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Little Stevie Takes First Steps

stevie 2Congratulations to proud Dad Mikael on Stevie’s first steps!stevie 1

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Admin Team Get Jammy

Betty potsJust some of the many RNLI Bettys Pots the admin team have labelled for the Llandudno Lifeboat RNLI.   The idea for Betty’s 5p Pots first came from Betty Frith, who was the Honorary Treasurer for over 20 years at the Hertford branch of the (RNLI). Since then they have taken off around the country and are flying out at Llandudno.  So next time your near a Lifeboat Station and your willing to save up those 5p’s, simply call in, pick up  a jar and start collecting.

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Shout Out To Steve

Steve ShoutBig shout out to everyone who helped to promote Llandudno Lifeboat RNLI Fundraising Supporters Group on the photo shoot for their upcoming day trip to Liverpool, raising funds for the Llandudno Lifeboat.  Great to see the local community getting involved.  Steve certainly enjoying dressing up in the crew kit, especially as he’s not a fan of being in a boat on water!

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Successful Beach Clean

Another great turnout for the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) down at Deganwy Beach last week.  Print Approved joined MCS along with local businesses and residents to help clear a stretch of beach on the North Wales Coast.  This time, plastic didn’t appear to be the main culprit with finds from fishing lines/nets to a battered metal framed deck chair, oh and one very large heavy object, a concrete lamp post!  Local council are being informed of this and will make the necessary arrangements to have it removed.  Well done to everyone who turned out to help.Deganwy Beach Clean (2)

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Plight of the Snow Leopard

Recently I was reading an article about the Welsh Mountain Zoo and their Silk Road Project.  The project was started to raise funds to build completely new accommodation for their Snow Leopards, which would create a representation of the mountainous regions in which this endangered species lives. The Silk Road will also forge links with China and the Himalayan Mountains, exploring the Chinese culture, language, environment and species that originate from there.

The new accommodation for these beautiful creatures will be significantly larger than the current enclosure, and will have a more varied environment and enhanced enrichment opportunities.

The Snow Leopards at the Welsh Mountain Zoo are part of the European Breeding Programme and have already produced two beautiful cubs who have also moved on to create more breeding pairs, helping the survival of this amazing species.

All of us here at Print Approved couldn’t let the opportunity pass us by without donating to this worthwhile cause for these magnificent, majestic creatures could all too well become extinct if it wasn’t for the dedication of people like those at the Welsh Mountain Zoo.

 

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African Update – Spring 2018

Mikael has recently finished training to become an Official Tourist Guide in Gambia (OTG).  He is now a official uniformed and badged freelance, private tour guide and is bound by a strict code of conduct and are licensed by the Gambian Tourism Authority.

The OTG scheme is there to enhance visitors’ holiday experience, and at the same time improve the job situation of the young, reduce poverty through improved incomes and to reduce the harassment of tourists visiting The Gambia.

An OTG can be booked for almost anything from a simple task like taking you around the local shops, to something more engaging such as going with you on an up-country trip lasting a number of days.  They can be very useful by taking you to locations you may otherwise not know about, revealing and explaining some local customs, and acting as your translator.

Recently Mikael took a family of Dutch tourists to t he Kachikally Crocodile Pool , in Bakau. The Pool is known by local Gambians for its healing powers and as a place where people come to pray for blessings.  Many Gambians  with long-term ailments or misfortune go to the pool for luck and offer kola nuts, cloth and other offerings to the Bojang family and the crocs in return. Sacred rituals are still occasionally held here; often accompanied by dancing and drumming, most of the time, however, the only visitors are tourists

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2018 SUPPORTED CHARITIES

This year we’ve decided to shake things up a bit and do something entirely different than in previous years.  Our support this year goes to what we have aptly named as ‘Everything Coastal’.  We’ll be supporting the Marine Conservation Society, the RNLI and family run organisation, Less Plastic.

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is the UK’s leading marine charity. Their work helps to ensure that our seas are healthy, pollution free and protected.

“Our seas are under immense pressure: too many fish are being taken out, too much rubbish is being thrown in and too little is being done to protect our precious wildlife. Our vision is for seas full of life where nature flourishes and people thrive”. Marine Conservation Society (MCS).

We’re supporting Less Plastic because, like us they are passionate about raising awareness of the issues caused by the ocean plastic crisis, with the aim offer alternative ways to keep our oceans free of plastic, easy things we can all do with the ultimate goal of making a difference.

Last but certainly not least the RNLI.  Some of us may forget that we live on an island and the RNLI is a voluntary organisation who save lives at sea. Every day throughout any given year, people of all walks of life get into danger in the water.

Earlier in the year we made a start in volunteering for the MCS beach clean up in North Wales and what proved to be a challenging afternoon picking up all sorts of rubbish from plastic cotton buds, old fishing nets to parts of masts from sailing boats whilst battling stormy, wet, freezing and blustery weather, although the seagulls were having a field day swooping down to catch the copious amounts of squid that were washing up onto the jetty.

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Charity of the Year 2018 – TBC

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News From Africa

Mikael has spent the last few months cultivating his groundnut farm otherwise known as peanuts.  Just before the start of the rains, usually around June, Mikael like all other farmers in The Gambia, will clear their fields using what’s called the ‘slash and burn’ method, afterwards they brush their fields, hopefully in time for the first rainfall. As soon as the rains start the land is ploughed and the seed-nuts are sown.

The rainy season is coming to an end and during this time Mikael will be harvesting his crop. The plants  are uprooted and laid on raised platforms to dry out. Once dried out the plant is thrashed to release the nuts. They are then sorted through a  spinning colander which has rotating cylinders with holes in or meshed panniers. The nuts are then weighed, graded and transported to various collection points around The Gambia.

The local name for peanuts is gerte. Swadou, Mikael’s wife will take the groundnuts to the food market where they are sold wholesale in little bags. The nuts are offered in a variety of styles, including roasted, salted, sugar-coated, and sometimes boiled. They are also sold in small tomato pot sizes for about 5.00 dalasi per pot. The shells from Mikael’s groundnuts are used as fertilizer on his farm.

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Africa Update and Baby Stevie

Mikael has spent the last few months cultivating his groundnut farm otherwise known as peanuts.   Just before the start of the rains, usually around June, Mikael like all other farmers in The Gambia, will clear their fields using what’s called the ‘slash and burn’ method, afterwards they brush their fields, hopefully in time for the first rainfall.  As soon as the rains start the land is ploughed and the seed-nuts are sown.

The rainy season is coming to an end and during this time Mikael will be harvesting his crop. The plants  are uprooted and laid on raised platforms to dry out. Once dried out the plant is thrashed to release the nuts. They are then sorted through a  spinning colander which has rotating cylinders with holes in or meshed panniers. The nuts are then weighed, graded and transported to various collection points around The Gambia.

The local name for peanuts is gerte. Swadou, Mikael’s wife will take the groundnuts to the food market where they are sold wholesale in little bags. The nuts are offered in a variety of styles, including roasted, salted, sugar-coated, and sometimes boiled. They are also sold in small tomato pot sizes for about 5.00 dalasi per pot. The shells from Mikael’s groundnuts are used as fertilizer on his farm.

Baby Stevie is doing really well and growing so fast, he will go to market with Swadou wrapped in a ‘Khanga’ which is a shortish piece of cloth tied around the torso, so the baby sits low on the back.  Being carried this way is quite safe and for much of his young life this is how he will be carried.

 

Baby Steve

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