Let’s Talk About this “Rona” The Coronavirus! – I know, I know…

Safety Precautions & What is “Pandemic” vs an “Epidemiccrisis

I know, before you give me a deep embedded *sigh* – by now you’ve probably heard about the coronavirus more times than anyone else would care too and I get it, I’m a little worn out of the word myself. However, now that this “Rona” as I call it, is no joke and truly something you should be preparing for. I thought I’d talk about the difference between what a pandemic and epidemic crisis is, along with giving you a couple of tips on how you can keep yourself as well as your home healthy.

So, first things first. What’s the difference between a pandemic and epidemic crisis. When first talks of the coronavirus began, I heard that it was just an epidemic crisis and monitoring was going on, however over the last weeks, it has now become a pandemic, which takes this “Rona” case from a 10 to a clear 100 overnight!

  • An Epidemic Crisis is: When a disease or illness is isolated to one region or country.
  • A Pandemic Crisis is: A widespread infectious disease, bacteria, or virus that sickens a large number of people worldwide.

Also, some other terms you need to know?

  • Asymptomatic – means someone is showing no symptoms.
  • Symptoms – showing known signs or a virus and/or illness.

Now that we have that out of the way and you know the difference because truth be told, I didn’t until more info about the “Rona” spread across the news waves and the trillion updates we’ve gotten for what seems like every min/hour after. However, it’s here and I have this strong feeling that it’s going to get worse before we see a light and rainbows at the end of the tunnel.

~ BUT DON’T FRET! ~

I know this too shall pass just like Y2K, Anthrax and everything else that came to shift the nation prior. Although this case seems like it will be remembered for years to come. In the wake of the “Rona” epidemic, there are things that you can do to stay well, be safe and keep you sanity on the up and up no matter the mad dash people are making to the stores in a frenzy!

Stay Well

With everything going on and as reports suggest, it’s best to drink plenty of water, take your multi’s and /or anything that will boost your immune system. I’m a HUGE fan of tea but not just any type of tea. I love the teas that have added health benefits to them such as this new one that I’m trying right now (see below) and it’s really good too. I got mine from Amazon but you can find it at your local Wal-Mart (I doubt if it’ll be gone off the shelves). I take my multi-vitamins as well as drink my Emergen-C! which is chock full of vitamin C. And not only wash your hands but give it a vigorous scrub, that way germs are actually getting washed off (more on sanitization next). You should increase fruit and veggie intake and get in a little exercise if you can – I plan to take out my walking tapes. You can walk around your house or in your neighborhood with discretion!

Be Safe

The crazy thing about this “Rona” is that you just don’t know who’s a carrier and that could be anyone!! since the average person will not start showing symptoms for quite a few days. Most cities and states have already begun shutting businesses down or limiting the interaction of events in which involve people. We now reference this new terminology as “social-distancing” – If you just happen to go out, cover your mouth and neck with a scarf and be careful of the places you go and how many people are intended to be there. Carry sanitizer with you and take advantage of the sanitizer wipes in stores to wipe down your grocery and/or carry baskets. I would sanitize my hands afterward as well.

I know my friend Deborah started carrying Clorox wipes in a zip lock bag in her purse when she took them out to wipe down the table we were going to eat at for girls’ night out with us and another friend and took out her big bottle of sanitizer. I believe I realized at that point just how REAL things were, the waitress even asked her could she use some…lol. You have to protect yourself and others as well. Especially yourself, even if others don’t.

Sanity vs. Panicky

This health crisis has everyone up in arms, of course, you can tell by the empty shelves in the grocery stores and the rush to get EVERYTHING in sight’s eye whether you really need it or not. My friend told me over the weekend that she saw a guy come out of the store with five deep freezers, yes FIVE! and here it is I was debating on if I should get just one. I understand the concern and the frenzy because at this point, nobody knows the outcome or what’s really going to happen and I get it, however, remember in the bible when Jesus slept in the midst of that raging storm? (Matthew 8:23-27) He wasn’t fazed by it, neither was he fretful but the disciples were afraid and probably thought that the boat would capsize and they’d be lost at sea or something worse. When they awoke Jesus, crying for him to get up and do something about the endured crisis (epidemic), he spoke “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?”

With one word, he calmed the sea and everything was fine. What am I trying to say? This Pandemic scare is no different than that incident back in Jesus’s time. This is the time to ask yourself, am I going to panic? or stand still and trust that God has this ALL under control. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying NOT to prepare because afterall, I do believe God wants us to use wisdom even in this crisis but what I’m saying is that we shouldn’t allow this crisis to make us question our faith in the man who can say one word and calm all this chaos. But the faith is not so much in what God can do but in how you react to what’s in front of you. Are you going to fear, fail or fall under the mounting pressure?

Find something that will keep your mind occupied in this time, whether it be a song, a book, a quote or a reading of scripture such as the one provided above. Meditation is also a good source.

As I told my subscribers last week, If we survived Y2KH1N1AnthraxEbola and etc – we can surely fight our way through this one!

Much Love & Prayers to you and yours, Be Safe, Use Wisdom & Don’t forget to Sanitize! 

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Did you notice that I didn’t blog last week?, Well, I actually did. Did you miss it, did you miss me? Well, why not become a subscriber because there will be times that I’ll be sharing things there and not on here! Subscribe today to not MISS anything – whether I’m here or elsewhere!

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Also, with the cancellations and closures – most of us will be “stuck inside the house” is there anything you’d like me to talk about and/or discuss on the blog? leave a comment and let me know!

It’s A Super Bowl “FOOD” Fest!!

Featured Photo: Cocina Delirante

Are you ready for the Superbowl?

Super Bowl LIV will be this upcoming Sunday, February 2nd, 2020 at 6:30pm ET/3:30 PT it’s the San Francisco 49ers vs. the Kansas City Chiefs! Now I know I’m talking right now as if I’m a HUGE Football fan but in reality, I’M REALLY NOT! – HAHAHAHA!! I mean…

Iyanla Vanzant – Fix My Life

YASSSS, I mean. I just learned what a 1st down was like two years ago…. I know, I know. So, I’m really not the fanatic fan, however, I have watched the game and have learned to cheer along when I saw everyone else cheering, you know I just didn’t want to feel out of place. I will watch it, just know that I will be asking quite a few questions if we watch it together – I warned ya!

So, what could be better than the Superbowl? THE FOOD!!!

I usually go to football gatherings/parties for this reason and this reason alone. The food is amazing and guess what, it’s lots of it. So, while everyone is cheering for the touchdown. I’m touching down in the kitchen to get another plate of wings!

Do you have Superbowl parties at your house or do you like going to them?

If Superbowl LIV is going to be at your house this year and you’re still trying to figure out what to cook up, I have a couple of old and new football party favorites recipes that will get your crowd cheering for the team as well as for the FOOD!

Recipe #1 – Barbequed Lil Smokies

These are very easy to make and one of my favorites, they’re good, small and don’t take up a lot of room in my plate while I’m feeling it up with other goodies!

Recipe #2 – Slider Burgers

Who doesn’t love a GOOD burger? I know I do and when they’re small enough to fit in your mouth, that’s even better for a Superbowl party. I mean you want finger foods and these little minis are not only the perfect addition but the perfect size. I substitute for turkey, but you can fix them however you like.

Recipe #3 – Wings and More Wings Please!

I’m a HUGE wing lover. I absolutely love chicken wings, wingettes, turkey wings – okay, just about anything with a wing, lol! You CAN’T have a Superbowl party with out wings, like it’s just not common and I’m going to have to take your chicken wing card if you do, lol. Wings are the staple for any party, I especially LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the flats. Do you love chicken wings?

Recipe #4 – Loaded Baked Potato Dip…Yum!\

This is a new recipe that I haven’t tried but I’m sure will win your crowd over. I love a good loaded baked potato myself (I mean, I’m just a foodie anyway…sigh) any who, this will be a great addition to any party.

Recipe #5 – Where’s the Chocolate Footballs!

No party is good with a little something to satisfy the sweet tooth and these chocolate football cookie balls looked so delicious. If you wanted to get super creative, you could decorate the outside to display both teams that are playing. Your crowd will be amazed at your talent but most of all happy that you’re not making them choose a side, in which you can just make them generic, that’s your choice as well.

No matter how you choose to celebrate the Superbowl, whether it’s by way of a party or a party of one OR two, it’s all about enjoying the moment and seizing the present with special friends and family. And on that note…

I want to give my heartfelt, sincerest condolences to the family of Kobe & Gianna Bryant, John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, Alyssa Altobelli, Christina Mauser, Ara Zobayan & Sarah Chester. I know a lot of the news has been mainly on 5-time NBA Championship/MVP Kobe Bryant, 41 and I get it, he was the best (outside of Michael Jordan) basketball player of all time. His work ethic, mamba mentality and love of basketball garnered him much success and it looks as if his 13-yr. old daughter, Gianna Bryant was going to carry on that MAMBA legacy in the future for the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) before their sudden and unfortunate demise this past Sunday, January 26th.

Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant

However, there are 7 other families that are hurting as well and from what I’ve been reading, they received the news like everyone else of their family’s demise by the news outlet and not a police official. To hear about your love, one dying through a news outlet, is beyond devastating. I can’t imagine what any of these families must be going through at this time, although I’ve lost a mother, so I know about loss and the dredging feeling of hopelessness it brings. Husbands lost wives, Wives lost husbands, Children lost siblings and friends lost best friends. It’s a tragedy that no one saw coming or even imagined in their wildest dreams.

Tonight, say their and their family’s names in your prayers – it’s going to be a LONG road ahead and they’re going to need every well wish possible to keep forging forward as they all take one step at a time towards healing. Allow this unfortunate tragedy of theirs help you make peace and get closer to the special ones in your life. No more grudges, No more hard feelings. Show peace and love, even if it’s not shown back to you. We only get one life and what we do with it is our responsibility.

May those 9 hearts, Rest in Heaven & In Peace.


A School ‘Without’ Teachers – A Nigerian Education Innovation

  • Have you seen a school that uses no textbooks, no exercise books and no timetables?or… 
  • Have you ever visited a school without a row of chairs, tables for students and teachers?… and 
  • Have you been to a school where there are no grade levels, and nobody is actually a student?

If you haven’t, then welcome to Prikkle Academy!

All that you see in a regular school, we have the opposite at this Academy.

In Nigeria, there is a worrisome statistics of millions of youths that have to spend at least 16 years through school to become fully unemployed.

The numbers are even scarier in rural communities where the quality of formal education is low, where the infrastructures are weak and the motivation of learners and teachers dwindle down to zero every day.

This news is everywhere, everyone is angry about the educational system and the hope for a highly productive future of the nation is like the legs of a snail walking backwards.

Instead of waiting until everything crumbles, Prikkle Academy decided to chart a different path – a daringly odd direction to not fix education but to nurture the gifts and assets that are available in any community.

We have a vision of an Africa where rural youths are community builders, valued by everybody and can play a critical role in national development.

So, we co-create innovation hubs (called makerspaces) with grassroots youths to inspire creative collaboration in identifying the social problems within their community, freely choose their own tools and become problem-solvers through virtual and peer-to-peer learning.

Student at Prikkle Academy

In a practical sense, we run from a specific community location, inside a solar-powered building, opened for 7 days in a week, where anyone of any age, background or skill can freely walk into and find the tools and resources they need to turn their ideas into real solutions.

No timetables, no teacher or student, no classwork or homework, no report cards, no payment of any fees, and nobody is paid a salary.

We call it real learning as real life is happening.

There is a little story that is worth sharing about how we decided to go in this direction and then, we will hold your hand as we walk you through some of the magical possibilities that have happened since we started in 2016.

Are you ready? Let’s go:

In 2012, a young man after immediately graduating from the University was enrolled by the Nigerian Government as a biology teacher on the compulsory 1 year National Service.

The usual practice is that some graduates influence their placement to be posted to the cities, but this guy didn’t bother influencing his posting.

Fortunately, he was posted into a hard-to-reach rural community in Benue State, North-Central Region in Nigeria (Most-populous African Nation).

He had to live in a house without electricity, drinkable water or toilet for 7 months of his stay in the community. When he resumed at the school, he found students that were academically brilliant and many others that struggled to learn.

While his job was to help students learn Biology, something shocking started happening to the students that he couldn’t ignore.

He realized that some of his students dropped out of school without any prior notice. He inquired about the situation and found out that there were two problems that led to this problem:

#1 Poverty! – the parents could no longer afford the cost of sending their children to school.
#2 The quality of education was too low to raise skilled youths.

Survival is generally tough in rural communities and the youths continuously moved to the city to become street children and manual laborers to survive.

At this point, he got inspired to help rural children and youths to get tailored, personalized and quality education that will ensure they learn effectively, have top-notch competencies to get jobs, be engaged and lead peaceful lives in the future, no matter where they go to.

He engaged about 200 students for 3 days in a series of capacity building sessions. The creative spirit, curiosity and the passion in the students were unleashed. Within a month, new enterprises were created and still growing till date.

The children and youths seemed powerless living in rural communities because they didn’t have the necessary technologies to learn, research, grow and blossom like the children in the city or in developed countries.

After his 1 year service year ended, he took a job that he didn’t need in the city. Yet, deep down, he was already consumed with the passion to empower humanity, because of his experiences visiting and working with more rural communities within that year.

His name is Damilola Fasoranti, straightaway he decided to start Prikkle Academy, left his city job and permanently moved into the rural communities to do 2 major things:

  • to make sure that any child and youth in the rural communities can be fully engaged with the tools, people and resources that will help them turn any education they have into solutions.
  • to help more youths to access learning opportunities, to collaborate on projects with other youths from around the world, to communicate effectively, become ethical leaders and lead successful lives.

In the past 3 years, here are some of the results of this ‘odd’ approach to Education:

  • Increased community recycling: plastic bottles, nylons and cartons were usually thrown away by the community people are now being sold in bundles starting from $2, as they now see the tangible recycled products that children and youths are creating from it.
  • Employment opportunities: At least 15 unemployed participants now earn $60+ monthly (above minimum wage) by offering their new skill sets virtually in design, content creation, social media management and research.
  • This makerspace, launched in 2017 has helped to engender peaceful co-existence with neighbors, different tribes, religions and language serving 7 schools (over 900 students) in the local communities of Mbagishi, Benue State and Afon, Kwara State, Nigeria.
  • For the first time, rural youths are able to use computers and learn with other people from around the world virtually.
  • The centre has attracted the visits of urban professionals, University students from several states in Nigeria and Overseas.
  • Our solution of turning household food waste into organic fertilizers for farmers has been adopted by people in 3 African countries.
  • We have successfully converted human feces into organic cooking fuel.
  • Successfully partnered with the Government in Nigeria and 4 other organizations in Nigeria (MollyFrank Nigeria Limited and MindTheGap – A Google Sponsored Initiative), in Benin Republic (VIP World) and a Non-profit Organization (Loss of Generality) Ireland.
  • In 2017, Prikkle Academy was profiled as one of the 450 education organizations in the world solving education problems with an innovative approach by Centre for Education Innovations (an Initiative of Results for Development Institute), USA.
  • – We were selected as 1 of the Top 100 Global Most inspiring Social Innovations by Social Enabler, India.
  • Our Staff and Participants have been selected for at least 6 International fellowship programs for using an unconventional method to solve rural educational problems in Nigeria.
  • Prikkle Academy’s inspiring approach to development has been published in the renowned CHANGE Magazine, by Development Innovation Insider (Diinsider), Hong Kong.

If there a dream that you have always had, the time to launch it was yesterday, not tomorrow. No matter how odd or scary it may seem.

See this documentary, click >>>> HERE

You have been inspired enough… now, LAUNCH!

To learn more and support our work at Prikkle Academy, visit our website: www.prikkleacademy.org | On Social Media: @PrikkleAcademy [ctt template=”8″ link=”aIJ70″ via=”no” ]Prikkle Academy – Changing Lives, Empowering Communities [/ctt]

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Damilola Fasoranti writes in his dreams and helps fearful entrepreneurs to finally launch their awesome dreams. He is a Tedx Speaker, a professional educator and the Chief Listener at Prikkle Academy (in Nigeria) where he provokes young people to turn their skills, gifts and knowledge into social solutions.

Sunday’s Thought: Prayers, Conversations & Criticisms

the photo above courtesy of CBN

So, I’ll just hop right into this one – in case you hadn’t heard or maybe you’ve banned yourself from the news and social media altogether (in which I don’t blame you). Some of America’s most prominent Inner-City African-American pastors all met with President Donald Trump a.k.a #45 to some; on August 1, 2018, to discuss Criminal Justice Reform and how the church can play a role in helping non-violent offenders get back into the workforce.

Continue reading “Sunday’s Thought: Prayers, Conversations & Criticisms”

EnSpired: Pet Hair, Don’t Care. Meet the Grooming Dogs Who Were Born To Be WILD!

photo above courtesy of katrinapetsalon

Whether you want it dyed, fried, laid to the side or a rainbow of colors – there’s one salon in California that’s specialized to give your…..PET!…..anything it’s heart or I guess I should say, it’s owner’s heart desire. Thanks to ‘Katrina’s Pet Salon’; now your pet can be just as fashion forward as you are!

dog-grooming-trends

Katrina Short is the owner and certified groomer of ‘Katrina’s Pet Salon’ in San Leandro, CA. a salon that specializes in dog, cat and creative grooming and when I say creative, I mean it’s on the next level of creativity! Katrina, whose has been a lover of animals her whole life, had dreams of becoming a vet when she grew up, but when she got bit by the  “grooming” field bug; she immediately fell in love with it and decided to combine her love of pets and her new love of grooming together and VIOLA! soon, she began taking pets from ordinary to an extraordinary WILD SIDE, literally.

As you’ll see in the video below – Katrina, gives the pets fresh looks by dying their hair, trimming their tresses and even painting their nails, giving them not only a new look but a new found confidence as well. This new found confidence helped give Khalee a boost, whom according to her owner – suffered from depression (I know that may seem a bit unreal for a dog to be depressed, but I guess it happens for animals too) 

Katrina’s not only a master mind when it comes to grooming, but she’s also into the pet’s overall health as well. Due to her thorough grooming services, she’s saved over five pets lives by discovering cancerous lumps early.

Katrina Short

 

“As a groomer, I’m in tune with each individual pet and their bodies” Katrina Short

 

So, without further ado – get ready to meet the “glam squad” Zeus, Kevin, Khalee and their “rat pack” Brody, Tank, Sterling and Bling in the video below.

To see who’ll be getting a fabulous makeover next or view more videos of her shop and grooming process. Feel free to follow Katrina on one of her social sites below:

Instagram: @Katrina_Short

YouTube: katrina_short pet grooming 

You can see more of Katrina’s Creations on her website: Katrina’s Pet Salon

 

What do you think? Do you like the way Katrina is glamming up pets? Would you get your pet glammed up this way? – Leave your comments below….

 

ROSHONDA N. BLACKMON

Creator of A Blog, A Magazine. It’s JustsumInspiration, Author, Speaker & Encourager