Archive for July, 2006

Will Basra Be Forgotten?

31 July, 2006

The Sun newspaper has linked up with The Red Cross in an appeal for the children of Lebanon. The front pages of many newspapers feature photos of dead children. 37 have been killed in Israeli attacks most recently. 

Clearly the Israel-Hezbollah conflict is going to be the latest humanitarian story to dominate the headlines for some weeks to come. 

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Suicide in Basra

30 July, 2006

There is a story in The Independent today about a military investigation officer who committed suicide in Basra.

If someone with his kind of experience finds it tough going, what must it be like for ordinary people living there?

28 July 2006

28 July, 2006

Have been contacted by a girl who might be interested in getting involved, and sent an update to another guy who had expressed an interest. 

Still hoping to find a blog designer – have put a few more details on the Creative Ireland website. 

Spoke to someone in the course of my other business who is now retired, aged 65. He recently sold a successful car dealership, and tells me that he now has a lot of time on his hands.  I wonder if he might be interested in getting involved somehow.

27 July 2006

27 July, 2006

I have a quick scan of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland – I will need to try and meet some of the people there to discuss my project, to see if they can offer any advice or assistance. It would be interesting to find out if they have a mentoring scheme and whether I could apply for any funding – anything to help with the overheads would be helpful. 

The phone line for the office has been booked with Pure Telecom, so we have to wait 10 days now, and perhaps another ten days to get the broadband connected. There is no difference in the line rental rates, thanks to Eircom’s monolpoly ownership of the physical telecoms infrastructure. 

Contrast this with being able to buy a mobile phone and make calls within minutes of handing over the cash for it. If Dublin had its own city-wide wi-fi network, that worked in buildings everywhere as well as the outdoors, we would be able to use that, and save a few quid as well. 

Meanwhile, all I can do is mull over the ideas I have in mind and wait patiently. Perhaps by the time we can move in, I will have found someone to design the blog.

20 July 2006

20 July, 2006

There will now be three of us sharing the office, which is good news. 

The afternoon finds me attending a hospital appointment – for a check-up and a blood test – at Temple Street Children’s hospital in Dublin. 

There is building work going on, and there are a few new wings since I was last there. There is an LCD television in the blood test waiting room and a ride-on tractor and car in the metabolic unit waiting room. There is even a machine to test my blood pressure, to save staff having to squeeze a little air pump, like they used to do. 

The dieticians have almost become salespeople – telling me about new foods and drinks that are now available on prescription. There are even low protein ready meals available now, which understandably, I would have to pay for. 

Looking at the hospital’s website, however, even they have to raise funds for various machines and equipment they require. This is something of a surprise to me, given that this is a major children’s hospital in one of the richest countries in the world. 

I can only imagine the conditions that a hospital in Basra has to cope with in comparison. How would the staff and patients of Temple Street cope in their situation?   

I also wonder if they would in some way be prepared to help a far-away hospital with which they have something in common – if only the basic fact that both are children’s hospitals?