic consultant, as it informed it is concerned that this risks the worsening of the food situation in the country.
ProEco points out that this increase in prices is in the first month of the 2023-2024 fiscal year and is due to the closure of the land border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic, not to mention the fact that Luis Abinader, President of the Dominican Republic, unilaterally announced the complete closure of the border on September 15th, 2023.
Now, considering this, as ProEco expressed, the increase in prices is due to the border closing, as Haiti is dependent on the Dominican Republic. However, the economy consultant urges the public and private sectors to work to diversify the country’s commercial partners, reducing its dependence on the neighboring republic while mitigating the effects on its economy of possible crises between the two countries.
Furthermore, despite the fact that inflation increased in October, the IHSI revealed that there is not just bad news, as there is some level of progress for the republic as the deceleration of prices at an annual rate has been seen. It said inflation in October 2023 stood at 22.8 percent, the lowest reached since October 2021. Additionally, ProEco added to this fact, saying that annual inflation was 31.8 percent in September 2023.
The Project IDEA Media Club programme returns for Part II
Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands, October 30, 2023 – After launching in June 2023, the ambitious Project IDEA Media Club by the TCI Sports Commission is back for Part II.
Students in Part I of the programme, were afforded an opportunity to create a short film and a mini-documentary using industry-grade equipment and exposing themselves to a wealth of knowledge. Class segments offered were Filmmaking, Content Creation and Photography. Project IDEA members were immersed in the world of sports media, producing short-form video content for social media, photographing live games and utilising presenting skills. The short film ‘Ripple Effect’ is scheduled to premiere at the Turks and Caicos International Film Festival in November.
Project IDEA was created for high-school and university students or professionals aged 14-21 interested in photography, design or videography. At the end of the programme, all members will have created content to add to a design portfolio, which can be used for entry to university and prospective creative job roles.
In Part II, the class segments have been restructured to offer Journalism with Content Creation and Photography. The Journalism class will be producing a contemporary Sports News programme, also capturing activities in the wider communities. Project IDEA runs in 3-month batches, with classes every other week, giving ample time for learning and execution.
Applications are now open!
Application Portal Closes: November 18, 2023
Club Duration: November 22, 2023 – January 26, 2024 (Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm. Breaks for Christmas)
APPLY NOW: https://forms.office.com/r/cYE1TbzSX7 (In-person applications can be submitted at the Gustarvus Lightbourne Sports Complex)
For more information contact Media & Communications Specialist Nandina Hislop email@example.com.
90% of strokes are avoidable with a few lifestyle changes!
Cleveland Clinic Expert Shares Six Simple Steps to Prevent Vast Majority of Strokes
According to the World Stroke Organization (WSO), stroke is the leading cause of disability worldwide. The WSO says one in four people will have a stroke in their lifetimes, and each year over 12 million people worldwide have strokes. However, it adds that 90% of strokes are preventable by addressing a small number of risk factors that are responsible for most strokes. In The Bahamas, on average 224 people (or 9.56%) die annually from strokes.
Here, Andrew Russman, DO, Medical Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Comprehensive Stroke Center and a vascular neurology specialist, offers advice on how to reduce stroke risk by better managing existing health conditions and also through implementing lifestyle changes. “These tips are interrelated as most of the lifestyle changes mentioned also play a role in improving management of hypertension, high cholesterol and diabetes, which all increase stroke risk,” Dr. Russman points out.
- Reduce hypertension
Uncontrolled hypertension – that is, blood pressure that is consistently above 130/80 – is the single most important modifiable risk factor in stroke worldwide, says Dr. Russman.
Aside from medication, an important step in reducing blood pressure is to reduce salt intake, which Dr. Russman says is good advice even if you don’t have high blood pressure. “We recommend consuming no more than 2g of salt per day. I advise my patients to check food labels and nutritional websites for sodium levels as their intake is usually far higher than they realize,” he adds.
- Be wary of diabetes
It is important to be tested for diabetes, and if diagnosed, to manage the condition well, says Dr. Russman. He explains that diabetes causes narrowing of small, medium and large blood vessels in the body, including vessels of the eyes, kidney, heart and brain. Owing to this, diabetes can contribute to a variety of vascular, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular problems including stroke. In addition, for patients who have survived a stroke, the risk of having a second is three times higher in those patients whose diabetes is not controlled.
Dr. Russman says that as part of their treatment plan, people with diabetes should have their condition monitored through HbA1C tests, which provide a three-month snapshot of their blood sugar control. “We recommend that these individuals aim for an HbA1C result of 7.0 or less. Taking prescribed medication correctly, watching their diet, exercising regularly, and following their healthcare provider’s recommendations will help them achieve this.”
- Address atrial fibrillation
The WSO says atrial fibrillation is associated with one in four strokes, and Dr. Russman says these strokes tend to be more severe and disabling than strokes associated with other risk factors.
“Atrial fibrillation is a heart rhythm condition characterized by very rapid heartbeats that don’t allow the top left chamber of the heart – the left atrium – to contract normally. Instead, it fibrillates and flutters so blood is not ejected normally from the chamber,” he says. “Anytime blood is stagnant for too long, it can form a blood clot that can travel elsewhere in the body. This clot could cause a stroke by blocking a blood vessel in the brain, depriving that part of the brain of the oxygen and nutrients it needs.”
Dr. Russman says atrial fibrillation is the most common acquired heart rhythm disorder in older adults, and its associated risk is strongly related to age. “The older you are, the more at risk you are of acquiring the condition, but also the higher the risk of stroke associated with the condition,” he says. “It is estimated that up to half of all patients with a heart rhythm condition are not aware of it. However, once diagnosed, atrial fibrillation can be treated with a blood-thinning medication. These do carry some risks, but the benefits far outweigh these in the vast majority of patients.”
In addition to reducing high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or ‘bad’ cholesterol through diet, for example, by avoiding saturated fat, individuals might be prescribed statin medications that reduce future risk of heart attacks and strokes. Dr. Russman says these medications, particularly rosuvastatin and atorvastatin, may benefit patients beyond simply reducing cholesterol levels in that they also appear to reduce inflammation and stabilize plaque build-up in blood vessels.
- Stop smoking
“Any type of smoking is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke, and is strongly associated with accelerated hardening of the arteries and narrowing of blood vessels in the brain, heart and elsewhere,” says Dr. Russman. “We therefore strongly recommend everyone completely stop any form of nicotine ingestion to significantly reduce their long-term risk for a multitude of diseases.”
- Adopt a healthy lifestyle
Dr. Russman recommends following an eating plan that is low in saturated fats and sodium, and to avoid alcohol and excessive caffeine consumption. Regular physical activity is also important as it can reduce the risk of stroke directly, but also indirectly as it helps to lower high blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Exercise can also help to reduce stress, as can other activities such as meditation or deep breathing, which is important as stress causes the body to release chemicals that can increase blood pressure, affect hormones and raise blood sugar levels, says Dr. Russman.
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