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August is a month for finding watering holes, hiding in cafes during the heat of the day, and staying up late to watch meteors flash through the sky. All summer long we’ve been able to adventure with our best friends. We’re in our final month here in Colorado and it’s almost time to head back east for the Fall portion of our tour. Whether you came to a festival, a meetup, or just hung out and enjoyed the outdoors with us we want to say thank you. See you soon Blue Ridge Mountains!Below is some of the gear that’s kept us going for FIVE months of #vanlife.Nite Ize Huck and Tuck GlowStreak Collapsible Thrower + LED BallWe had no idea you could improve on the simple tennis ball, but NiteIze certainly has. For years we lost tennis balls to dark ditches and long grass, but no longer! The Huck ‘N Tuck Glowstreak Collapsible Thrower and LED ball allows us to keep a long thrower tucked away in our van with a glow LED ball, ready to tire our pooch out every evening. The Huck ‘N Tuck thrower extends to two-feet long for long arching throws and collapses down to 12 inches so it’s easy to store in the van. The motion-activated LED ball comes to life with a bounce against the ground or the first throw and keeps glowing until it’s stationary for five minutes. You get five more minutes of the LED’s blinking before it turns off. This ensures you can find the ball even when your pup is done running.That strong little LED has 35 hours of glow time so you can play throughout the entire summer. The LED ball is molded, shockproof AND waterproof (and it floats!) This means if you have a pup that likes to swim, you can keep the water games going all night. The ball has ridges so it won’t slip as he makes his way back for another throw. It is also the same size as a tennis ball so it’s compatible with all throwers! Our dog has put this ball to the test, and it’s stood up to his slobber, chewing and his incredible ability to hide the ball from us when we’re done playing.Nat Geo Maps Arkansas River Map Pack BundleExplore with confidence! The Arkansas River Map Back covers 123 miles of the wild Arkansas River in Colorado. It starts with the gentle stream above Leadville and continues onto the rambunctious section through the Royal Gorge. For both fishermen and boaters alike, the maps have detailed information on ownership next to the river including federal, state, local parks, and fishing easements. These maps have a scale of 1 inch = 1/2 mile so you have all the details you need to navigate the rapids or fish with confidence.Our favorite part about this map, and all National Geographic maps, is that they’re built “Backcountry Tough.” They’re made with waterproof and tear-resistant paper with stainless steel staples. We get ours wet, stuff them in our backpacks, and flip through the pages with fervor, and they withstand our beatings every time. Our second favorite part of this map is that it’s set up as a booklet instead of a fold out. That means you can pull it out of your backpack and get to your river section quickly without having to unfold the entire map.Sea To Summit Alpha Cookset 2.2Everything you need to make a home-cooked meal for two and more! The Alpha Cookset changes the way you can cook in the backcountry. This set packs down into itself perfectly, and in a way that doesn’t rattle or come undone while putting miles between you and civilization.The cookset comes with a 1.2L pot, a 2.7L pot, 2 bowls and 2 insulated mugs. It also includes a washcloth packed between the two pots to use for unforeseen spills or to create a small cooking set up area once you get to camp. The pots are made out of hard-anodized aluminum alloy, which is tough as nails and durable enough to withstand backpacking trips and car camping alike. Both pots have strainer lids so making noodles or rice is simple and doesn’t require any extra cooking equipment. They also have textured bottoms so they balance well on cooking stoves. The two pots, bowls, and mugs all fit into the largest pot and secure with a patent-pending Pivot-Lock™ handle. The bowls and mugs are BPA-free, microwave safe, and lightweight. This turns meals from a chore into a backcountry treat. Waking up after a long hike and having a mug with a sleeve and silicon lid to drink coffee out of is a surprising delicacy.HydraPak Stow 500ml This collapsible water bottle is a step above the rest. It weighs 80 percent (yes 80) less than most hard-sided water bottles and collapses into itself for the perfect grab and go bottle. We stick ours in the outer most pocket of our backpacks or slip them in running vests. This bottle is BPA and PVC free so there’s no weird taste, even when filling with hot liquid (up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit!) You can go to the other side of the spectrum and freeze the contents, using them as ice packs in your cooler and then drinking the contents once they melt. The spill-proof nozzle makes it stress-free to throw in a backpack or pack for a longer trip. The bottle comes with a flexible bail handle, making it easy to grab the stow for a drink, or to use as a holder for when you’ve finished the water and roll the bottle up for storing. Our favorite part? The fun colors! HydraPak has plenty of fun colors to choose from, with new patterns coming out this fall. With so many accessories packed into a simple design, it’s a no-brainer to grab this bottle for extra water on any adventure.
Call this a tale of two kinds of credit unions – and know that there is no simple answer to the question: Is a path to survival for credit unions to outsource many IT functions?A reality is that many credit unions – especially smaller ones with assets under perhaps $250 million, roughly 80% of all credit unions – have targeted outsourcing as a key tactic in an environment where providing basic technical services has gotten ever more necessary and also expensive.But another reality – more details later in this piece – is that many bigger credit unions (with assets over $1 billion, roughly 300 out of the nation’s 5800 credit unions) are going the exact opposite route, seeking to differentiate by offering customized, personalized tech.Both groups may be doing exactly what’s right for them.They also wind up on very similar paths. Eventually. Because there’s a lot to like about smart outsourcing regardless of credit union size. The crucial word is “smart.”The Outsourcing BenefitsIt’s about saving money while getting IT that’s as good as, maybe better than, what can be done inhouse.Here are the top places where credit unions outsource:Core systems. About 2500 credit unions, nearly one in two, now get core processing through a hosted or service bureau solution. The core itself resides outside the credit union. So do the employees who work on it and they in fact typically are employees of the hosting company.Experts say many credit unions can cut their core costs by 25 to 50% with a hosted solution.Going the hosted route involves trade offs. Independence is lost. It’s not a solution that would work for every credit union.But for many smaller credit unions, hosted cores are a lifeline that let the credit union provide members with the services they want but at costs the credit union can afford.Compliance. Amid the thicket of federal requirements – involving everything from the Patriot Act to BSA – more credit unions are turning to outsourced solutions, sometimes provided via state leagues. The big advantage is that the credit union stays compliant with regulations that it may not fully understand. Mobile banking. Mobile may be the primary channel in future years but, right now, of the credit unions that offer members a mobile banking app about 98% use off the shelf packages where the technology and much of the servicing is done by a vendor. One vendor has about a 25% market share, and that means one in four credit unions use essentially the same app. But the credit unions that use off the shelf apps like the convenience and reliability. CISO as a service. CU 2.0 founder Kirk Drake talks about how many credit unions would benefit if they turned over the bulk of their IT security to an outsourced provider. That would mean lower costs and very likely higher skill levels. As the tech IT battles intensify, the need for ever better security climbs. Watch more credit unions explore third party CISO alternatives.Inventive credit union leadership is finding still more places to outsource. That’s because outsourcing brings benefits to credit unions.The real benefit may be that when a credit union uses outsourced solutions for many functions that frees management to focus on improving core competencies which, at a credit union, revolve around better knowing and servicing members and finding ways to upsell members into more services. All of this is hard – especially because the competition in many cases are money center banks with vast resources. That’s why success is more likely for the credit unions that go after member focused improvements with their full energy.The Other Perspective: Homebrewing TechJust as many credit unions are looking to outsource more of their functions, some are looking to bring work back inhouse. Case in point: Congressional Federal Credit Union where CTO David Hufnagel told me that in fact he planned to introduce a home banking product that explicitly gives him substantially more opportunity to offer custom features. Why? “We want to differentiate ourselves in the market.”Hufnagel is right. Custom home banking is a stand out because it is rare. A handful of vendors provide the bulk of off-the-shelf home banking tools. As digital becomes the primary channel, institutions like Congressional Federal are exploring the how-to of taking more control of those channels so that they can own the member points of contact.That’s smart.Congressional Federal also has a membership with an unusual trait: most are paid once monthly and that, said Hufnagel, introduces special challenges for members. He wants more digital tools that can accommodate that pay schedule.Congressional Federal is not alone in this charge. For instance, a growing number of large credit unions – generally with assets over $1 billion – are now deploying home-brewed mobile banking apps. They cite the ability to customize, both the look and the tools, as the key driver.They also like having a mobile banking app that is not twin to the many thousands of other apps in the Apps Store.In many cases, incidentally, taking back control of mobile banking will reduce costs because most third party packages involve per user fees and as the number of users climb into the hundreds of thousands, for some credit unions million, those monthly checks are tough to write.How many credit unions are doing this, either with home banking or mobile banking? Perhaps as many as 100.That number will grow as credit unions differentiate themselves as a central competitive strategy. Your Road AheadJust maybe the biggest and smaller credit unions have more in common than they might think. Here’s the irony. Probably the smart move even for credit unions that want to bring back inside tools they consider mission critical – such as home banking or mobile banking – is to outsource technology that is not mission critical. That puts this tech in the domain of a company that does it for a living and frees the credit union to focus on the areas where it can in fact differentiate itself.There have not been many members who have praised a credit union for its Bank Secrecy Act compliance.And just about no member knows what a core system does.Start looking for services and technologies to turn over to third parties. And put a stronger focus on touch points that matter to members and make these places where the credit union can puts its own spin on what it provides.Look for ways to differentiate. That’s how to stay ahead in the 21st century. 20SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Robert McGarvey A blogger and speaker, Robert McGarvey is a longtime journalist who has covered credit unions extensively, notably for Credit Union Times as well as the New York Times and TheStreet, … Web: www.mcgarvey.net Details
continue reading » NCUA headquarters ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr For credit unions making plans for medium to long-term growth, the discussion often comes down to what charter gives them the most flexibility to grow? For instance, if they are a community charter, will they have more opportunities to expand under the state’s laws or do they have enough flexibility under NCUA’s more stringent regulations? If the credit union doesn’t want to become a community charter, will it have the ability to take in enough groups to expand their membership footprint?In June, NCUA issued an important legal opinion letter for those credit unions considering using the multiple SEG approach. When this letter is read in conjunction with NCUAs updated field of membership regulations it means that federal credit unions have much more expansion flexibility than they had just months ago.When a multiple SEG credit union is seeking to add a new group to its membership, one of the most basic things the credit union must demonstrate is that the group is within “reasonable proximity” to the credit union’s service area. But what is reasonable proximity and is there a specific geographic limit restraining the acquisition of new groups? In a legal opinion letter by NCUAs Office of General Counsel, the answer is:
Sep 25, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – While antiviral-resistant H1N1 influenza viruses remain rare, clinicians should watch for two particular kinds of H1N1 cases that seem more likely to give rise to viruses resistant to oseltamivir (Tamiflu), the World Health Organization (WHO) said today.So far, 28 oseltamivir-resistant viruses have been detected worldwide, the WHO said in today’s statement. Twelve of these were linked to use of the drug for postexposure prophylaxis, and 6 were in patients who had severe immunosuppression. Four more cases involved other patients being treated with the drug, and 2 patients were not on the drug.In view of the findings, the WHO urged clinicians to watch for resistance in:Patients with severely compromised or suppressed immune systems who have prolonged H1N1 illness and have received oseltamivir (especially if for a long time) but still have evidence of viral replicationPeople who receive preventive oseltamivir after exposure to another infected person but then get sick anyway”In both of these clinical situations, health care staff should respond with a high level of suspicion that oseltamivir resistance has developed,” the WHO said. “Laboratory investigation should be undertaken to determine whether resistant virus is present, and appropriate infection control measures should be implemented or reinforced to prevent spread of the resistant virus.”The agency also recommended conducting epidemiologic investigations in such situations to find out if a resistant virus has spread to anyone else.Person-to-person transmission of resistant H1N1 viruses has not yet been clearly shown, the WHO said. Local transmission may have occurred in some situations, but it didn’t lead to ongoing or wider transmission.The agency also said the resistant viruses do not seem to cause different or more severe symptoms. Except for immunocompromised patients, those infected with resistant viruses have had typical flu cases.The WHO does not generally recommend using oseltamivir to prevent H1N1 illness, today’s statement noted. For people who have been exposed and are at risk for a severe case, an alternative is close monitoring and early treatment if symptoms develop.In August the agency recommended against antiviral treatment for previously healthy people with uncomplicated H1N1 cases. It stressed prompt antiviral treatment for those with severe illness, pregnant women, and people with conditions such as asthma, obesity, or diabetes.See also: Sep 25 WHO statement on antivirals and resistancehttp://www.who.int/csr/disease/swineflu/notes/h1n1_antiviral_use_20090925/en/index.htmlAug 21 CIDRAP News story “WHO: In treating H1N1, save antivirals for high-risk cases”
North Korea closed its borders in January when coronavirus cases in neighboring China began to skyrocket. Kim’s regime has said it has no confirmed infections from the virus but the US is “fairly certain” it has cases because of a noticeable lack of military activity, General Robert Abrams, commander of US Forces Korea, told reporters in a teleconference briefing in March.Food shortages are common in North Korea, which is one of the world’s poorest states. In the 1990s, a famine killed as much as 10 percent of the population, according to some estimates.The virus could make things worse. The United Nations’ World Food Program warned this week that economic hardship caused by the pandemic may lead to starvation in the developing world. The WFP, which has operations in North Korea, has said about 40% of the population is undernourished, adding “food insecurity and malnutrition are widespread.”Kim was conspicuously absent from birthday celebrations on April 15 of his grandfather and state founder Kim Il Sung. He has not been seen since a politburo meeting on April 11, raising speculation about his condition.The state-run Korean Central News Agency reported that Kim on Wednesday sent a message to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Letters of this sort are reported frequently.US officials said Monday they were told Kim was in critical condition after undergoing cardiovascular surgery last week and they were unsure of his current health. Meanwhile, South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s office said that Kim was conducting “normal activities” in a rural part of the country assisted by close aides and no special movements were detected.The health of North Korea’s leader is one of the most closely guarded secrets in the isolated state, known only to a few people in its inner circle. US President Donald Trump said Tuesday he doesn’t know about Kim’s health, adding that he might reach out to check on him.Topics : Consumers in North Korea’s capital this week have been “panic buying” food staples, causing some store shelves to empty, according to a news service that specializes in the country.The purchases may be due to stricter coronavirus measures on the way for Pyongyang and don’t appear related to reports this week that leader Kim Jong Un may be seriously ill, NK News reported, citing people who live in Pyongyang and were able to communicate outside the country. Shortages were initially limited to imported fruit and vegetables and then moved on to other goods, it said.Radio Free Asia also reported last week that the prices of food staples in North Korea were rising sharply because of panic buying.
Gov. Wolf: Investing $15 Million to Expand Access to High-Quality Affordable Child Care, Reduce Waiting Lists
Gov. Wolf: Investing $15 Million to Expand Access to High-Quality Affordable Child Care, Reduce Waiting Lists SHARE Email Facebook Twitter December 04, 2019 Government That Works, Human Services, Press Release Governor Tom Wolf today announced the award of $15 million to expand access to high-quality, affordable child care to more than 900 infants and toddlers around Pennsylvania. The investment comes from the 2019-2020 budget, which included the $15 million investment in federal funds to expand access to high-quality care and reduce the subsidized child care waiting list.“Investing in early education and the future of our youngest learners – and the future of our commonwealth – is a top priority for my administration,” said Gov. Wolf. “The first few years of a child’s life have a profound influence on brain development and growth. My administration continues to invest in early education to expand access to quality programs so children can have the opportunity to excel – helping children start school ready to become life-long learners.”Pennsylvania’s subsidized child care program, Child Care Works, helps families with incomes below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guideline access high-quality child care through financial assistance. This supports the family’s ability to work and go to school while their children spend time in early learning environments that support their development and school readiness.This investment supports eligible, low-income Pennsylvania families who have young children, specifically families with a parent or parents who are working or pursuing training opportunities, such as vocational or job-specific training, pursuing 2-year or 4-year post-secondary degree programs, internships, English as a second language programs, apprenticeships, and more.This initiative is a part of Gov. Wolf’s Statewide Workforce, Education, and Accountability Program (SWEAP) that seeks to support working Pennsylvanians through expanded opportunities for workforce development, skills training, and supports like child care that help Pennsylvanians from birth to retirement.Funding will be distributed through the Early Learning Resource Centers (ELRCs) around Pennsylvania for STAR 3 and 4 programs. Adding more infant and toddler slots will reduce the time infants and toddlers spend on the Child Care Works waiting lists and ensures providers have the resources, supports, and fiscal stability to achieve and maintain high-quality services. It also strengthens and maintains continuity of care for infants and toddlers in STAR 3 and 4 programs with a seamless transition to existing pre-kindergarten slots within those same programs.“The cost of child care and access to early learning programs can be a significant barrier for low-income families – often limiting their ability to go to work knowing their children are safe and cared for,” said Department of Human Services Secretary Teresa Miller. “By investing in child care opportunities, parents can confidently enter the workforce knowing their child is receiving high-quality care and early learning support. Access to care also creates lifelong impacts to break down the intergenerational cycle of poverty for the future of families across the commonwealth for years to come.”Education is a top priority for Gov. Wolf. In addition to the $15 million in federal funds to reduce waiting lists for high-quality child care, the fiscal year 2019-2020 budget provides $5 million to expand home-visiting programs for pregnant women and at-risk infants and toddlers, and $5 million for wrap-around services so parents can attend college or other training to get skills for family-sustaining jobs. The budget also provided $30 million to expand Pennsylvania’s Pre-K Counts and Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program.For more information on child care and early child development opportunities in Pennsylvania, visit www.findchildcare.pa.gov.
44 Belgrave St, Balmoral.This sleek and stylish home has sold at auction for $985,000. Inside 44 Belgrave St, Balmoral.Mr Batchelor said buyer interest was continuing to increase in the area.“At the moment, we have more buyers than stock,” he said. The home at 44 Belgrave St, Balmoral.Marketing agent Luke Batchelor of Place Real Estate, Kangaroo Point said the sale of the home at 44 Belgrave St, Balmoral had set a new price point in the area for homes of a similar nature.“It’s a quality home with an entry level price,” he said.More from newsCrowd expected as mega estate goes under the hammer7 Aug 2020Hard work, resourcefulness and $17k bring old Ipswich home back to life20 Apr 2020Inside 44 Belgrave St, Balmoral.“You don’t often see three-bedroom homes of this calibre sell in the area for under one million.”According to the latest data from CoreLogic, the median house price in the suburb of Balmoral is $1,002,500. Inside 44 Belgrave St, Balmoral.Mr Batchelor said the new owners, a young couple, were first-home buyers and local to the area. The recently renovated three-bedroom, two-bathroom home sits on 405sq m of land and has an array of indoor and outdoor living and entertaining spaces. Inside 44 Belgrave St, Balmoral.“There’s a lot of growth, and people are attracted to the location.“It’s close to Oxford St, schools and the city, but it’s still an affordable pocket to buy a decent home in.”
PFZW, the healthcare sector scheme, lost 0.4% in 2018The pension fund attributed the outperformances to rising house prices and low vacancy rates, corporate transport infrastructure, and smaller losses than expected on credit risk sharing.It said it had only slightly adjusted its asset allocation last year, with holdings of infrastructure and insurance raised to 3.9% and 2.5%, respectively, at the expense of its stake in developed market equities and alternative equity strategies.The scheme also increased its allocation to residential mortgages to 1.1%, while reducing its exposure to credit to 2%. It added that its 9.8% allocation to alternative equity strategies had in particular underperformed, incurring a loss of 8.3%.PFZW has returned 8% on average since it was established in 1971.The healthcare scheme reported a cost reduction for pension administration of €2.80 to €62.10 per participant, but said that achieving its target of €60 would remain a challenge, as it had to invest in automation.PFZW reduced its asset management costs by 4bps to 0.45%, and lowered transaction costs by 1bps to 0.09%, thanks to a lower transaction volume for equity and commodities.PFZW has more than 1.2m active participants, almost 1.1m deferred members and almost 465,000 pensioners. At the end of last March, its funding stood at 100.9%. At 2020-end, its coverage ratio must be at least 104.3% in order to prevent pension cuts in 2021. The scheme added that it had invested more than €32bn in investments linked to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – equating to 16% of its entire assets – and had fully integrated its ESG policy across its entire investment process.Returns breakdownPFZW said that, despite its overall loss of 0.4% last year, it had achieved an outperformance of 0.44% relative to its benchmark, largely driven excess returns from property, infrastructure and credit risk sharing allocations. Dutch healthcare scheme PFZW says it is unlikely to meet its sustainability target within its current mandate, as its staff has had difficulty finding suitable investments.The €217bn scheme had said it expected to reach a total of €20bn of investments in solutions for climate change, water scarcity, healthcare and food security by 2020 – quadrupling its stake in such investments relative to 2015.However, according to its annual report for 2018, at the end of December it had invested €14bn in the four themes, with €2bn to be added next year. It said its investment teams had struggled to find assets offering sufficient returns while also meeting its strict criteria for sustainable investments.Since 2015, PFZW has reduced the carbon footprint of its investments from 339 tons to 240 tons of emitted CO2 per €1m of corporate turnover. Its target is a 50% reduction by 2020.
Star Advertiser 12 August 2019Family First Comment: For couples struggling with conception, smoking weed isn’t a joke; it sends their chances of having a baby up in smoke. In an article published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, researchers say they want doctors and patients trying to conceive to be aware that smoking marijuana might make it more difficult. How? • erectile dysfunction in men and infertility in women.• decreased sperm count.• delayed or no ovulation• prenatal exposure to marijuana and problems for the childFor couples struggling with conception, smoking weed isn’t a joke; it sends their chances of having a baby up in smoke.In an article published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, researchers say they want doctors and patients trying to conceive to be aware that smoking marijuana might make it more difficult. How?>> THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, acts on receptors in the hypothalamus, pituitary gland and reproductive organs, making it more difficult to conceive.In women the hypothalamus produces gonadotropin-releasing hormone, which leads to a cascade of other hormones needed for ovulation and to prepare the uterus for a fertilized egg. Pituitary problems can contribute to erectile dysfunction in men and infertility in women.>> Another problem: decreased sperm count. A Danish study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology found that smoking marijuana more than once a week reduced sperm count by 29% in guys 18 to 28 years old.>> Marijuana could delay or prevent ovulation if smoked more than three times in the past three months.>> One more caution: Authors of a study called “It’s Not Your Mother’s Marijuana,” published in Clinics in Perinatology, point out that if you’re pregnant and smoke today’s superpowered weed, prenatal exposure to marijuana can result in problems with your child’s executive functioning skills, attention, behavior and school achievement later on.https://www.staradvertiser.com/2019/08/12/features/marijuana-use-may-lower-sperm-count-block-ovulation/
Sharing is caring! Photo of the bus. Image via: St Lucia StarCASTRIES, St Lucia, CMC – At least 13 people were killed when a bus carrying mourners from a funeral plunged into the sea at Mount Sion, in Choiseul, south east of here on Thursday night.Police and fire officials at the scene said that there was only one survivor in the worst accident in the history of the island.They said bodies of the accident victims were spread out on the beach. The accident occurred at around 8. pm (local time).CMC NewsRegional 13 people killed in traffic accident in St Lucia by: – November 11, 2011 Share Share Share Tweet 33 Views no discussions