October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, take a stand for safety

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Domestic violence, which is highlighted during the month of October, comes in many forms, some immediately recognizable, others very subtle. But regardless of the form that the abuse takes, it is important that victims take a stand for safety, during Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October and throughout their lives.

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Domestic Violence includes emotional, physical, verbal, financial and sexual abuse. Many people mistakenly believe that unless their loved ones hit them in a way that causes visible injury then the abuse is minor and not worthy of attention. That is a mistake. Small acts of domestic violence often mushroom into significant forms of abuse that typically results in severe injury and often death.

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Still, many domestic violence sufferers do not regard themselves as victims and ever so often they staunchly defend the source of their hurt, pain, abuse and fear. Studies have shown that people are sometimes so attached to the idea of being in a relationship that they ignore all evidence that show that their lives, safety, well-being and that of their children, are in danger as long as they remain in an abusive relationship. But the strength that it takes to leave an abusive relationship is often absent from the psyches of the abused.

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Moreover, when a person tries to leave an abusive relationship that is the time when they are at the greatest risk of harm, studies show. The dance of the abuser and abused is so common that it has its own name: the honeymoon phase–which is the period when the abusive partner apologizes for the violence, shows some form of remorse and showers the victim with presents and a brief change in behavior to put the victim at ease. Once the victim’s guard is down, the abuse returns fiercer than before.

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As October comes to a close, look to the future by taking a powerful stand against domestic violence. Vow to yourself that you will not tolerate abusive conduct that a partner tries to disguise as love. Put your safety and that of your children first, recognize when a partner is trying to isolate you from your friends and loved ones, be fearful if that person keeps tabs on your every activity and excessively monitors all of your interactions that do not include him or her.

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Remember, when a partner demonstrates consistent over the top acts of paranoia, possessiveness, control, monitoring and interference in outside friendships that partner is not displaying love, rather, that person is gradually setting the stage for an explosion of abusive conduct, which is a textbook pattern of domestic violence. If you are in an abusive relationship and need help to leave while preserving your safety and the safety of your children, call the Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE–OnPointPress.net–.

 

Baltimore wedding inspires hope that others will find love too

The happy couple, after exchanging vows, walk down the aisle, basking in the glow of love.

The radiant couple, Mr. and Mrs. Antonio Johnson, walk down the aisle basking in the glow of love, after exchanging wedding vows in a lovely gazebo, a fitting setting for the memorable event.

By Kimberly Brown

I recently attended a wedding in Baltimore, Maryland, and I was overjoyed to witness the union of two beautiful spirits: Ms. Brittany Scott and Mr. Antonio Johnson.The event filled my heart with a range of emotions, inspiring me to share my thoughts about love, not only the type of love that is shared between a husband and wife, but also self-love, and love for mankind.

It truly saddens my heart that we are living in a world where society is increasingly losing souls and lives due to a lack of love. It’s extremely difficult to turn on the television without being overwhelmed with headlines that represent volatile acts, stemming from emotions of hurt, anger and hate. The acts come from negative energy instead of love, an emotion that is not acknowledged as much as it should be.

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Groom Mr. Antonio Johnson, center, poses with his groomsmen (L-R): Mr. Kristina Adams, Mr. Richard Holmes, Mr. Diamond Chism, Mr.Tristan Johnson, Mr. Best Man Mr. Shannon Butler, Mr. Antoine Diggs and Mr. Shawn Johnson.

What if those destructive emotions were outweighed by love? I believe that love can change people’s hearts, minds and behavior. Love is a feeling, not just a thought, and it flows from the heart and shows itself in actions.

Social media plays a huge role in creating a false sense of love and acceptance through “Likes” and the number of followers people have on sites such as Facebook and Instagram. I’ve overheard discussions where individuals have expressed how unimportant they feel, simply because they lack a strong social media following. Prior to the advent of social media, what was the foundation of our self-confidence and self- love?

Grammy-award winning singers including icons Dionne Warwick and Diana Ross is a favorite among confirmed romantics. The lyrics were written by Hal David and the music was composed by Burt Bacharach. It was first recorded by Jackie DeShannon, and released on April 15, 1965, climbing to No.7 on the US Hot 100 charts in July 1965.

Grammy Award-winning singers including icons Dionne Warwick and Diana Ross have sung versions of the ballad “What The World Needs Now, Is Love,” a favorite among confirmed romantics. The lyrics were written by Hal David and the music was composed by Burt Bacharach. It was first recorded by Jackie DeShannon and released on April 15, 1965, climbing to No.7 on the US Hot 100 charts in July 1965.

I was brought up in a household where I was told daily how much I was loved. I was blessed. I was valued. I was cherished. That cocoon of love and validation caused me to blossom into a confident adult, oozing with self-confidence and self-love.

Unfortunately, not everyone had that same experience growing up so as adults some of us tend to seek love and acceptance in the world, which causes us to become susceptible to people who have ulterior motives. Yet, the reality is that the most essential form of love comes from the home. Self-love comes from within and should be encouraged by loved ones. However, we should all take time to love ourselves and not always seek it from others. True love can best be described as a vibrant ripple effect: first loving oneself, then allowing the love we have in our hearts to pour out to others in the world. Here is the video of the wedding.

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Breathtaking bride Brittany Scott (center), poses with her bridesmaids (L-R): Ms. Angela Oauli, Ms. Jade Thomas, Matron of Honor Mrs. Lakeisha Scott-Skrine, sister of the bride; Maid of Honor Ms. Eboni Ross, Ms. Shantear Meredith, and Ms. Monique Madison.

There are millions of youth who flood social media every single day confusing love with followers who are trolling their profiles. But that is not love. Feeling sad because of the perception that you have an inadequate number of social media followers or a low re-post count is alarming. The damage that is caused to the self-esteem of the young, and adults alike, because they value social media numbers instead of quality relationships, is a shocking and potentially harmful trend.

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The world most definitely needs more love, however, self-love is essential for a healthy life. Self-love provides growth in areas of our lives that we rarely think it could affect. We should all give self-love a try in its more authentic form. Love has no color, boundaries or preferences. Love needs to be boldly expressed, carefully nurtured and forever cherished.

The happy couple, Mr. and Mrs. Antonio Johnson, tie the knot in the presence of loved ones.

The happy couple, Mr. and Mrs. Antonio Johnson, tie the knot in the presence of loved ones.

Based on all that I thought that I knew about love, attending the nuptials of Mr. and Mrs. Antonio Johnson allowed me to see that love, when displayed in its purest form as theirs was, is an expression of self-acceptance and appreciation for another person.

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Antonio Johnson on your union. The wedding was a testament to a love that warms the heart, soothes the soul and inspires hope that more people will dedicate their lives to valuing and honoring love–OnPointPress.net–

Kimberly Brown is a journalist, producer, public speaker and media relations executive whose work has appeared in XXL magazine, BET, NBC and National Geographic Channel. Follow her on twitter@kbbrown80.

October is National Women in Small Business Month, ready to dive in?

October is National Women in Small Business Month.

October is National Women in Small Business Month.

By Carmen Glover

The month of October is traditionally filled with events to address domestic violence, breast cancer, mental health and anti-bullying awareness. But did you know that female entrepreneurs are also celebrated in the month of October? Do you feel inspired to become a female business owner or are you already taking steps to launch a business?

Happy Women's Small Business Month

National Women in Small Business Month is one of the most significant features of October because it is dedicated to honoring and highlighting the reality that women-owned small businesses are integral to the success of the economy, which in turn drives a myriad of intertwining industries such as healthcare and income, which are necessary to ensure appropriate care for breast cancer, mental health and the effects of domestic violence.

The Small Business Administration (SBA), in publicizing women in business is hosting a series of weekly web chats dealing with women in business. Figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau statistics, developed every five years, indicate that 7.8 million women-owned firms in 2007 and  90 percent of those are small businesses. Those same figures show that between 1997 to 2007 women-owned companies outpaced the rate of growth of male-owned businesses..

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As the global economy changes, many women have decided to branch out on their own and venture into entrepreneurial waters. For some, it might be a simple dipping of the toes to test the waters before taking the big plunge, while for others it is an all-or-nothing leap with no thought of looking backward. Regardless of where you fall on the spectrum, here are some things to keep in mind: Follow your heart and if that leads to the creation of a business, go for it; Launching and sustaining a profitable business takes hard work and is filled with disappointments mixed with successes and finally, only you can tell if entrepreneurship is right for you, regardless of what your mentors and loved ones might think or say.

Having your own business, if it is successful, comes with the perks of being your own boss, setting your own hours, working in a style that suits you, and following your passion. But those perks must be balanced by a realistic ability to earn, support your family, save for retirement and expand your business so that it is a viable and reliable source of income. For many women, the first step to entrepreneurship is working hard at a hobby that does not generate steady income but provides an outlet to nurture a talent which brings joy and fulfillment. It that’s the most feasible approach for you, start there and add new steps along the journey towards entrepreneurship, based on ;your comfort level and long-term goals.–OnPointPress.net–

 

 

 

 

Flip Saunders, Timberwolves’ coach/president of basketball operations, has died

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By Charles Glover Jr.

Phil ‘Flip’ Saunders, the head coach and president of basketball operations for the Minnesota Timberwolves, has died from cancer at age 60. His death has prompted an outpouring of grief across the NBA, with his two main teams, the Timberwolves and Detroit Pistons, and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver releasing statements, which appear below:

“It is with tremendous difficulty and deep sadness that the Timberwolves acknowledge the passing of our President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach, Flip Saunders. Flip was a symbol of strength, compassion, and dignity for our organization. He was a shining example of what a true leader should be, defined by his integrity and kindness to all he encountered. Today is not a day to reflect on Flip’s accomplishments in basketball or what he brought to us as an organization on the court, but rather to indicate what he meant to us as a co-worker, friend, member of the community and the basketball world at large. We as an organization are devastated by his passing, and our hearts and prayers go out to Debbie and the entire Saunders family as they endure this extraordinary loss,” the Timberwolves’ statement read.

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“It is with tremendous sorrow that the Detroit Pistons organization acknowledges the passing of Flip Saunders. He will be remembered by Pistons fans as one of the franchise’s most successful head coaches – leading the club to three consecutive Eastern Conference Finals appearances and a franchise-record 64 wins in 2005-06. Flip was a great ambassador for the Metro Detroit community and had a positive influence on those who had the opportunity to spend time with him. We send our heartfelt condolences to his wife, Debbie, his children Ryan, Mindy, Rachel, Kimberly and all his friends throughout the extended Detroit Pistons and NBA family,” the Pistons’ statement read.

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“The NBA family is mourning today over the tragic loss of our friend and colleague, Flip Saunders. With more than 40 years around the game, 20 of them in the NBA, Flip’s untimely passing has left a gaping hole in the fabric of our league. Flip was a beloved figure around the NBA, nowhere more so than in Minnesota, demonstrating a genuine and consistent passion for his players, his team and the game. On behalf of the NBA, we offer our most sincere condolences to Flip’s wife, Debbie, their four children and the entire Minnesota Timberwolves organization,” NBA Commissioner Adam Sliver’s statement read.

The entire NBA family and fans mourn the loss of Saunders’ talent and legacy—-OnPointPress.net.—

Jamaica joins the global observation of United Nations Day 2015

October 24 is United Nations Day and the beautiful island of Jamaica joins the global observations of this important day on the calendar.

October 24 is United Nations Day and the beautiful island of Jamaica joins the global observations of this important day on the calendar.

October 24, Kingston, Jamaica: As the United Nations celebrates seventy years of existence, Jamaica is pleased to join the international community in observing United Nations Day 2015.

The UN is a unique multilateral organisation in which all countries, large and small, developed and developing, have a voice and can participate as equals to resolve the enormous challenges of our time. It is indisputable that over the last seven decades, the United Nations has remained an essential forum for the conduct of multilateral affairs. It is the only institution with unquestioned legitimacy to marshal the international community around the promotion of international peace and security, fundamental human rights and freedoms, economic and social development and prosperity.

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Its expansion from 50 members at inception to 193 in 2015 provides ample evidence of not only its relevance, but also the faith and confidence of the international community in its capacity to address the challenges that confront us. Born out of the noble ideal to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, the UN has done remarkably well in preventing a third world war. UN peacekeeping missions across the globe have contributed to making the world a safer and more secure place.

The UN has provided much-needed humanitarian assistance to countries in the aftermath of natural hazards and populations in conflict situations. The work of the UN in combating organized crime, addressing the world drug problem, curbing the illicit traffic in small arms and light weapons and stemming the proliferation of nuclear weapons is worthy of note.

Food from around the world will be a featured part of the UN Day festivities.

Food from around the world will be a featured part of the UN Day festivities.

The UN, through the Human Rights Council and the various treaty bodies, continues to play a pivotal role in ensuring that fundamental rights and freedoms are respected. It is noteworthy that all States have ratified at least one, and eighty percent of States have ratified four or more, of the core human rights treaties, a signal of the universality of respect for human rights. The erection earlier this year of a Permanent Memorial at UN Headquarters, New York, in honour of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade, an initiative pioneered by Jamaica and other members of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) as well as the African Group, serves as testimony to the work of the Organisation in championing human rights.

​​​​​​​​​As a Small Island Developing State (SIDS), Jamaica has special reason to celebrate the United Nations and attaches particular importance to the work of the United Nations in social and economic development. The UN has sought to ensure that the needs of the poor and marginalised are addressed. Its effectiveness in spearheading the paradigm shift towards sustainable development over the last few decades, to ensure that the interests of future generations are safeguarded, is significant.

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From Agenda 21, to the Millennium Development Goals, and now the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the UN has demonstrated its commitment to securing “The Future we want”. By defining an agenda for people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnerships, the international community has sought to ensure that people are placed at the center of the development process, no one is left behind and that our stewardship of the planet is characterized by respect for its resources. These are the ingredients that will make for a world free of extreme poverty, where prosperity can be achieved and sustained.

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In carrying out its mandate, the UN has counted on a cadre of international public servants, whose professionalism and dedication stand out for commendation. Among them are many Jamaican nationals, who have provided distinguished service locally, at the offices of the UN Headquarters and its agencies overseas and as diplomatic representatives of the Government of Jamaica. Under the theme “The UN we serve, serves us”, we use the occasion of this seventieth anniversary to pay special tribute to them and to express our pride in their accomplishments.

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We acknowledge that in some respects, the UN has not met its own lofty expectations. Nevertheless, the 70th anniversary affords us the opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the aims and objectives of the Organisation. The entire sustainable development framework, inclusive of the upcoming 21st Meeting of the Conference of States Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), provides a test of our collective commitment to this end.

It is Jamaica’s hope and expectation that COP21 will agree on an ambitious, legally binding agreement which will ensure the sustainability of planet earth. At this defining moment, now more than ever, the United Nations must reform and re-position itself to respond more effectively to the multidimensional challenges of the 21st century. We must unite in the common purpose to forge global solutions to our common problems. We must commit to making the coming decades ones of extraordinary progress, and the UN an organization which is fit for purpose. Happy United Nations Day!–OnPointPress.net–

College students host branding panel, provide tips for aspiring entrepreneurs

(From Left to Right) Kim Brown – Entertainment Journalist Franklin Oates – Proven Prodigy Productions Omar Crenshaw – CPCC Student Life Coordinator DaVita Galloway – Co-Owner of Dupp&Swatt Devin Johnson – Film Producer (ShotByDJ) Calvin Cleveland – Co-Owner of F.O.S. Lifestyle What is your Brand Panelist

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Kim Brown – Entertainment Journalist
Franklin Oates – Proven Prodigy Productions
Omar Crenshaw – CPCC Student Life Coordinator
DaVita Galloway – Co-Owner of Dupp&Swatt
Devin Johnson – Film Producer (ShotByDJ)
Calvin Cleveland – Co-Owner of F.O.S. Lifestyle
What is your Brand Panelist

On September 30th 2015, some of Charlotte’s youngest, most creative minds came together for a branding panel at Central Piedmont Community College.

The event was called “What Is Your Brand.”The panel was created to give students insight into what it takes to be successful in the business world, specifically for those who are interested in owning their own businesses.

Panelists included influential community members such as Devin Johnson, known as ShotbyDJ, who is a film producer in the area. He has worked with many well-known rap artists in the music industry; entertainment Journalist Kim Brown, who has contributed to publications such as XXL, BET and the Charlotte Fashion Week; and the duo known as Dupp and Swatt, owners of a multipurpose creative space where people are encouraged to create in whatever way suits them.

The panel was exceptional and the students were eager with questions during the event. Students were given the realities of working in entertainment and the sacrifices that have to be made to be successful. Students were also given insight into professional etiquette, and what kinds of things employers seek in their employees. The event ended with students quickly approaching the stage to ask more questions.

There was a focus on mentoring during the event, and many of the students took down the information provided by panelists. Some of the panelists stated that they were more than happy to serve as mentors and it is expected that they are able to connect with the students. This was a successful event and many students are asking for another chance to pick the brains of some of the most influential people in the community–OnPointPress.net.

Jamaica’s Heroes’ Day celebrated with grand Berlin concert

Tenor Soloist, Steve Higgins, delighting the audience with his rendition of popular Jamaican songs. In the photograph are Honorary Consuls for Jamaica, Mr. Mirko Miljus, from Serbia (centre),  Mr. Joern Follmer, from Munich (second right) and Mr. Marian Valko (right) from the Slovak Republic.

Tenor Soloist, Steve Higgins, delighting the audience with his rendition of popular Jamaican songs. In the photograph are Honorary Consuls for Jamaica, Mr. Mirko Miljus, from Serbia (center), Mr. Joern Follmer, from Munich (second right) and Mr. Marian Valko (right) from the Slovak Republic.

The Jamaican Embassy in Berlin celebrated an early National Heroes’ Day on October 8, 2015, capitalizing on the presence in Germany of tenor soloist, Steve Higgins, the main performer at a reception/concert to commemorate the important historical day.

Her Excellency Mrs. Margaret Jobson gave brief remarks to an audience of approximately 150, comprising members of the Diplomatic Corps, Jamaica’s Honorary Consuls in Munich, Serbia and the Slovak Republic, the public and private sectors and the Jamaican community. In her address, she pointed to the significance of National Heroes Day and the contribution of the seven heroes in changing the course of Jamaica’s history.

Members of the Jamaican community in Berlin.

Members of the Jamaican community in Berlin.

On exhibition were mounted photographs of the heroes with brief biographical data on each. Two short videos, From Tainos to Morant and Discovery and National Heroes were shown during the cocktail hour before the concert. As the Jamaica Tourist Board co-sponsored the event, a short tourism promotional video showcasing the varied tourism product that Jamaica has to offer was also presented along with a display of collateral material.

Her Excellency Margaret Jobson (centre), Ambassador of Jamaica to Germany, is pictured here alongside Gregory Shervington (left), Jamaica Tourist Board Regional Director for Continental Europe based in Germany, and Embassy of Jamaica in Berlin staff members, Deniese Sealey, Counsellor and Troy Levy, Attaché, Accounts and Administration during the Heroes’ Day concert/reception held on Thursday, October 8, at the Jamaican Embassy in Berlin.

Her Excellency Margaret Jobson (center), Ambassador of Jamaica to Germany, is pictured here alongside Gregory Shervington (left), Jamaica Tourist Board Regional Director for Continental Europe based in Germany, and Embassy of Jamaica in Berlin staff members, Deniese Sealey, Counsellor and Troy Levy, Attaché, Accounts and Administration during the Heroes’ Day concert/reception held
on Thursday, October 8, at the Jamaican Embassy in Berlin.

The concert opened with drumming by Joseph ‘Blue’ Grant, a Jamaican singer, Songwriter and Producer who resides in Berlin. Mr. Steve Higgins gave a masterful performance, entertaining the gathering with songs of a wide variety of musical genres from traditional folk to classical. Also presenting some traditional dance moves were the Prime Time Dancers, a German dance group which specializes in Jamaican dance forms.

The Western Regional Foundation for Disabled Children/Westhaven Children’s Home was the beneficiary of donations from those attending the event. This charity will also receive the offering collected at the Embassy’s Independence Church service in August–OnPointPress.net–.