Community Gardens Make a Bountiful Oasis for East African Villages

In the Horn of Africa, barren landscapes and dirt fields surround large riverbeds that are totally dry. Herds of goats and camels, tired and emaciated, walk through parched lands in search of food and water. It’s the worst drought the region has seen in 60 years.

As ChildFund International continues its drought emergency operations across this region, it also remains focused on long-term development projects aimed at minimizing food crises.

In Kenya’s Turkana region, the Food for Assets program, operated by ChildFund International in conjunction with the U.N. World Food Program, is producing crops in a desert.

Canadian Fashion Guru Peter Nygård Jumps on Board to Sponsor Regatta

Peter Nygård, when asked by Bahamian musician “King” Eric Gibson to sponsor the 58th National Family Island Regatta this April in George Town, Exuma, he simply “jumped on board.”

“There was no hesitation on his behalf, and he asked for no publicity or nothing in return for his actions,” recalled Gibson, who befriended Nygård 30 years prior when he first introduced him to local Bahamian music. “What he has done is directly from his heart, helping the people and communities that need help.”

Technology and Tots – Guidelines for Making “Screen Time” Meaningful

<b>Technology and Tots – Guidelines for Making “Screen Time” Meaningful</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – It’s a fact: children today are surrounded by all types of digital media from a very young age. Educators, parents and caregivers are left with the task of navigating through a multitude of handheld games, toys and online resources while debating the value of these different options.

Fortunately, research shows that computers can have important benefits for even young children, including language development, literacy development, social development and the development of important problem-solving skills. Here are some guidelines for the use of computers based on both current research in child development and the professional opinions of early childhood educators:

* Stick to a firm time limit for computer use. Recommended time for preschoolers (3-5 years) is 20-30 minutes per day.

* Computers should supplement — and not replace — activities and materials such as art, books, music, outdoor exploration, experimenting with writing materials, dramatic play and socializing with other children.

* Guide and be on hand to help your child, answer questions and interact with your child as she works on the computer.

* Look for online games, resources and Web sites with educational value.

One spot to visit for educational content is PBS KIDS Island (www.readytolearnreading.org), which provides free research-based reading games and activities for children, parents, caregivers and teachers to use at home or in the classroom. PBS KIDS Island takes place in a virtual world, where children build an online island by playing games that feature beloved PBS KIDS television characters from award-winning shows, including Sesame Street, Super WHY!, WordWorld, Martha Speaks and Between the Lions. Games allow players to build and practice the critical skills needed to learn to read, like rhyming and letter identification. Parents and teachers are able to access children’s accounts to see how far their children have progressed in the game.

The site is an outgrowth of PBS KIDS Raising Readers, a multi-faceted initiative that focuses on using media to help children ages two to eight build reading skills. The initiative is funded in part by a Ready To Learn grant from the U.S. Department of Education, part of a cooperative agreement with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), PBS and The Ready To Learn Partnership. For more information, visit www.readytolearnreading.org.

Foreclosures Open Up New Market

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – To some, the current real estate market looks dismal. A weak labor market, rising mortgage rates and high energy prices have caused many American homeowners to lose their properties. To others, the real estate markets looks ripe for investment.

Deer Park Development Corporation, a company with over 30 years of experience in the real estate market, has developed a new approach for investors hoping to purchase and resell foreclosed properties for profit. Foreclosed houses sell at lower prices, helping investors buy properties with less money upfront. In the past, housing prices reflected overinflation -; as the market evens out, the mortgage crisis might actually help stabilize home prices.

Marty O’Malley, CEO of Deer Park Development Corporation, noted that the current real estate market represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the astute buyer. “With one in every 360 homes in foreclosure nationwide, the opportunity to buy distressed property at significant discounts to their original appraisals is extensive,” said O’Malley. “In Clark County, Nev., one in every eighty homes is in foreclosure, and on top of those statistics, one in every two homes is underwater, meaning that it’s not worth the amount of money owed on it.”

With this amount of inventory on the market, there are situations out there that present themselves as profitable ventures. Not all of the foreclosures are money-making deals, but with experience, professional investors know when and what to buy, so they can make successful ventures.

Being an individual investor in the real estate market can be a dangerous proposition for the inexperienced. But investors, in tying themselves to a group of experienced real estate players, can use experts’ hard-earned knowledge to turn a profit in the down real estate market.

“Allowing individual investors to participate in ownership through direct partnership creates a risk-free vehicle for foreclosure players to work with,” said O’Malley,

For additional information, visit Deer Park Development Corporation’s Web site at deerparkdevelopmentcorp.com or contact Capital Group Advisors at 954-297-0706.

Struggling Market? Now Is the Time to Buy

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Maintenance costs are up, home values are falling and states are seeing more foreclosures than sales. But terrible times for homeowners make for terrific investment opportunities.

Why? The market sees constant ups and downs. Buying when the market’s high means greater upfront costs. And because the market cannot rise indefinitely, property investors must constantly watch for the bubble to pop.

In a down market, the question is not “if,” but “when” the market will improve. If investors can buy properties at rock-bottom prices, they can afford to maintain the home until the market improves. At that point, the investor can sell the home both to recoup their buying and operating costs and to make a profit.

Some companies are looking to profit on the down housing market. Deer Park Development Corporation, a Nevada-based company, is purchasing foreclosed homes in Arizona, Nevada, California and Florida, some of the areas most affected by the down market. Nevada, for example, sees more foreclosures than any other state -; million-dollar properties can be bought for half their building costs. Between May and June, Californian banks foreclosed on 40 percent of the homes on the market.

Deer Park Development Corporation’s agents and brokers draw on 35 years of experience -; they have seen down markets before, so they can easily identify promising properties.

When Deer Park Development Corporation finds a home that it wants to acquire as an investment, it works with the homeowner or bank to purchase the home at a 50 percent discount.

But the company does not profit at homeowner’s expense. It negotiates with homeowners so that people can rent their homes after the sale. When the original homeowner’s lease expires, Deer Park Development Corporation allows former homeowners to repurchase their properties for a predetermined price. In this way, the company invests in the down market while also helping down-and-out homeowners.

Currently, the company is searching for investors. For more information, visit deerparkdevelopmentcorp.com.