News story: The Veterans’ Gateway records over 10,000 enquiries as it celebrates its first year in service

first_imgDesigned to offer a one stop shop through which veterans can access advice on a vast range of areas, from housing to health concerns, the Veterans’ Gateway has seen over 37,000 click throughs to external sites, with the majority of users requesting advice on finance.With requests coming from as far afield as Thailand, South Africa and St Maarten in the Caribbean, the service caters to veterans of all ages and backgrounds. 81% of users are under 65 years old, and 56% of web visitors access the site via mobile phones.Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: We are committed to delivering for our veterans, and the Veterans’ Gateway is making sure those who served our country are getting the support they and their families need. This £2m project has helped 10,000 ex-service men and women in its first year, making the transition between service and civilian life as smooth as possible. Every day our troops and veterans inspire our nation and it is right we deliver for them in return for the sacrifices they have made. The vast majority of veterans go on to live healthy and fulfilling lives, and most find employment within six months of leaving the military. But we need to offer support to those who find the transition more challenging. I’m proud to see the great work that goes on behind the scenes of the Veterans’ Gateway, and I’ve been inspired by the community spirit of all who dedicate their time and knowledge to supporting those in need. Minister for Defence People and Veterans Tobias Ellwood today visited the Veterans’ Gateway service centre near Cardiff in South Wales. He met with veterans who now work as call handlers, using their experiences in the Armed Forces to benefit others, and giving back to the service community.Minister for Defence People and Veterans Tobias Ellwood said:center_img The 24-hour service is delivered by a Royal British Legion-led consortium with Poppyscotland, Combat Stress, Connect Assist, the Ministry of Defence and SSAFA, the Armed Forces Charity.Charles Byrne, Director General of The Royal British Legion, on behalf of the Veterans’ Gateway consortium, said: The number of people contacting the Veterans’ Gateway continues to grow and we are reaching new groups of people including young veterans who need our support in finding the right information, advice and help. We have also seen increasing numbers of users being able to self-refer and gain better access to the services available to them. The Veterans’ Gateway can become a key resource for veterans and their families seeking support. With over 30 referral partners, it is truly a team of teams.last_img read more

Kat Wright Shares “Marvelous” Video Ahead Of Tonight’s NYC Show

first_imgKat Wright and The Indomitable Souls are playing New York City’s American Beauty on tonight, February 23rd, along with local acts Joanna Teters and LoveDeep (purchase tickets here). To get excited for the show, she shares a live video for “Marvelous” from her new album By My Side. It was recorded on September 17, 2017 at Grace Potter’s Grand Point North Festival on the Burlington, VT waterfront.We recently sat down with Kat to discuss all things musical inspirations, life in Burlington, and her Indomitable Souls. Join us tonight, but first watch this new video:last_img

Amid pandemic, Venezuelans have fun picking Carnival queen

first_imgCARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — At least one corner of Caracas is feeling a splash of Carnival excitement despite the global pandemic that struck when Venezuela was already years into crisis that put a damper on life. Neighbors in a hillside barrio called Antimano stepped into the street Friday to pick their child queen for carnival festivities. They cheered, shouted and blew whistles. The title went to 11-year-old Rosario Gutierrez. She wore a bright red dress and says she didn’t expect to wind. She’ll lead an upcoming neighborhood parade of children. Organizers say they hope the event brings a little cheer at amid tough times in Venezuela and around the world.last_img

Saint Mary’s revises policy on emotional support animals, pets

first_imgIn an email sent on Wednesday morning, the Office of Student Affairs announced new rules regarding animals on campus at Saint Mary’s, including the rule that emotional support animals will not be allowed in the workplace, common areas, classrooms or other campus buildings. The email stated that in order to address the complex issue of animals on campus, Interim President Nekvasil created a “cross-campus committee…charged with exploring the equities associated with allowing animals on campus and providing recommendations for a campus-wide policy.” The policy regarding service animals will remain unchanged and approved emotional support animals will still be allowed to live with students, as permitted under the Fair Housing Act. Dogs contracted for stress relief during finals will still be allowed on campus, said the email, and guests and visitors of the College are still welcome to walk their pets on the outdoor walking trails and in other outdoor areas or during athletic events. Saint Mary’s students can access the College’s entire policy for animals on campus in the online portal.  This new policy will go into effect on Feb. 1.last_img read more

TV Land’s Younger Renewed for Third Season

first_imgWe can’t even fathom this much statement jewelry. TV Land has renewed Younger, starring Tony winner Sutton Foster, for a third season, prior to the second season’s January 13 premiere. The announcement was made at the Television Critics Association press tour.The comedy follows 40-something Liza (Foster), a divorced mother who re-enters this working world in the publishing industry. Discouraged by the lack of opportunities for women her age, she passes herself off as a 26-year-old. As a new, honorary millennial, Liza juggles relationships with bosses (the divine Miriam Shor), boyfriends (the oft-shirtless Nico Tortorella) and friends—both young (Hilary Duff) and older (Debi Mazar).In the second season, Liza will have to keep the secret going as she moves up at work. Meanwhile, her relationship with younger boyfriend Josh transitions after learning her secret. Expect appearances from Finding Neverland’s Matthew Morrison, Spring Awakening’s Camryn Manheim and more Broadway favorites. We’re not sure what round three has in store, but we’ve a whole season to find out. View Commentslast_img read more

A new day. A blue jay.

first_imgMy small elementary school in Warrenton Virginia had a rather unusual Friday morning tradition.One student from either first or second grade would recite a poem he or she had chosen and memorized that week, for all of the lower school to hear during Friday assembly.I don’t recall the poems I chose. I recall dreading the presentations but not the actual poems.I do however, recall one that my brother Brett selected as the simple poem has been imprinted on my mind and heart for over twenty years. I was again reminded of the poem this morning when I looked outside and saw Cardinals and Blue Jays eating from our bird feeders, grey sky and wet tree limbs creating stark contrast to their bright feathers.A new day.A blue jay.A new beginning.One crow-melting snowSpring’s Winning.Admittedly, I did not recall the poet or name of the piece, but the internet says it is a poem called March by By Eleanor Farjeon. And Eleanor was right. Her observations from over 30 years ago still apply to my small city yard, my life, and Life in general.March begins next week, and frankly I am looking forward to it.My yard this winter was not totally without life. We did see birds, and signs of the occasional opossum in our compost pile. We watched our dogs chase squirrels along the fence top and bark with great gusto as neighbors walked along the alley behind the house.No, it wasn’t a long winter. It is simply that we all, animals included, are ready for a new day – melting snow – Spring.I bought seeds this week to grow green beans.Plotted where to plant tomatoes in 8 weeks.Discussed outdoor picnics and events many weeks away.I poured fresh bird seed in our cold metal feeders and watched as birds came, ate, shook and flew away.I studied the weather section of the paper for the first time in months. Considered taking my lunch outside until I realized our bench cushions were cold and wet.It is Friday morning.Hopefully, a child at Highland School is reciting a poem this morning.Hopefully, he or she has considered March as one to remember and share with others. I am grateful my brother did.last_img read more

The Sava River in Zagreb is becoming an open stage for creative industries

first_imgAt the end of the Sava Bridge tram turnoff, works on cleaning and maintenance of areas in the inundation zone of the Sava River have begun, which in itself is of course no news, but as the works unofficially mark the beginning of the Sava bank, ie the Sava project activity, the Sava returns to Zagreb. Sava, this is certainly one of the great things that will completely change Zagreb for the better.The City of Zagreb will soon lease the seven-kilometer-long Zagreb banks of the Sava on both sides of the river from Hrvatske vode, in order to revive an area neglected for more than half a century, with the aim of returning citizens to the Sava and urban revitalization of Zagreb’s banks. The project “Activities on the Sava” will set up temporary facilities at five locations, including multi-purpose pavilions, sunbathing areas and swimming pools. In addition to increasing the quality of life, Zagreb will get a new training ground and an open stage for the music, cultural, urban, tourist and all other creative industries.The newly renovated locations will offer citizens sports-recreational, cultural-entertaining and catering facilities. From hiking and biking trails, outdoor stages, cinemas, artificial topographies, lookouts, sports fields, sand-filled beaches and a number of prefabricated buildings that will be dismantled within 24 hours, if necessary, when the Sava water level rises. “At five locations on both banks of the Sava, temporary prefabricated facilities will be located, including a film screening system, multipurpose pavilions, sunbathing areas and swimming pools. When designing such an urban landscape of the city, we respect the green belt of inundation, but we also take care of the modern needs of the citizens. Interconnected public spaces are put into the function of multipurpose use of different social groups. Citizens will be able to use the arranged spaces along the Sava this summer”, Announced Sanja Jerković, head of the City Office for Strategic Planning and Development of the City.The competition for this project was announced as part of the city project “Activities on the Sava” which ended in 2015, and the work “Swamp On the River” by Carlos Zarc, Sara Palomar and Jose Luis Hidalgo from Spain and Zuhal Kola from Turkey was selected. The amount of 20 million kuna was provided from the city budget, but the City expects that a part of the money will be able to “withdraw” from EU funds. The realization of this project is planned for 2018.See more about the whole project on the official website openact architecture&lt;/p&gt;<br />
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RDC to revive Guatemala Railways

first_imgON JUNE 6 the government of Guatemala awarded a 50 year concession for the restoration, reopening and operation of the country’s 914mm gauge national rail network to Compañía Desarrolladora Ferroviaria SA, an affiliate of Pittsburgh-based Railroad Development Corp. The government will receive 5% of gross income for the first two years and 10% a year thereafter.The concession covers 813 km of track linking Guatemala City with the Atlantic at Puerto Barrios and Puerto San Tomas, the Pacific at Puerto Quetzal and Champerico and the Mexican border at Tecun Uman. There is also an abandoned branch from Zacapa to El Salvador. Ferrocarriles de Guatemala suspended freight services early in 1996, having dropped passenger trains in 1994.RDC Chairman Henry Posner III says the company is ‘under no illusions as to the difficulties facing Fegua. A substantial amount of capital will be invested before we can run the first train, and only then will we learn whether our assessment of the market was correct.’ The concessionaire will initially spend US$10m on reviving the 300 km corridor from Guatemala City to the Atlantic, where the longer distance will enable more effective competition with road. A daily train will handle maritime containers; other potential traffic incudes fuel, cement, coffee, sugar, bananas, steel and scrap. Phase 2 would revive the Pacific corridor from the Mexican border to Puerto Quetzal and Escuintla, after which the two routes would be connected by restoring the line west of Guatemala City which has been severed by serious washouts. Restoration of the link to El Salvador would follow. RDC hopes to harness the right-of-way for extra business, including pipelines, electricity transmission, and optic fibre communications links. It will also provide routes for a planned light rail network in Guatemala City.last_img read more

Dutch social partners call for ‘transition regime’ to new pensions contract

first_imgTrade unions and employer organisation have written a letter to the Dutch cabinet asking for a “transition regime” to the new pensions contract to prevent “unnecessary” pension cuts and contribution hikes.Many pension funds are responding to their rapidly worsening financial situation by hiking pension premiums or cutting pension rights, trade union FNV and employer organisations VNO-NCW and MKB Nederland stated in the letter which was published yesterday.Until they make the transition to the new defined contribution contract by 2026, Dutch pension funds will continue to be governed by the current, much stricter rules that dictate pension funds will have to be cut if funding ratios are below 100%.The gradual introduction of a new, lower ultimate forward rate (UFR) from next year will lead to further pressure on already low funding ratios.  The social partners said they fear “social unrest and negative macroeconomic consequences” if companies have to increase their contributions in the coming years to prop up pension funds’ funding ratios.In the private sector, higher pension premiums are detrimental to economic activity, investment and purchasing power, they warned.When the government and social partners concluded negotiations about the new pensions contract last summer, the government called on pension funds to keep premiums and pension rights stable.Social affairs minister Wouter Koolmees reduced the minimum required funding ratios pension funds need to have at the end of this year to prevent having to cut pensions from 100% to 90%.Without this temporary emergency measure, which was also in force in 2019, pension funds would have already had to apply drastic cuts as the funding ratios of most of the largest pension funds currently hover around this 90% level.“But it’s now also important to provide clarity for the years hereafter,” said newly appointed VNO-NCW president Ingrid Thijssen, implicitly calling for a continuation of the reprieve.The three organisations stopped short, however, from communicating any other specific demands to the government about what the “transition regime” should look like.To read the digital edition of IPE’s latest magazine click here.last_img read more

Symposium to deal with implications of 2013 Treaty of Basseterre underway

first_img 5 Views   no discussions LocalNews Symposium to deal with implications of 2013 Treaty of Basseterre underway by: – November 8, 2011 Share Share Sharecenter_img Public Relations Officer of the DMA Severin McKenzie A major symposium to deal with the implications for Dominican manufacturers following the 2013 implementation of the Treaty of Basseterre is currently underway in Dominica.The event is being organized by the Dominica Manufacturers Association (DMA) in collaboration with the Invest Dominica Authority and the Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce (DAIC).Public Relations Officer of the DMA Severin McKenzie says Dominican manufacturers are already at a disadvantage hence today’s symposium is essential to their continued survival.“It appears that we have an attitude of don’t care in Dominica and manufactures are already at a disadvantage in the way business is being done within the OECS. There are quite a number of constraints that Dominican manufactures face as it relates to shipping, air access, lack of certain facilities and if we are to enter into the liberalized open space, we will find ourselves disadvantaged if we do not prepare ourselves,” he added.Meantime Chief Executive Officer of the Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce Achille Chris Joseph says there are certain aspects of the Economic Union that is already in effect.“A citizen of the OECS can move freely with an ID card and there is no limitation as to how long he can stay in any member country of the economic union. Even more than that is the fact that the provision for a business concern in any island of the OECS to locate or purchase business and operate in another island is also in effect. So a St Lucia businessman can come to Dominica and operate with no restriction,” he explained.Dominica Vibes News Tweet Sharing is caring!last_img read more