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Creative women change trash into craft

The effort to clean up Jakarta is getting a boost as more people, mostly housewives, are
working plastic garbage into functional and ornamental products and selling them
to earn money.

Ninik Nuryanto, 51, has since 2008 organized more than 80 fellow women residents of
community unit (RW) 03 of Rawajati subdistrict in Pancoran, South Jakarta, to make
bags and card organizers out of used beverage-powder sachets, artificial flowers and
vases out of mineralwater bottles and boxes out of used pieces of paper.

Not only do we reduce plastic litter but we also create value by transforming the
garbage into craft products, she said.

Ninik said used water bottles sold for Rp 3,000 (25 US cents) per kilogram, but that she
could sell them for between Rp 35,000 and Rp 75,000 per kg if she made artificial
flowers and vases out of them.

She said that she and her group procured garbage from the RWs trash bank, which
they had established themselves for collecting organic and non-organic waste.

Residents of RW 03, according to Ninik, collected more than 2.5 tons of non-organic
waste per month, of which 50 kg was made into recycled products with the rest sold to
third parties.

We promote our products by word-of-mouth, she said, adding that they sold the
products out of the RW 03 office, which was seeing more customers thanks to reports
on TV stations and online media about her teams activities.

Ninik said that her group also sometimes promoted the products at exhibitions
organized by government agencies.

She added that her groups business had gotten support from several parties, such as
the Jakarta Sanitation Agency and private companiesthrough their corporate social
responsibility (CSR) programs.

We, for example, have received machines from the agency to facilitate our work, she
said. The agency and the companies also provide a booth for us every time they
organize exhibitions.

Niniks team is just one of more than 600 similar groups in Jakarta, according to Jakarta
Sanitation Agency head Unu Nurdin.

The women residents of Semper sub-district in North Jakarta, have been turning trash
into craft products since 2011.

Endang Susanti, 48, who lives in the housing complex for staff members of the Jakarta
Sanitation Agency, said that she and six other housewives recycled plastic waste to
make their neighborhood cleaner.

My neighborhood used to be filthy as many people littered even though most of them
work at the sanitation agency, said Endang.

She said that her group, which could collect 15 percent of the nearly two tons of non-
organic trash in the neighborhood, made sandals, bags and other craft products from
beverage powder sachets and liquid soap bottles.

The group, she said, could sell its products at prices ranging from Rp 5,000 to Rp
200,000 per piece through exhibitions organized by government agencies.

We have been cooperating with the Environment Ministry, the Public Works Ministry
and the Jakarta Sanitation Agency, so that we can display our products at their
exhibitions, she said, adding that through such exhibitions, her group had recently sold
key chains and sandals to a buyer from Malaysia.

Unu said that besides providing exhibition booths for waste-based handicraft producers,
his agency also promoted the sale of their products by encouraging companies to
become regular buyers.

He said his agency, for instance, had won an agreement with auto-maker PT Astra
International to purchase the handicrafts. (nai)







April 10, 2011, 2:00 pm 6 Comments
A Farm Grows in the Battery
By JAMES BARRON
Librado Romero/The New
York TimesCamilla Hammer, left, and Alexanna Ashley-Roth till the earth at their first planned farm in Lower
Manhattan.
Librado Romero/The New York TimesScott Dougan, one of the designers of the first
farm in Lower Manhattan, is seen at the location in the Battery.
This could give the phrase down on the farm new meaning.
The first farm in 386 years is taking shape at the Battery.
Its creators say it is the first urban farm there. Of course it is: Who had urban farms in the 17th
century?
That may be why the farms planners also describe it as the first serious planting at the Battery
since the early Dutch settlers established their gardens a short walk from the end of Manhattan
island. Island Manhattes, the Dutch called it in 1626 when they bought it from the Indians.
As farms go, this one is small only one acre in size and funny-looking. It is laid out in the
shape of a wild turkey, and dont be surprised if a real wild turkey wanders by. Her name is
Zelda, and she lives at the Battery. She arrived in 2003. No one seems to know where she came
from.
When the time came to design the farm, she was the inspiration for its two oval-shaped plots
(think head and tail) and the larger planting area in the middle (think body).
The farm is nestled on the State Street side of the park at the Battery, not to be confused with the
nearby Battery Park City. The bird shape is defined by a fence made from the bamboo poles used
in last years Big Bamb installation on the roof garden at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
The identical-twin artists Doug and Mike Starn donated them. The designer Scott Dougan, the
person who gave the farm is Zelda shape, placed them to make the most of what he called this
improbable space right here at the tip of Manhattan. So some of the poles stand tall, to shield
the farmers from the crowds passing by on the sidewalk. Others dip low, opening the way to a
view to the Statue of Liberty.
Here is something else about this farm that sets it apart from farms in, say, Iowa: It shakes when
the subway rumbles beneath. Anyone who farms here will realize that there are tunnels and
tracks below the surface. The ground was dug up when the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel was being
built in the 1940s and again when the new South Ferry subway station was under construction
several years ago.
We forget how sad and forlorn and shabby this park was, said Warrie Price, the founder and
president of the Battery Conservancy, the nonprofit group whose mission is to reinvigorate the
Battery and the Castle Clinton National Monument.
Now it has fresh soil trucked in from Long Island specifically from Yaphank, N.Y., where
Irving Berlin was stationed as a recruit in World War I. (The song Oh, How I Hate to Get Up in
the Morning came from a revue called Yip Yip Yaphank.)
And the farmers?
The idea for an urban farm there originated with the environmental club atMillennium High
School on Broad Street, a short walk from the park. The Battery Conservancy says that 650
students from 8 schools have now signed up to farm, and it is expanding the program to include
community groups, Lower Manhattan residents, even people who just work there and want to
do some digging, planting and nurturing.
The planting officially begins on Monday, when the the students will plant enough vegetables to
fill the produce section at a corner deli.
If everything goes right, the harvest will include, in no particular order, broccoli rabe,
cucumbers, eggplants, lettuce, okra, arugula, beans, beets, kale, radishes and tomatoes. Ms.
Price said some of the produce will end up being served at the food kiosk at the Battery.
She said that a master plan for the Battery from the 1980s did not call for agriculture, or even
horticulture. But the idea of a farm that could serve as an urban classroom was an appealing
addition.
Battery Park for decades was a hodgepodge park, said Adrian Benepe, the parks
commissioner. It was the point of debarkation for various forms of marine transportation, the
ferries to Ellis Island and Liberty Island. They dug it up several times to make underpasses and
the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel. It was going to be the footings of a giant bridge going over to
Brooklyn. Its a park that for years has lacked any kind of cohesive design, and whats
remarkable is how the conservancy has made it a destination.
The parks urban farmers will have to deal with one issue their Dutch predecessors did not,
because there were no tall buildings across the street in the 17th century.
We have no idea what reflected sunlight is going to do to the plantings, Ms. Price said.

http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/10/a-farm-grows-in-the-battery/?ref=urbanagriculture
















Bowing to pressure from hard-line Muslim groups, the Health Ministry has
decided to cancel National Condom Week 2013, a joint program by the AIDS
Prevention Commission (KPA) and condom maker DKT Indonesia.

We met with the campaign organizers on Monday and we have all agreed that
the campaign should be stopped, the ministrys disease control
and environmental health chief, Tjandra Yoga Aditama, told reporters on
Wednesday.

Tjandra said the ministry had only given approval for the event; it was not
handling its implementation.

National Condom Week is an annual event that was launched in 2007.

The campaign sparked controversy following a publicity stunt published for the
event.

One of the programs advertisements included posters on a city bus showing
actress and singer Julia Perez in a sexy pose along with the National Condom
Week 2013 logo.

Members of conservative groups said the posters could encourage free sex and
promiscuity among young people.

The campaign has been relatively the same since 2007; the only difference now
is that we have these ads on a bus that only travels to Cilandak Town Square,
KPA secretary Kemal Siregar said, referring to a shopping mall in South Jakarta.

He said the bus was not even used to distribute condoms.

The bus only operates in Jakarta and it was not used to distribute free condoms.
We used the bus solely for communicating our message, Kemal said, brushing
aside allegations that the bus had traveled to the outskirts of Jakarta to distribute
condoms to the public.

Conservative groups and politicians at the House of Representativesexpressed
their concerns about the campaign, part of a program to prevent the spread of
HIV/AIDS.

While the Health Ministry was hosting the press briefing, more than 50 students
from the Islamic Students Association (HMI) burned condoms outside the
ministrys office to reject the campaign.
Ministry halts condom program
Nadya Natahadibrata, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | National | Thu, December 05 2013, 7:42 AM

We reject National Condom Week because it offends Muslims. We must reject this,
said one of the protesters. We want Nafsiah Mboi to apologize for this policy, another
said in a speech, referring to the Health Minister.

Kemal said that even though the campaign had been terminated, the commission would
proceed with other programs to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.

Our focus is on preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS through sexual transmission and
the campaign only prioritizes those at risk. Thus, it will be conducted in a closed location
and will be aimed directly at sex workers and drug users, Kemal said.

He added that the commission would continue to campaign for safe sex.

We are obliged to inform the public that condoms are a health device to prevent
unwanted pregnancy and HIV/AIDS, he said.

Kemal also denied reports that condoms had been distributed to schools and colleges in
the country.

We only distributed leaflets about HIV/AIDS to students, he said.

Health Ministry data shows that from 1987 through the third quarter of this year,
108,600 people were infected with HIV, 43,667 of whom were diagnosed with AIDS, in
348 out of 497 regencies across the archipelago.

The data also recorded a breakdown of those most affected by the virus as follows:
entrepreneurs, farmers and fishermen (13,061); housewives (5,131); sex workers
(1,712), and students (1,089), while the highest at-risk group was heterosexuals, who
accounted for 60 percent of all cases.

The data showed Jakarta had the highest prevalence of HIV with 6,299 people, while
Papua had the highest prevalence of full-blown AIDS with 7,795 people.

http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2013/12/05/ministry-halts-condom-program.html

Bullying in Schools
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Collect It!
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By Ron Banks Educational Resource Information Center (U.S. Department of
Education)
Updated on Jul 15, 2013
Bullying in schools is a worldwide problem that can have negative consequences for the
general school climate and for the right of students to learn in a safe environment
without fear. Bullying can also have negative lifelong consequencesboth for students
who bully and for their victims. Although much of the formal research on bullying has
taken place in the Scandinavian countries, Great Britain, and Japan, the problems
associated with bullying have been noted and discussed wherever formal schooling
environments exist.

Bullying is comprised of direct behaviors such as teasing, taunting, threatening, hitting,
and stealing that are initiated by one or more students against a victim. In addition to
direct attacks, bullying may also be more indirect by causing a student to be socially
isolated through intentional exclusion. While boys typically engage in direct bullying
methods, girls who bully are more apt to utilize these more subtle indirect strategies,
such as spreading rumors and enforcing social isolation (Ahmad & Smith, 1994; Smith
& Sharp, 1994). Whether the bullying is direct or indirect, the key component of bullying
is that the physical or psychological intimidation occurs repeatedly over time to create
an ongoing pattern of harassment and abuse (Batsche & Knoff, 1994; Olweus, 1993).

Extent of the Problem
Various reports and studies have established that approximately 15% of students are
either bullied regularly or are initiators of bullying behavior (Olweus, 1993). Direct
bullying seems to increase through the elementary years, peak in the middle
school/junior high school years, and decline during the high school years. However,
while direct physical assault seems to decrease with age, verbal abuse appears to
remain constant. School size, racial composition, and school setting (rural, suburban, or
urban) do not seem to be distinguishing factors in predicting the occurrence of bullying.
Finally, boys engage in bullying behavior and are victims of bullies more frequently than
girls (Batsche & Knoff, 1994; Nolin, Davies, & Chandler, 1995; Olweus, 1993; Whitney &
Smith, 1993).
Chracteristics of Bullies and Victims
Students who engage in bullying behaviors seem to have a need to feel powerful and in
control. They appear to derive satisfaction from inflicting injury and suffering on others,
seem to have little empathy for their victims, and often defend their actions by saying
that their victims provoked them in some way. Studies indicate that bullies often come
from homes where physical punishment is used, where the children are taught to strike
back physically as a way to handle problems, and where parental involvement and
warmth are frequently lacking. Students who regularly display bullying behaviors are
generally defiant or oppositional toward adults, antisocial, and apt to break school rules.
In contrast to prevailing myths, bullies appear to have little anxiety and to possess
strong self-esteem. There is little evidence to support the contention that they victimize
others because they feel bad about themselves (Batsche & Knoff, 1994; Olweus, 1993).
Students who are victims of bullying are typically anxious, insecure, cautious, and suffer
from low self-esteem, rarely defending themselves or retaliating when confronted by
students who bully them. They may lack social skills and friends, and they are often
socially isolated. Victims tend to be close to their parents and may have parents who
can be described as overprotective. The major defining physical characteristic of victims
is that they tend to be physically weaker than their peers--other physical characteristics
such as weight, dress, or wearing eyeglasses do not appear to be significant factors
that can be correlated with victimization (Batsche & Knoff, 1994; Olweus, 1993).

Consequences of Bullying
As established by studies in Scandinavian countries, a strong correlation appears to
exist between bullying other students during the school years and experiencing legal or
criminal troubles as adults. In one study, 60% of those characterized as bullies in
grades 6-9 had at least one criminal conviction by age 24 (Olweus, 1993). Chronic
bullies seem to maintain their behaviors into adulthood, negatively influencing their
ability to develop and maintain positive relationships (Oliver, Hoover, & Hazler, 1994).
Victims often fear school and consider school to be an unsafe and unhappy place. As
many as 7% of America's eighth-graders stay home at least once a month because of
bullies. The act of being bullied tends to increase some students' isolation because their
peers do not want to lose status by associating with them or because they do not want
to increase the risks of being bullied themselves. Being bullied leads to depression and
low self-esteem, problems that can carry into adulthood (Olweus, 1993; Batsche &
Knoff, 1994)
Around the World, Women Better at English Than Men
Author: Curtis Silver
Published: October 24, 2012 at 6:28 am

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According to Education First's recent English Proficiency Index, which is the world's
most in-depth ranking of English ability, women are better at English than men. This is
one of many data points revealed in the index which is based on survey data received
from 1.7 million adults in 54 countries.

The index, released today, also shows that the Swedish are the best English speakers
(outside of English speaking countries) while Italy and Spain are circling the drain when
it comes to English speaking skills. Considering the Euro Zone crisis, Education First is
suggesting that there may be a connection between the quality of English and exports.
This can be found on page 12 of the report, available here. As the infographic below
(and linked) shows, there are wide disparities between many developing countries.

English is key to innovation and competitiveness, says Michael Lu, Senior Vice
President of EF Education First. The EF EPI ranking should be a wake-up call to
countries falling behind their neighborsbecause todays report shows that poor
English is linked with less trade, less innovation and lower income.

The EF EPI also looks at English scores by region, age and gender for 11 select
countries. As for the gap between men and women, this is widest in the Middle East and
North Africa, where female scores were much higher. This statistic shows that speaking
English could lead to greater opportunities for women in developing nations. Italy and
China also show that women are much stronger in the English language than men.

http://technorati.com/lifestyle/article/around-the-world-women-better-at/







Hormone May Improve Behavior in Autistic Children

Jessica Berman
December 03, 2013



Scientists say a hormone called oxytocin appears to improve brain functioning in
children with autism, a neurodevelopmental disorder that can be marked by limited
social interaction, repetitive behaviors and, occasionally, violent outbursts.

The study investigating the effect of oxytocin in autistic children stemmed from
observations of the tiny prairie vole, a mouse-sized rodent that lives in the grasslands of
the United States and Canada. Oxytocin promotes bonding between mothers and their
offspring, experts say. Higher levels of the hormone were found in voles that lived in
pairs, while solitary voles had lower levels.

Researchers at Yale University in Connecticut wondered about the role of oxytocin in
autistic children, who are often solitary and have trouble bonding with others. In the first
study looking at the impact of the hormone on brain function, researchers studied 17
medium- to high-functioning autistic youngsters between the ages of eight and 16 and a
half.

The scientists administered a single dose of oxytocin via nasal spray to half of the
children. The other half were given a placebo. Investigators then did computerized
imaging of their brains. In the treated children, areas of the brain that had previously
been silent in association with reward and emotion lit up. In other words, they
responded to social stimuli, such as another person's face.

Kevin Pelphrey, head of the Center for Translational Developmental Neuroscience at
Yale, led the study. He hopes longer treatment with oxytocin leads to changes in
behavior.

We would expect the kids to be more socially engaged, make more eye contact,
understand sort of subtle social advances more clearly and be more interested in
interacting with other people," said Pelphrey.

But practical use of these results may be some time away. Gina Ballone is with the
organization Achieve Beyond, which offers clinical services and interpersonal therapies
to autistic children and their parents.

And I think that, not to blame the parents, the parents want a quick fix. And
unfortunately theres no quick fix with autism," said Ballone.

Pelphrey and his colleagues are planning larger studies to learn whether oxytocin given
for a longer time helps autistic children.

An article on the potential benefits of the hormone oxytocin in autistic children is
published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

http://www.voanews.com/content/hormone-may-improve-behavior-in-autistic-children/1803005.html