Friday, December 23, 2011
EVERY DAY IS CHRISTMAS...
Every day is Christmas when you have the kind of mind,
That stores up all the goodness and the sweetness it can find
When you don't need an occasion, to spread a bit of cheer,
But just keep on a-giving, of yourself throughout the year
Every day is Christmas, with a gaily wrapped surprise,
When you've learned to see the friendship in someone else's eyes.
When you try a little harder, and complain a little less,
Holding fast to all the fervor of the faith that you possess
Every day is Christmas, when you've found that you can be
More concerned with words like 'you' and less with 'I' and 'me'.
When it's fun to do a favor, and to lend a helping a hand,
When being understood means less, than when you understand
Every day is Christmas, with a beauty deeply cast,
When you find it doesn't matter, if you're first or if you're last
When you can face your conscience, and be glad of who you are,
Then every day is Christmas, for you'll have friends near and far.
~ Author Unknown
May the spirit of Christmas bring you peace,
The gladness of Christmas give you hope,
The warmth of Christmas grant you love.
appreciate all your help and support as we journey here together....
wishing you and yours all the blessings of christmas and may they follow you throughout the new year and give you peace love and joy..............
blessings and hugs..................lita
Friday, December 16, 2011
My Holiday Wish......
My holiday wish is that we may
See good in those who pass our way;
Find in each a worthy trait
That we shall gladly cultivate;
See in each one passing by
The better things that beautify
A softly spoken word of cheer,
A kindly face, a smile sincere;
I hope each day that we may view
The things that warm one's heart anew;
The kindly deed that can't be bought
That only from good are wrought,
A burden lightened here and there,
A brother lifted from despair,
The aged ones freed from distress;
The lame, the sick, brought happiness.
Grant that before each sun has set
We'll witness deeds we can't forget;
A soothing hand to one in pain,
A sacrifice for love not gain;
A word to ease the troubled mind
Of one whom fate has dealt unkind.
So, friend, my wish is that we may
See good in all who pass our way.
~By Phil Perkins
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Building Schools out of Trash
Can trash help to bring education to the poorest on the planet? Yes, it can! Hug It Forward, a San Diego-based non-profit organization, empowers communities to build new schools in Guatemala on a shoestring budget by turning plastic soda bottles and other trash into raw construction materials. Many benefits for the community, kids and our eco-system included.
Building up houses and schools is a pretty expensive undertaking in our hemisphere, widely funded by governments and local authorities. The situation in developing countries isn't that different, except the fact that comprehensive funds are widely missing. But there is a way to turn distant dreams of education into reality, by harnessing the power of community and collaboration.
First, each child in the village is asked to collect at least 20 plastic bottles. The students and volunteers
stuff the bottles with plastic waste, such as Styrofoam, snack wrappers and plastic bags for insulation.
The more compacted, the sturdier the building blocks and the less garbage remaining on the streets.
The bottles were bound between layers of chicken wire which are attached to a frame (usually made of
reinforced concrete, but made of metal in this picture). Students stuff waste plastic in between the bottles.
Up to three layers of cement mixed with sand is applied to the outside of the bottles,
with paint adding the finishing touch.
DONE! Isn't that an awesome and simple idea worth spreading?
It's not just about providing the much-needed educational infrastructure for poorer communities - streets get cleaned of non-biodegradable trash and environmental awareness is raised about recycling and proper trash management. Fostering community leadership and teaching new skills that can be used to gain employment or on other community projects is just another side-product. The ownership of the schools is given directly to the kids, because they built them up with their own hands and commitment. As reported on the Hug It Forward Website, the coming together as one during the project has a far reaching uniting-effect on the communities.
You would never know the main ingredient if they did not leave cutouts...
The Bottle School Project, by Hug It Forward, built their first school in Granados, Guatemala, in October 2009, over 5,000 plastic bottles were used to build two classrooms, containing 2053lbs of trash and using 9720lbs of cement. 297 children and youth currently attend the school, which serves a municipality of 13,860 people throughout 95.75 square miles. Since the completion of the Granados project, Hug It Forward has built 14 Bottle Schools and has four more in the works. Learn all about Hug It Forward's Bottle Schools in this Video
Insulating walls with plastic bottles stuffed with inorganic trash was pioneered in Guatemala by the organization Pura Vida. Instead of the common cinder-block walls used in Central America, "eco-bricks" are stacked in between chicken wire, and covered in cement. The bottles are used solely as insulation; the buildings are supported by professionally built, structurally sound frames. This method of construction is both eco-friendly and economical, and independent structural analysis has testified to the strength and safety of the buildings.
Hug It Forward works to support and empower communities in Guatemala
to build Bottle Schools using discarded plastic bottles and non-biodegradable
trash. Bottle School projects have many benefits, including:
Providing much needed educational infrastructure for poorer communities
Cleaning the streets of non-biodegradable trash
Teaching environmental awareness, recycling and proper trash management
Fostering community leadership
Teaching new skills that can be used to gain employment or on other community projects
Spending capital within the local community where the school is being built
Giving kids ownership of the school, because they build it with their own hands
Uniting communities, they come together as one during the project
If you'd like to know more about the Project visit their Website
or spread the word about their project via Facebook Here or Twitter Here. Hug It Forward's mission is to unite people across the world: we are all one people.
One HUGE thing you can do: Instead of getting gifts this year, why not ask your friends to make a donation to Bottle Schools in your honor? Your sacrifice will enable kids to build their own school and have the chance of an education and a brighter future. Donate Your Christmas HERE!
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