Kolkata: The West Bengal government has changed the Commissioner of Bidhannagar City Police four times in four days, raising questions about clarity in the top level of the administration. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also handles the Home (Police) portfolio. Laxmi Narayan Meena, who was the Commissioner of Asansol-Durgapur City, is the current Bidhannagar Commissioner of Police, a government order said on Wednesday. Earlier, Bidhannagar CP Gyanwant Singh, who was replaced by N. Ramesh Babu during the general elections, was given back his charge on Sunday. Also Read – City bids adieu to Goddess Durga Next day, an official statement directed Nishat Parvez, who was the Deputy Inspector General(DIG) Operations of the Criminal Investigation Department, to replace Singh as the Bidhannagar CP. On Tuesday, there was again a fresh order which cancelled Pervez’s appointment and directed him to continue in his old post. The Commissioner of Siliguri City Police, Bharat Lal Meena was given the charge for a day, to be replaced by Laxmi Narayan Meena through a new notification on Wednesday. Bharat Lal Meena was reinstated as the CP of Siliguri City Police.
Mumbai: Adani Ports & SEZ is tapping the internaitonal debt market to raise up to $1 billion to fund its capex plans and also to retire some of its debt, according to merchant banking sources. The proposed issue has a ‘Baa3′ rating from the global ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service. “Adani Ports is doing a $issue soon and will be raising $750 million to $1 billion,” merchant banking sources said but refused to share more details like the tenure of the debt or the likely pricing. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in SepThe Gautam Adani-run company and is the flagship entity of the Adani group, will use the proceeds for capital expenditure, refinancing a part of the existing debt and other permissible uses under the external commercial borrowings guidelines, the source said. The rating reflects the company’s market position as the country’s largest port developer and operator by volume, and the strength of its Mundra Port concession, Moody’s said in the rating note. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to CustomsThe Baa3 rating is also predicated on the company continuing to execute its various projects within time and cost budgets, while adhering to regulatory approval processes to minimize the risk of future difficulties. The agency also given a stable outlook on the rating. “The bonds will represent a senior unsecured obligation and will rank equally with all of Adani Ports’ existing and future unsecured and unsubordinated indebtedness,” the agency said. The agency said given the ranking of the bonds is pari pasu to all of the company’s existing and future unsecured and unsubordinated debt, while the rating of these bonds follow that of its existing senior unsecured bonds issued in 2015 and 2017, respectively. Adani Ports reported a 13 percent growth in container traffic in FY19 and this traffic contributed 41 percent of the total cargo handled by it during the fiscal year.
New Delhi: Richest Indian Mukesh Ambani has kept his annual salary from his flagship firm Reliance Industries capped at Rs 15 crore for the eleventh year on the trot. Ambani has kept salary, perquisites, allowances and commission together at Rs 15 crore since 2008-09, forgoing over Rs 24 crore per annum. This is at a time when remunerations of all whole-time directors of the company, including cousins Nikhil and Hital Meswani, saw a handsome increase in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2019. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal “Compensation of Shri Mukesh D Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director, has been set at Rs 15 crore, reflecting his desire to continue to set a personal example for moderation in managerial compensation levels,” RIL said in its latest annual report. His remuneration for 2018-19 included Rs 4.45 crore as salary and allowances, which is marginally lower than Rs 4.49 crore he got in the previous 2017-18 fiscal. Commission has been unchanged at Rs 9.53 crore while perquisites have risen to Rs 31 lakh from Rs 27 lakh. Retirement benefits were Rs 71 lakh. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost Ambani voluntarily capped his compensation at Rs 15 crore in October 2009 amid a debate over right-sizing of CEO salaries. The salary cap continued even as all other executive directors saw their remunerations go up. Ambani’s cousins Nikhil R Meswani and Hital R Meswani saw their compensation rise to Rs 20.57 crore each. They earned Rs 19.99 crore each in 2017-18 and Rs 16.58 crore in 2016-17. In 2015-16, Nikhil had got Rs 14.42 crore while Hital took home Rs 14.41 crore. In 2014-15, they had got Rs 12.03 crore each. Also, one of his key executives, Executive Director P M S Prasad saw his remuneration go up to Rs 10.01 crore from Rs 8.99 crore in the previous year. He too has seen his remuneration rise steadily — from Rs 6.03 crore in 2014-15, to Rs 7.23 crore in the next fiscal and Rs 7.87 crore in 2016-17. Refinery chief Pawan Kumar Kapil saw his compensation rise to Rs 4.17 crore from Rs 3.47 crore in 2017-18. In the previous fiscal, his remuneration had fallen to Rs 2.54 crore, from Rs 2.94 crore in 2015-16. He had earned Rs 2.41 crore in 2014-15. The two however did not get any commission in 2018-19. “Performance criteria for two Executive Directors, entitled for Performance Linked Incentive (PLI), are determined by the Human Resources, Nomination and Remuneration Committee,” RIL said in the annual report. RIL’s non-executive directors, including Nita Ambani, also got Rs 1.65 crore each as commission, besides sitting fees. The commission was Rs 1.5 crore in 2017-18 and Rs 1.3 crore in the previous year. Former State Bank of India (SBI) chairman Arundhati Bhattacharya got only Rs 75 lakh as commission as she was appointed to the board of RIL only with effect from October 17, 2018. Ambani’s wife Nita Ambani, a non-executive director on the company’s board, earned Rs 7 lakh as sitting fee, up from Rs 6 lakh in the previous year. Apart from Ambani, the RIL board has Meswani brothers, Prasad and Kapil as wholetime directors. Besides Nita Ambani, other non-executive directors include Mansingh L Bhakta, Yogendra P Trivedi, Dipak C Jain, Raghunath A Mashelkar, Adil Zainulbhai, Raminder Singh Gujral, Shumeet Banerji and Aruundhati Bhattacharya.
Kolkata: State of Science and Technology and Biotechnology department signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) with Maulana Abul Kalam Azad University of Technology (MAKAUT) in order to introduce two new courses which will help to develop skills for the entrepreneurs who want to come up with new start ups.On Wednesday afternoon, at Vigyan Chetana Bhavan, in Salt Lake, principal secretary to the Science and Technology and Biotechnology department Sayeed Ahmed Baba and Registrar of MAKAUT Partha Pratim Lahiri signed two MoU in presence of minister Bratya Basu. According to the MoU, the two courses are M.Tech on Geoinformetics and Post Graduate (PG) Diploma in Intellectual Property Rights and Technology Business Management. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaAccording to the scientists, the course on Geoinformetics will help the students to get more jobs Also the PG diploma course on Intellectual Property Rights and Technology Business Management will help the entrepreneurs to handle the critical issues of technology business management using the intellectual property rights as a tool for an organization or start ups which they are running. “The diploma course will help the entrepreneurs to become self dependent using the intellectual property rights. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wants the talent of Bengal to stay here and our aim is to create opportunities,” said Basu.
Mumbai: Domestic equity benchmark BSE Sensex rallied over 300 points in early trade on Thursday tracking gains in HDFC twins and Infosys ahead of July derivatives expiry, amid positive global cues. The 30-share index was trading 309.16 points or 0.82 per cent higher at 38,156.81 at 0945 hours; and the broader Nifty also surged 81.15 points or 0.72 per cent to 11,352.45.In the previous session, the 30-share index tumbled 135.09 points or 0.36 per cent to close at an over two-month low of 37,847.65. Similarly, the Nifty dropped 59.75 points or 0.53 per cent to 11,271.30. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalIn early trade, IndusInd Bank, HDFC Bank, Sun Pharma, Vedanta, HDFC, Axis Bank, Infosys and Maruti led the gains on Sensex, rising up to 2.35 per cent.On the other hand, Tata Motors, Kotak Bank, Yes Bank, Asian Paints, ONGC and M&M fell up to 2.28 per cent.According to traders, besides tracking firm global cues, benchmark indices rallied on gains in index heavyweight HDFC and HDFC Bank stocks. Investors are also upbeat ahead of the expiry of July futures and derivatives contracts, they said. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostOn a net basis, foreign institutional investors sold equities worth Rs 1,393.71 crore, while domestic institutional investors purchased shares to the tune of Rs 2,140.26 crore, provisional data available with stock exchanges showed on Wednesday.Elsewhere in Asia, Shanghai Composite Index, Hang Seng, Nikkei and Kospi were trading in the green in their respective early sessions.Equities on Wall Street too ended on a positive note on Wednesday.Meanwhile, the Indian rupee appreciated marginally to 68.96 against the US dollar (intra-day).The global oil benchmark Brent crude futures were trading 0.17 per cent higher at 63.29 per barrel.
New Delhi: Inter-ministerial central teams with representatives from key ministries like home, finance, agriculture and power will be visiting 11 flood-affected states to have first hand on-the-spot assessment of damages caused and relief work carried out so far. According to a statement by the Home Ministry, an inter-ministerial central team, led by Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs Prakash, is visiting Karnataka on Saturday to have first-hand on-the-spot assessment of damages caused and relief work carried out by the state administration. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’ In pursuance of a significant decision taken by Union Home Minister Amit Shah in a meeting of the high-level committee on August 19, inter-ministerial central teams will visit Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Kerala affected by the recent floods, the statement said. Till now, such teams used to visit the affected states only once after the receipt of memorandum from the state in the wake of any severe calamity. The same team will again visit the state after submission of the memorandum for detailed assessment of the damages and relief operations conducted for making final recommendations for allocation of additional funds. Officers from the ministries of home, agriculture, finance, road transport, rural development and jal shakti will be part of the team.
New Delhi: As macroeconomic headwinds weighed on investor sentiments through the year, foreign portfolio investors pulled out Rs 38,930 crore in 2018-19, according to market regulator Sebi’s annual report. “In order to further develop the Indian securities market as an avenue for fundraising, eligibility norms for FPIs (Foreign Portfolio Investors) were relaxed and data privacy concerns of FPIs were addressed,” the 2018-19 annual report said. Among other steps, the watchdog had withdrawn the minimum residual maturity restriction of three years for investment in government securities and state development loans. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalBesides, sub-categories under the category of corporate bonds were discontinued resulting in a single limit for FPI investment in all types of corporate bonds, as per the report. The limit for FPI investment in debt was revised from Rs 6.49 lakh crore to over Rs 6.98 lakh crore for the April 2019-September 2019 and more than Rs 7.46 lakh crore for October 2019-March 2020, it noted. To address concerns over data privacy, a provision similar to One Time Password (OTP) was introduced, wherein, an intermediary can access information related to beneficial owner, including senior managing official of an FPI only after confirmation from the FPI or its global custodian. Additionally, measures like relaxation of eligibility norms for FPIs, monitoring of foreign investment limits, easing the process of on-boarding of FPIs were taken.
The site of a deadly van attack was transformed into a place of mourning Sunday evening, as the streets of north Toronto echoed with thousands of people singing O Canada at a vigil for the victims.Religious leaders of multiple faiths led the speakers’ list at the event, all of them sharing messages of support and strength in the face of the tragedy that left 10 people dead and 16 more injured.Many speakers commended emergency service personnel on their work the day of the incident, including the officer who was able to arrest the suspect without firing his gun.“In Toronto, in Ontario, in Canada, we don’t run away – we run to help others,” said Rabbi Baruch Frydman-Kohl of the Beth Tzedec Congregation, the largest synagogue community in Canada.Frydman-Kohl also referenced other van attacks in cities such as Paris, Beirut and Charlottesville, Virginia.“Toronto has felt the pain of other places, and those cities now share our horror and hurt,” he said.Open Gallery12 itemsBefore the vigil, thousands took part in what was billed as a walk of “healing and solidarity,” roughly following the route of last Monday’s attack.“It’s amazing how on this one stretch of street, so many people are connected and affected by it,” said Jennifer Ludlow, who is from the area and attended the walk and vigil.“To come together as a large group really does bring us all together, and shows us there is hope on the other side.”Multiple politicians also took part in Sunday’s ceremony, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Premier Kathleen Wynne, Mayor John Tory and federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh.Singh said it was particularly touching to see how multicultural the event was, wish speakers including rabbis, an imam and a Buddhist monk.“I don’t think I’ve ever been to an event that’s been so well represented by such a wide diversity of faiths – and secular thoughts as well,” said Singh.“The fact that despite this act of hate, people came together in really incredible numbers in an act of love is really incredible.”One volunteer said around 200 people worked throughout the day to prepare for tens of thousands of mourners to show up.Kevin Joachin said volunteering was an opportunity to give back to the community after it suffered through a tragedy.“It’s been a great help so far – just by the numbers, the support, the encouragement,” said Joachin.“Today’s event is a great demonstration – not just to the community here, but to Toronto – that we are strong, and we will move forward together.”Adrienne Lyog said many of her friends were traumatized after witnessing the attack, and Sunday’s event would play a large part in helping them move forward.“It’s devastating,” said Lyog. “Hopefully it’ll make them feel like there’s support, that they’re not alone.”On Friday, officials released the names of all eight women and two men who were killed in the incident.They ranged in age from 22 to 94, and included a student from South Korea and a man from Jordan.By Sunday morning, a city-organized fundraiser for the families of those affected had raised almost $1.7-million.Alek Minassian, 25, of Richmond Hill, Ont., has been charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of attempted murder in the incident. Police say they will be laying three additional attempted murder charges.
SURREY, B.C. – The RCMP are examining possible links between two violent incidents in British Columbia’s Okanagan less than 24 hours before a deadly police-involved shooting Tuesday on Vancouver Island.Sgt. Janelle Shoihet says a preliminary investigation has uncovered possible ties between a shooting that severely injured a man in Vernon and a carjacking in Penticton that injured another victim and ended with the theft of his vehicle.The Vernon shooting happened at around noon on Monday, and Shoihet says a suspect was seen leaving the area in a 1996 grey Ford Crown Victoria.Several hours later, RCMP in Penticton were alerted to a man allegedly carrying a gun and matching the description of the suspect in Vernon, followed just minutes afterwards by a call about a carjacking and the theft of a Pontiac Vibe.The suspect escaped and the RCMP say in a news release the Pontiac was traced to a B.C. ferry arriving in Nanaimo on Tuesday morning, when police intercepted the vehicle as it left the vessel.An unnamed driver was killed Tuesday when shots were fired at the ferry terminal in Nanaimo, and the province’s police watchdog is now investigating.“Investigators are actively working to either confirm or eliminate information in order to conclusively determine if the various incidents are connected, if they are connected to a single individual, or if others are involved,” the RCMP says in the release.Police said Thursday they located the Ford Crown Victoria they had been looking for after a public appeal.Const. Kelly Brett also said the 24-year-old man shot in Vernon remains in hospital in serious condition.The RCMP investigation must take care not to impede the Independent Investigations Office as it looks into the Nanaimo shooting, says Supt. Ray Carfantan, assistant district officer of the RCMP’s southeast district.“While we wish to advance these investigations, we must be mindful of the nexus to the ongoing Nanaimo investigation by the Independent Investigation Office of British Columbia,” he says in the news release. “We will continue to support the investigative needs of our units here in the Okanagan to enhance public safety, while respecting that the IIO BC leads the investigation on Vancouver Island.”Ron MacDonald, the chief civilian director of the Independent Investigations Office, has said the agency must determine a number of things in its investigation, including whether the suspect was armed when he was stopped on Tuesday and if there was an exchange of gunfire between the suspect and police.The agency investigates all police incidents that result in death or serious injury.
GRAND FORKS, B.C. – The majority of residents in British Columbia’s Boundary region who were forced from their homes by catastrophic floods are free to return home.The Regional District of Kootenay Boundary said evacuation orders have been lifted for about 1,400 properties, leaving about 326 addresses to go by Monday afternoon.Emergency operations centre co-ordinator Chris Marsh said the evacuation orders have been downgraded to evacuation alerts as a precautionary move, but that more flooding of the catastrophic scale already seen isn’t anticipated.“(The alerts are) simply to allow us a bit of time to make sure the hot weather we’re having this weekend and will continue to have this week does not threaten any homes with continued high water,” Marsh said.A few of the more damaged communities — including the neighbourhood of North Ruckle in Grand Forks — are taking longer to assess, as they require inspections from Interior Health before they can be deemed safe, he said.Twenty pairs of firefighters fanned out across the region this weekend, assessing damage at each property and assigning it a coloured placard based on what they find.While officials say they’ve been happy to find the majority of properties have been deemed safe, some residents will return to find yellow or red placards on their doors, indicating the need for a certified inspection or that the building has been deemed unsafe to occupy.Homes that were placed on evacuation order because of lost road access, rather than safety on the property, will not have placards.Members of the Canadian Armed Forces remain in the province to assist in flood protection preparations. While about 100 were stationed at Grand Forks, they are being redeployed to other parts of the province that might still be faced with flooding.Military personnel continue to bolster a large gabion and sandbag wall to protect residences in the Twin Lakes area, the regional district of Okanagan-Similkameen said Monday.The regional district issued evacuation orders to four properties six kilometres west of Keremeos, due to the threat to life and safety, on Monday.A map posted by the Fraser River Regional District website that shows locations where evacuation orders are in place indicated the most recent being 18 properties around undiked areas around Nicomen Island and nine properties next to Harrison Bay.
OTTAWA – The Liberal government’s sweeping new security legislation would limit — but not eliminate — controversial powers that allow Canada’s spy agency to actively disrupt terror plots.The long-awaited bill introduced Tuesday pulls back on other elements of legislation ushered in by the Conservatives, charts new paths for Canada’s security services in data-crunching and cyberwarfare, and bolsters accountability and review in the often murky world of intelligence.The 150-page bill, unassumingly entitled, “An act respecting national security matters,” follows federal consultations that attracted input from tens of thousands of Canadians.The government’s primary goal with the legislation is to strike a balance between keeping Canadians safe and respecting their rights and freedoms, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale told a news conference.“Canadians unequivocally want accountability, transparency and effectiveness from their security and intelligence agencies,” Goodale said. “They also expect compliance with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and respect for privacy.”The legislation fleshes out Liberal campaign promises to repeal some elements of a contentious omnibus bill brought in by Stephen Harper’s government after a gunman stormed Parliament Hill in October 2014.In the House of Commons, Goodale came under fire from both sides: the Conservatives accused the Liberals of making things harder for security forces, while the NDP complained they’d not done enough to erase the Harper measures.The Conservatives gave the Canadian Security Intelligence Service explicit authority to derail terrorist threats, expanding on the service’s traditional intelligence-collection mandate. However, many Canadians expressed concerns that such disruption activities could violate the Constitution.The Liberal legislation requires CSIS to seek a warrant for any threat reduction measure that would “limit” a right or freedom protected by the charter, and it clarifies that a warrant can only be issued if a judge is satisfied the measure complies with the charter.The bill amends other elements of the Conservative legislation, tightening provisions on information-sharing among federal agencies, redefining terrorist propaganda and narrowing a general prohibition against promoting terrorism offences to the crime of counselling someone to commit a terrorist offence.Another change takes aim at the recurring problem of mistaken no-fly list name matches involving youngsters, allowing the public safety minister to inform parents that their child is not on the roster.In addition, under a revised appeal process, someone’s name would be dropped from the no-fly list if the minister does not deal with their appeal within 120 days. However, the minister would be able to extend the deadline before the first 120-day period expires.The government says the changes are steps toward a longer-term solution to no-fly list headaches.The bill also modernizes the CSIS Act, setting out in law a regime to authorize spy service actions that would otherwise break the law — modelled on an existing system in the Criminal Code for police.For example, the regime would apply to counter-terrorism operations, where providing direction to an undercover source infiltrating an extremist cell could be considered illegal without the special permissions.Other provisions are intended to help CSIS keep pace in the age of Big Data and technological advances that few could have foreseen when the spy service was created in 1984.CSIS would be required to seek the Federal Court’s authorization to keep publicly unavailable datasets that contain personal information largely relating to Canadians.The bill also proposes allowing the cyberspies of the Communications Security Establishment, Canada’s electronic spy agency, to use more advanced methods and techniques to gather intelligence and take action online to defend Canadian networks by halting cyberthreats.The Ottawa-based CSE, a key player in the global Five Eyes partnership, would also be permitted to help the Canadian Armed Forces with operations.A new super-watchdog — the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency — would oversee the intelligence activities of well over a dozen federal agencies, including some, like the Canada Border Services Agency, that have never been subject to such review.The idea is to ensure a more seamless and comprehensive approach to scrutinizing Canadian security agencies.Many have complained the current system doesn’t work as well as it should because separate watchdogs review CSIS, RCMP security agents and the CSE. The existing watchdogs cannot always freely exchange information or collaborate on reviews — a problem the new, overarching body is intended to solve.In addition, a new intelligence commissioner would authorize some intelligence and cybersecurity activities in advance. Establishing a commissioner is designed to build public confidence that agencies are operating with respect for Canadian law and values, the government said.The Liberal bill comes as MPs prepare to head to their ridings for the summer, which means the legislation is unlikely to face serious debate until the fall.— Follow @JimBronskill on Twitter
Two dogs in southwestern Ontario have tested positive for a strain of canine influenza in what health officials are calling the virus’s first known incursion into Canada.The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit said the dogs were brought to Canada from South Korea through the United States late last month and were showing signs of respiratory disease during a veterinary exam the next day.A small number of dogs that came into close contact with the pair also have mild respiratory disease but test results for those animals are not yet available, the agency said.It says the H3N2 canine influenza virus is highly transmissible between dogs and has become widespread in parts of Asia and caused outbreaks in some U.S. locations, particularly in shelters.The health unit said most dogs who develop the disease don’t get seriously ill, and typically show symptoms similar to those from other respiratory infections such as the so-called kennel cough.Dogs who show symptoms of respiratory disease, such as decreased appetite and fever, should be kept away from other dogs for at least two weeks to limit spreading, it said.Health officials said there is no known human risk from the virus, but note the risk that it might mix with human seasonal influenza viruses is “a potential concern.”“The investigation and response are ongoing, and at this point, the concern mainly involves the imported dogs and their close contacts,” they said in a statement.“Affected and exposed dogs are being confined by their owners to help prevent further spread. However, dog owners in Windsor and Essex County should be vigilant and watch for signs of respiratory disease in their dogs, particularly dogs that frequently have contact with other dogs.”
The Canadian Press OTTAWA — The Canadian government is facing heavy pressure to fill a leadership void at an international meeting trying to set the rules for implementing the Paris Climate Change accord.Catherine Abreu, executive director of the Climate Action Network Canada, said host Poland, which is still heavily reliant on coal, is not playing the typical leadership role.The Brexit crisis in the U.K., wild protests against carbon taxes in France, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s planned departure from politics have made all three less inclined to take on their past roles of being at the forefront of pushing the Paris goals.Abreu says there is pressure on Canada at the meeting to fill that void.Officials arrived in the small coal-mining city of Katowice last week to get the nuts and bolts of the rulebook together and the draft is coming out today.Politicians arriving this week have to do the heavier lifting to overcome political disagreements about what the world has to do to limit global warming and how they will all be held accountable for doing it.
EDMONTON — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Alberta’s opposition to a carbon tax won’t influence his cabinet’s decision on whether to approve the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.But Trudeau says climate change cannot be ignored and that one of the easiest ways to fight it is with a carbon tax.He says the federal carbon tax remains affordable to Canadians, with tax incentives to ensure an average family does not get punished.The federal tax has been put in place in Ontario, New Brunswick, Saskatchewan and Manitoba — provinces that have not implemented their own carbon levy.Alberta will soon join that list as Premier Jason Kenney’s new government has promised to kill the province’s carbon tax then fight the federal one in court.When asked if Ottawa would immediately implement a federal carbon tax should the Alberta one be repealed, Trudeau says there will be discussions but says nowhere in Canada will it be free to pollute.The Canadian Press
“The Duchess’ support will help Place2Be hugely in its efforts to shine the spotlight on child mental health, and on the need to tackle these issues at the earliest possible stage, so that children have the brightest possible futures, as they deserve. “By helping to raise awareness of Place2Be’s early intervention work in schools, The Duchess will also help the charity to reach even more of the UK’s most vulnerable children and their families who so desperately need support.”The Duchess also announced she is to be patron of SportsAid. SportsAid helps talented British athletes from the age of 12 who compete in more than 70 sporting disciplines, the majority of which are contested at the Olympic and Paralympic Games. These athletes are nominated to the charity by their sports’ governing bodies based on their performance, commitment and potential. Around 1,500 of them receive a SportsAid Award – which is typically £1,000 per athlete – each year. Past recipients include Sir Bradley Wiggins, Ellie Simmonds OBE, Tom Daley, Baroness Grey-Thompson, Jessica Ennis CBE, David Weir CBE and Rebecca Adlington OBE.Tim Lawler, the charity’s chief executive said, “This is fantastic news for young sports people throughout the UK and especially for those who hope one day to represent the country at the highest level of their sport.“I can think of no greater endorsement of SportsAid than for me to be able to welcome Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge as the charity’s patron. As a champion of future champions she will make a big difference to young athletes, helping them to tell their inspirational stories and maintain the support they need.”SportsAid alumnus Sir Chris Hoy said, “SportsAid played an important role when I was starting out so I know what a huge boost this will be to the young sportsmen and women the charity helps today. As patron Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge will give them the profile they deserve.”SportsAid alumna Rebecca Adlington OBE added, “This is just brilliant news! What a fantastic boost to SportsAid’s work with our next generation of talent. It will certainly help to maintain a living legacy from London 2012.” The Duchess of Cambridge has announced that she has become patron for several more charities.Place2Be is proud to announce that Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge has become Royal Patron of Place2Be.The Duchess’ decision to support Place2Be is a reflection of her personal interest in and commitment to improving the mental health and emotional wellbeing of children in the UK. Benita Refson OBE, Chief Executive and Founding Trustee, said: “Place2Be is hugely honoured that The Duchess of Cambridge has chosen to become our Royal Patron. “This is a tremendous endorsement of the tireless work and commitment of our staff, volunteer counsellors and supporters, as well as of the partner schools with whom we work to help troubled children to overcome emotionally difficult times in their lives.
The ReThink initiative and four-time Grammy Award nominated singer-songwriter Jewel have unveiled a new song, “Home to Me,” to raise awareness for the benefits of public housing and to encourage Americans to rethink their perceptions of public housing.“Home to Me” is available for free download at www.ReThinkHousing.org.Once homeless, Jewel knows firsthand that a home is more than a place to live. “I’m so honored to share ‘Home to Me’ and my hope is that the song causes people to stop and rethink the importance of home. Millions of families, veterans, disabled and elderly citizens rely on public housing and I hope that through this new song people consider the positive impact of public housing,” says ReThink Ambassador Jewel.Earlier this year, ReThink launched a contest asking Americans to share stories, photos and thoughts of why housing matters to them. Hundreds of people participated, and after a voting and judging process, ten finalist entries served as the inspiration to Jewel. A grand prize was awarded to Silvia Kearney of Akron, Ohio, and today, she meets Jewel at music venue The Mint in Los Angeles to hear a performance of the song her entry inspired.“Americans believe that U.S. citizens deserve a safe and decent place to live, but there is little support for public housing. Public housing provides hope for a better future and it gives people a chance to get back on their feet,” says J. Len Williams, Chief Executive Officer at the Housing Authority of Columbus, Ga. “Jewel gives an incredible voice to this issue, and we’re thankful her new song ‘Home to Me’ speaks to the impact a home can have on the lives of individuals, families and communities.”Public housing provides homes and services for approximately 2.2 million people in the U.S.; however, the need is much greater than that. At least half a million people including families, veterans, the elderly and disabled across the U.S. are waiting for public housing to become available.ReThink: Why Housing Matters is an initiative that aims to encourage Americans to realize the benefits that public housing communities offer the greater community. Visit www.ReThinkHousing.org to hear Jewel’s perspective, and experience inspirational stories of public housing – and rethink its impact on individuals, families, and your own community.
Save the Children ambassador Myleene Klass recently traveled to Nepal to see first-hand the impact a lack of access to basic healthcare is having on young lives.Myleene Klass cries as she talks to Soshma, 20, who lost her first child to pneumonia two years ago Credit/Copyright: Suzanne Lee/Save the Children“As a mum, I know how terrifying it is to give birth, even with a trained midwife available to help,” says Klass, “But in Nepal I heard some harrowing stories.“I met mums who had to walk on foot or were carried for up to seven hours in a wicker basket to get to a clinic because there aren’t any ambulances; women who had to give birth by the side of the road without a health worker present; mothers who couldn’t afford basic medical care for their children – the result was horrifying, and always the same: children dying needlessly.”To read the full blog about her trip, click here.
Paul McCartney and The Robin Hood Foundation today announced that McCartney and his band will be performing at Robin Hood’s annual benefit, to be held May 12 at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City.Robin Hood is New York’s largest poverty-fighting organization and every dollar raised at the benefit will go to support the most effective poverty-fighting programs throughout the five boroughs.Paul McCartney is no stranger to Robin Hood. Immediately following the 9/11, he generously donated his legendary talents to the Concert for New York City, which raised more than $36 million to provide direct financial assistance to the families of victims who lost their lives in the terror attacks in New York, Washington, DC, and Pennsylvania. In addition, the money raised provided emergency assistance and support, as well as long-term mental health care and other health services to First Responders, their families and low-income New Yorkers who lost their jobs as a result of the attacks.More recently, McCartney headlined the Robin Hood 12-12-12 Concert for Sandy Relief, which raised more than $50 million in one night to help front-line organizations that were helping victims of Hurricane Sandy throughout New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.“I know that with Robin Hood 100% of the money raised goes right to the organizations helping people on the edge,” said Mr. McCartney. “As an honorary New Yorker, I’m proud to help Robin Hood continue their efforts to help the neediest people get the support and tools they need to build better lives for themselves and their families.”“All of us at Robin Hood are honored to have Paul perform at our Benefit,” said David Saltzman, executive director of Robin Hood. We know from past experience he will blow the doors off the Javits Center with a musical performance that should not be missed; we continue to be overwhelmed by Paul’s generosity of spirit and his willingness to use his incredible talents to aid New Yorkers in need.”Please contact Debbie Fife at 212-245-6570 × 20 or email@example.com for tickets and table information.
Univision Communications Inc. (UCI), the leading media company serving Hispanic America, and the Fusion Media Group (FMG), a division of UCI serving the rising American mainstream, announced today that its October 15 ‘RiseUp AS ONE’ concert – a celebration of music, diversity and unity – will be staged along the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego, California and feature a talented lineup of artists, musicians and performers.Sprint will serve as the presenting sponsor.This unparalleled, bi-lingual live-music event will take place at the Cross Border Xpress (CBX) in San Diego with artists who represent the best of our diverse and inclusive society, including Miguel Bosé, Luis Coronel, Andra Day, Lila Downs, Jorge Drexler, Fonseca, Jesse & Joy, Juanes, Natalia Lafourcade, Los Tigres del Norte, Lupillo Rivera, Residente, Alejandro Sanz, Julieta Venegas and Carlos Vives.The event will be hosted by La Banda’s Alejandra Espinoza and award-winning journalist Jorge Ramos along with FUSION’s Nando Vila and Natasha del Toro. They will be joined by special guests including Gael García Bernal and Jonás Cuarón of “Desierto,” Mía Maestro, Wilmer Valderrama, and more.The concert will be broadcast live coast-to-coast in Spanish on Univision Network and English on FUSION from 7:00-10:00pm, ET (4:00-7:00pm, PT). UCI will cover and promote the concert across its suite of platforms including its 17 broadcast, cable and digital networks and partnership, 126 local television and radio stations and an array of digital brands. For those who wish to attend this free concert, RiseUpAsOne.com will have more information about tickets in the coming days.“The U.S.-Mexico border provides the perfect stage for this amazing event and is a way to highlight diversity and inclusion, despite borders,” said Camila Jimenez Villa, Co-President and Chief Content Officer, Fusion Media Group. “This location and our incredible lineup of award-winning artists will celebrate, through the power of music, the connectedness of our world and the positivity that occurs when we show empathy, respect and openness to one another.”“Sprint is proud to collaborate with Univision and Fusion to bring the RiseUp AS ONE event to life, celebrating our collective community,” said Marcelo Claure, CEO of Sprint. “We are in the business of helping people connect to what matters most to them. This event showcases the very spirit of our mission to keep moving forward without borders or barriers and rising together as ONE voice / Una Voz.”Supporting partners include The California Endowment’s #SchoolsNotPrisons and #Health4All campaigns, Cross Border Xpress (CBX), City of San Diego, San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, City of Imperial Beach, HBO, Revolve Impact, Dots, Variety, Square, PVBLIC, UNICEF and BET.Watch the recently released RiseUp AS ONE launch film narrated by award-winning composer, lyricist, and performer Lin-Manuel Miranda here.Univision and Fusion Media Group recently announced the event’s co-chairs, who come from diverse backgrounds and communities. The list of co-chairs include: José Andrés, Nicolas Berggruen, T Bone Burnett, Ximena Caminos, Kenneth Cole, Jason Collins, Junot Díaz, Ava DuVernay, Emilio & Gloria Estefan, America Ferrera, Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr, Don Graham, Salma Hayek, Samuel L. Jackson, Dr. Henry Jenkins, Quincy Jones, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mía Maestro, Jonathan Olinger, Eduardo Padrón, Shonda Rhimes, Robert Rodriguez, Dr. Robert K. Ross, Sree Sreenivasan, Forest Whitaker, and Ethan Zuckerman.For more information about the event and to sign up for event updates, please visit RiseUpAsOne.com (#RiseUpAsOne).
Camp Southern Ground announces the completion of the Peterson Dining Hall, designed by Perkins + Will, with construction by DPR and Structor Group.Peterson Dining HallCredit/Copyright: Tim HurlseyThis marks the completion of a signature component of the build-out on the growing campus.Camp Southern Ground is located on over 400 acres in Fayetteville, Georgia, and is the non-profit passion project of three time GRAMMY Award-winning artist Zac Brown of the Zac Brown Band.Inspired by his own experience as a camp counselor, Zac’s vision is to create a state-of-the-art facility that is more than the typical camp experience. Camp Southern Ground’s mission is to provide extraordinary experiences for children to recognize and magnify the unique gifts within themselves and others to profoundly impact the world. While at camp there will be activities to challenge, educate and inspire campers, with a special emphasis on children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), learning and attention issues like ADD, ADHD and Dyslexia, social or emotional challenges, and those with family members serving in the military.Located in the center of the campus, the Peterson Dining Hall was tasked with being the heart of Camp Southern Ground.“Peterson Dining Hall is the heart of Camp like the kitchen is the heart of Home. Zac told us that he wanted an iconic building unlike any other, as the centerpiece of Camp – a building that signals to the kids upon arrival that they are in a unique and special place transcending everyday experiences,” says Chris Sciarrone of Perkins + Will.As the first major build-out to the campus, Camp Southern Ground can now begin work towards completion of more projects to prepare for a Summer 2018 opening.“We are thrilled to have the Peterson Dining Hall completed. It is a major functional component of our camp programs and really sets the tone for architectural design, construction quality and sustainability. Now, having the dining hall completed, this puts us one step closer to being able to open for week long, overnight camps which is slated for summer of 2018,” said Mike Dobbs, President and CEO of Camp Southern Ground.The Peterson Dining Hall includes some very special features and is comprised of materials in which the majority was sourced locally. The ceiling is also made from sustainably harvested Mahogany wood donated by Bob Taylor of Taylor Guitars, and the focal point of the dining hall is the 26-foot-high brick fireplace.The state-of-the-art dining hall will serve up to 300 campers plus 150 counselors, staff and volunteers during the summer camping sessions, and has the capacity to serve well over 400 for special events, meetings and conventions in the off season.The structure is not only a modern work of art, but its sustainable features and architectural innovations will enhance energy efficiency as well as support the mission of the camp’s certified organic farm and nutritional education. For instance, from the geothermal system that will heat and cool the building, to the natural zinc building envelope, and the low energy, renewable building materials, this building will save more energy over time. An example of its design innovation is seen in the custom grinder and extractor which converts as much food waste as possible from the kitchen into compost for the farm, while minimizing what goes to the landfill.The Peterson Dining Hall is available to rent for special events and conventions. For more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.Camp Southern Ground is currently in its second phase of fundraising. To learn more or to donate please visit campsouthernground.org.