Thursday, October 16, 2014

Holidays and Observances for October 16 2014

Conflict Resolution Day


Conflict Resolution Day first ran in 2005 to promote the awareness of conciliation, mediation and other ways we can look at dealing with conflict and achieve more peaceful methods. And to do this the day has to be huge!

It's essential to get governments on board so that they can reach out to schools, communities, families, the legal system - so we can all start working towards making positive changes together.

The picture logo sums up everything the day is about. You can see the roots which show where the tree started growing - at one time it was just a small seed but now it has grown and blossomed into a tree with lots of colorful leaves. The idea is that while the changes will take time the rewards will be worth it!  Just like any changes made this year will develop again and again year on year. 

If you're part of a school, whether elementary, middle-school or high school there are lots of conflict resolution activities for you to do this year as part of Conflict Resolution Day! And seeing as the day is worldwide - the posters are available in English, Arabic, French, Hebrew, Spanish and Japanese!  How's that for preparation?

Are you keen to organized an event in your community?  Try to get local newspapers, radio stations and politicians involved. You could also take a leaf out of ACR's book and hold a contest!  It could be poetry or something else altogether like an essay or art competition with 'conflict resolution' as the theme.

Department Store Day


As the name hints, Department Store Day is an occasion to recognize the retail powerhouses that have brought wealth to numerous nations from around the world. Obviously, this event has rather modern traditions and while these are a bit unclear, its roots seem to trace back at least until the end of the Second World War. While Department Store Day may not be as recognized as some other celebrations, its existence is nonetheless very real.

The main way to celebrate the occasion (from the point of view of a consumer) will be to visit one’s favorite department store, browse the aisles and pick out a gift or two. After all, contributing a bit of money back into the economy never hurts. If one is an employee, it could be worthwhile to ask for an extended lunch break. Still, if management has never heard of Department Store Day, the chances of enjoying a bit of free time may be slightly reduced!

A department store is a retail establishment with a building open to the public, offering a wide range of consumer goods. It typically allows shoppers to choose between multiple merchandise lines, at variable price points, in different product categories known as "departments".

Department stores usually sell a variety of products, including clothing, furniture, home appliances, toys, cosmetics, gardening, toiletries, sporting goods, do it yourself, paint, and hardware and additionally select other lines of products such as food, books, jewelry, electronics, stationery, photographic equipment, baby needs, and pet supplies. Customers check out near the front of the store or alternatively, sales counters within each department. Some are part of a retail chain of many stores, while others may be independent retailers, existing entirely independently or as licensed dealers.

Big-box stores, hypermarkets, and discount stores are modern equivalent of historical department stores.

The origins of the department store lay in the growth of the conspicuous consumer society at the turn of the 19th century. As the Industrial Revolution accelerated economy expansion, the affluent middle-class grew in size and wealth. This urbanized social group, sharing a culture of consumption and changing fashion, was the catalyst for the retail revolution. As rising prosperity and social mobility increased the number of people, especially women (who found they could shop unaccompanied at department stores without damaging their reputation), with disposable income in the late Georgian period, window shopping was transformed into a leisure activity and entrepreneurs, like the potter Josiah Wedgwood, pioneered the use of marketing techniques to influence the prevailing tastes and preferences of society.

One of the first department stores may have been Bennett's in Derby, first established as an ironmongers in 1734. It still stands to this day, trading in the same building. However, the first reliably dated department store to be established, was Harding, Howell & Co, which opened in 1796 on Pall Mall, London. An observer writing in Ackermann's Repository, a British periodical on contemporary taste and fashion, described the enterprise in 1809 as follows:
The house is one hundred and fifty feet in length from front to back, and of proportionate width. It is fitted up with great taste, and is divided by glazed partitions into four departments, for the various branches of the extensive business, which is there carried on. Immediately at the entrance is the first department, which is exclusively appropriated to the sale of furs and fans. The second contains articles of haberdashery of every description, silks, muslin, lace, gloves, & etc. In the third shop, on the right, you meet with a rich assortment of jewelry, ornamental articles in ormolu, french clocks, &etc.; and on the left, with all the different kinds of perfumery necessary for the toilette. The fourth is set apart for millinery and dresses; so that there is no article of female attire or decoration, but what may be here procured in the first style of elegance and fashion. This concern has been conducted for the last twelve years by the present proprietors who have spared neither trouble nor expense to ensure the establishment of a superiority over every other in Europe, and to render it perfectly unique in it's kind.
This venture is described as having all of the basic characteristics of the department store; it was a public retail establishment offering a wide range of consumer goods in different departments. This pioneering shop was closed down in 1820 when the business partnership was dissolved.

Department stores began large scale establishment in the 1840s and 50s, in France, the U.K., and the U.S.

International Credit Union Day


International Credit Union (ICU) Day® has been celebrated on the third Thursday of October since 1948. The day is recognized to reflect upon the credit union movement's history and to promote its achievements. It is a day to honor those who have dedicated their lives to the movement, recognize the hard work of those working in the credit union industry and show members our appreciation.

This year's ICU Day will take place on Oct. 16, 2014. Its theme, "Local Service. Global Good.," emphasizes credit unions' positive impact in their communities and around the world.

"ICU Day was established to acknowledge credit unions' strong base in their communities, both local and global," said Brian Branch, World Council president and CEO. "This year's theme champions the credit union model by shining light on the industry's support of charity causes at the local, national and international levels."

The ultimate goal is to raise awareness about the great work that credit unions are doing around the world and give members the opportunity to get more involved. Credit unions and associations throughout the world celebrate the day with open houses, contests, picnics and parades.

National Boss Day


Boss’s Day, also known as National Boss Day or Bosses Day, is a time for many workers to appreciate their employers. It is annually observed in the United States on October 16, or the nearest working day.

Boss’s Day is dedicated to all employers and provides a prospect of improving the liaison between employers and their staff. Many workers dedicate this day to their supervisors for various reasons, such as supporting staff with their jobs and careers. This observance also gives employees a chance to recognize those in supervisory positions.

Some people give their bosses cards, gift certificates, or flowers on Boss’s Day. This observance is becoming increasingly popular in various workplaces. It has received both praise and controversy.

The concept of National Boss Day began in 1958 when Patricia Bays Haroski, then an employee at State Farm Insurance Company in Deerfield, Illinois, registered the holiday with the United States Chamber of Commerce. She designated October 16 as the special day because it was her father's birthday. Haroski's purpose was to designate a day to show appreciation for her boss and other bosses. She also hoped to improve the relationship between employees and supervisors.

Four years later in 1962, Illinois Governor Otto Kerner backed Haroski's registration and officially proclaimed the day. The event’s popularity is growing outside the United States and is now also observed in countries such as Australia, India, and South Africa.

National Dictionary Day


“Young people invent words all the time,” said John Morse, the president of Merriam-Webster, the publishing company that printed the first American dictionary in 1828.
Tuesday is National Dictionary Day, when America honors the birthday of Noah Webster, the word lover who thought Americans should have their own dictionary. Before Webster, all English-language dictionaries came from England.

The world’s oldest dictionary was inscribed on mud tablets 4,500 year ago in the ancient Akkadian Empire — today’s Iraq and Syria. The first English alphabetical dictionary was written by English schoolteacher Robert Cawdrey in 1604, when Shakespeare was still writing plays. (Before that, dictionaries were organized by topic, which would mean that all types of food would be listed together, for example).

Webster’s first American dictionary had 70,000 words — and their definitions — in it. About 12,000 of those words had never been in any dictionary before, Morse said.

The idea behind Webster’s dictionary, Morse said, “is that English-speaking people decide what English is, not professors or historians.”

“Check out ‘selfie,’ a new word we just added to the online dictionary,” he said. “It means taking a picture of yourself maybe on your cellphone and posting it somewhere. A picture of yourself taken by yourself [is] a ‘selfie.’ ”

Kids are invited to send in new words, Morse said. “All you do is log on to Webster’s open dictionary site and make your own suggestions for new words,” he explained. That Web site is located at www3.merriam-webster. com/opendictionary. Always ask a parent or other responsible adult if it’s okay for you to go online.

“We look at every new word sent to us — and plenty come from kids — and if it pans out, the word goes on our universal page, and eventually if there are enough ‘hits’ on the word, we’ll print it in our paper dictionaries, too,” Morse said. “Some of those words may live forever in the dictionary.”

Deciding what words go in the dictionary is a big job. A 2010 study by Harvard and Google researchers found that today there are more than 1 million English words, with 8,500 new ones added to the dictionary each year.

“I remember falling in love with words at a very, very young age,” Morse said. Both his parents were librarians, “and at the drop of a hat, if I wondered what a word meant, not only did they tell me to look it up in the dictionary, but they showed me how, and brought over three or four big fat dictionaries for me to look at.”

“Now, I just click on a Web search,” he said with a laugh. “Dictionaries are easier today.”

National Feral Cat Day


National Feral Cat Day was created by Alley Cat Allies who are a national advocacy organization dedicated to the humane treatment and the protection of feral cats. They were the first organisation to introduce the Trap-Neuter-Return method to control feral cat colonies in America.

By establishing and promoting standards of care, the organization has promoted the humane treatment of cats into the national spotlight. Their approach is now embraced by major cities and animal protection organizations all over the world. In 20 years the world now has a better understand and respect the lives of these feral cats.

A feral cat is a domesticated cat that has returned to the wild, or the descendants of such an animal. It is distinguished from a stray cat, which is a pet cat that has been lost or abandoned, while feral cats have never been socialized. The offspring of a stray cat can be considered feral if born in the wild. In many parts of the world, feral cats are the offspring of unaltered domestic cats.

The term "feral" is sometimes used to refer to an animal that does not appear friendly when approached by humans, but the term can apply to any domesticated animal without human contact. Hissing and growling are self-defense behaviors, which, over time, may change as the animal (whether "feral" or "stray") begins to trust humans that provide food, water, and care.

Feral cats that are born and living outdoors, without any human contact or care, have been shown to be adoptable and can be tamed by humans, provided they are removed from a wild environment before truly feral behaviors are established. Such behaviors are established while it is still a kitten being raised by its mother.

During the Age of Discovery, ships released rabbits onto islands to provide a future food source for other travelers. They eventually multiplied out of control and cats were introduced to keep their numbers, and that of mice and rats, down. The cats tended to favor local species as they were ecologically naive and easier to hunt. Their numbers, too, increased dramatically and soon they colonized many areas and were seen as pests. Cats were introduced to Tasmania in 1804 and had become feral by the 1840s. Feral cats were reported on mainland Australia around Sydney in 1820. It has been suggested that feral cats could have been introduced accidentally to the north-western coast in the 17th century from the wrecks of Dutch ships; alternatively, they could have arrived earlier, possibly around the fifteenth century, via mariners from Indonesia.

National Liqueur Day


It’s National Liqueur Day! A liqueur is a strong alcoholic beverage that has been sweetened with herbs, fruits, nuts, cream, or spices. Liqueurs are traditionally served as after-dinner drinks or mixed with coffee.

From the rich to the fruity, liqueurs come in a wide range of flavours, textures and qualities, and differ from spirits due to their usually sweet palate and lower alcohol content.

Recipes for liqueurs have been found in Egyptian tombs and ancient Greek scrolls, but it is primarily the monks of Europe, particularly Italian monks during the 13th Century, who developed the liqueur as a way to infuse herbs for medicinal use. One of the most famous liqueurs to be developed by European monks is Green Chartreuse, which was developed by monks from the Carthusian order in the French Alps. It contains over 130 herbs and spices, some of which are rare, and only three monks know the full recipe, and which herbs produce its unique, natural colour.

As the trade routes opened, the variety of spices and other ingredients, such as ginger, orange and chocolate, made their way into liqueurs, and many households had their own distillery and recipes. Some were used for their anesthetic qualities and used by women during childbirth, while others were imbibed as a digestive aid. They also became fashionable. After Catherine De Medici wed Henry II of France, she introduced the culture of liqueur drinking to the French Court.

Today, there are countless liqueurs made all over the world. Fruit liqueurs are very common, and include those based on assorted berries such as sloe berries, strawberries, blackberries, guava berries and Cloudberries. Other popular fruit bases include blackcurrants, melons, mangoes, bananas, coconut, oranges and other citrus fruits, such as cumquats, limes and lemons. The fruits used in liqueurs vary widely depending on the country. For example, Ume Shu, made with the Ume plum, is found in just about every household in Japan, and while commercial versions are available, the most prized are those made at home. Another example is Murtado, a liqueur made from the Ugni molinae berry, which is endemic to Southern Chile.

Other liqueurs are richer and creamier in both flavor and texture. Chocolatiers such as Godiva and Mozart have created their own cream liqueurs that are pure indulgence both by themselves and mixed in a cocktail. Other cream liqueurs include the famous Bailey's Irish Cream and Advocaat, the latter being a creamy liqueur made from eggs, sugar and brandy. Coffee-flavoured liqueurs, such as Kahlua and illy Espresso Liqueur, also mix wonderfully with their chocolaty counterparts, as does the rich flavor of butterscotch schnapps.

Spices make for wonderful companions to liqueurs also. Cinnamon, aniseed, vanilla, cardamom and juniper berries join a long list of spices that have been used both alone and in combination with herbs, fruits and nuts in many well-known liqueurs. Nuts also create liqueurs with surprising depth and versatility, most notably Amaretto, based on almonds, and the hazelnut-infused Frangelico.

Every year there are new and creative liqueurs to try, and, of course, there are those that are so good they have simply stood the test of time. Why not get to know a liqueur you've never tried before, and see what it can do both on its own and mixed with some of your favourite spirits and mixers.

Today, there are countless types and flavors of liqueur. Some of the most famous include Kahl├║a, Bailey’s Irish Cream, Limoncello, Sambuca, and J├Ągermeister. Try one of the more unusual flower liqueurs, nut liqueurs, or herbal liqueurs to celebrate National Liqueur Day!

Spirit Day


Spirit Day began in 2010 as a way to show support for LGBT youth and take a stand against bullying.  Following a string of high-profile suicide deaths of gay teens in 2010, GLAAD worked to involve millions of teachers, workplaces, celebrities, media outlets and students in going purple on social media or wearing purple, a color that symbolizes spirit on the rainbow flag.  Spirit Day now occurs every year on the third Thursday in October, during National Bullying Prevention Month, and has become the most visible day of support for LGBT youth.

This year GLAAD will celebrate Spirit Day on October 16 where we will all stand together; communities, corporations, celebrities, landmarks, faith groups, sports leagues, schools and so much more, to send a message of solitary and acceptance to LGBT youth. 

An amazing teenager wanted to remember those young people who lost their lives to suicide and to take a stand against bullying.

Students, schools, organizations, corporations, media professionals, celebrities, parents and many more. Everyone from Oprah to Cher to Facebook and MTV have gone purple for Spirit Day. Even the White House joined the cause!

It's easy! The first step – pledge to go purple now! The official GLAAD Presents #SpiritDay campaign kicks off in September with new and exciting ways to participate, spread the word and stand up against bullying!

World Anaesthesia Day


World Anaesthesia Day commemorates the first successful demonstration of ether anaesthesia on October 16, 1846. This ranks as one of the most significant events in the history of Medicine and took place at the Massachusetts General Hospital, home of the Harvard School of Medicine. The discovery made it possible for patients to obtain the benefits of surgical treatment without the pain associated with an operation. 

Anesthesia, or anaesthesia is a temporary state consisting of unconsciousness, loss of memory, lack of pain, and muscle relaxation.

Anesthesia is a unique medical intervention which does not itself offer any particular medical benefit and instead enables the performance of other medical interventions. The best anesthetic is therefore one with the lowest risk to the patient that still achieves the end points required to complete the other intervention. There are many different needs and goals of anesthesia. The goals (end points) are traditionally described as unconsciousness andamnesia, analgesia, and muscle relaxation. To reach multiple end points one or more drugs are commonly used (such as general anesthetics, hypnotics, sedatives, paralytics, narcotics, and analgesics), each of which serves a specific purpose in creating a safe anesthetic.

The types of anesthesia are broadly classified into general anesthesia, sedation and regional anesthesia. General anesthesia refers to the suppression of activity in the central nervous system, resulting in unconsciousness and total lack of sensation. Sedation (or dissociative anesthesia) uses agents that inhibit transmission of nerve impulses between higher and lower centers of the brain inhibiting anxiety and the creation of long-term memories. Regional anesthesia renders a larger area of the body insensate by blocking transmission of nerve impulses between a part of the body and the spinal cord. It is divided into peripheral and central blockades. Peripheral blockade inhibits sensory perception within a specific location on the body, such as when a tooth is "numbed" or when a nerve block is given to stop sensation from an entire limb. Central blockades place the local anesthetic around the spinal cord (such as with spinal and epidural anesthesia) removing sensation to any area below the level of the block.

There are both major and minor risks of anesthesia. Examples of major risks include death, heart attack and pulmonary embolism whereas minor risks can include postoperative nausea and vomiting and readmission to hospital. The likelihood of a complication occurring is proportional to the relative risk of a variety of factors related to the patient's health, the complexity of the surgery being performed and the type of anesthetic. Of these factors, the person's health prior to surgery (stratified by the ASA physical status classification system) has the greatest bearing on the probability of a complication occurring. Patients typically wake within minutes of an anesthetic being terminated and regain their senses within hours. One exception is a condition called long-term post-operative cognitive dysfunction, characterized by persistent confusion lasting weeks or months, which is more common in those undergoing cardiac surgery and in the elderly.

The first documented general anesthetic was performed by Crawford W. Long in 1842. Unfortunately for Long, he did not publish his successes with ether for general anesthesia until 1849. The first public demonstration of general anesthesia was in 1846 by a Boston dentist named William T.G. Morton at the Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Morton gave an ether anesthetic for the removal of a neck tumor by surgeon John Collins Warren (the first editor of the New England Journal of Medicine and dean of Harvard Medical School). About a decade later, cocaine was introduced as the first viable local anesthetic. It wasn't until the 1930s that Dr. Harvey Cushing tied the stress response to higher mortality rates and began using local anesthetic for hernia repairs in addition to general anesthesia.

World Food Day


World Food Day is a day of action against hunger. On October 16, people around the world come together to declare their commitment to eradicate hunger in our lifetime. Because when it comes to hunger, the only acceptable number in the world is zero.

World Food Day celebrates the creation of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) on October 16, 1945 in Quebec, Canada. First established in 1979, World Food Day has since then been observed in almost every country by millions of people.

In North America, grassroots events and public awareness campaigns engage diverse audiences in action against hunger.  From hunger walks and World Food Day dinners to meal packaging events and food drives, there are many ways for people to be a part of solutions to hunger. 

Each year, advocates come together to raise awareness and engage Americans and Canadians in the movement to end hunger. Led by the FAO Liaison Office for North America, the World Food Day USA & Canada Network  includes over 60 organizations, universities and companies that are working to achieve a zero hunger world.

Why care about hunger?

Because the right to food is a basic human right.   In a world of plenty, 805 million people, one in nine worldwide, live with chronic hunger. The costs of hunger and malnutrition fall heavily on the most vulnerable.
  • 60% of the hungry in the world are women.
  • Almost 5 million children under the age of 5 die of malnutrition-related causes every year. 
  • 4 in 10 children in poor countries are malnourished damaging their bodies and brains
Every human being has a fundamental right to be free from hunger and the right to adequate food. The right to adequate food is realized when every man, woman and child has the physical and economic access at all times to adequate food or means for its procurement.

Because we can end hunger in our lifetime. It’s possible. The world produces enough food to feed every person on the planet. In September 2000, world leaders signed a commitment to achieve eight Millennium Development Goals by 2015. MDG #1 is eradicate extreme poverty and hunger and includes three targets.  Since then:
  • Forty countries have already achieved the first target, to halve the proportion of people who suffer from hunger by 2015.
  • In addition, over the past 20 years, the likelihood of a child dying before age five has been nearly cut in half, which means about 17,000 children are saved every day.  
  • Extreme poverty rates have also been cut in half since 1990. 
The challenge is significant, but these results show us that when we focus our attention, we can make big strides. 

Because the cost of neglect is too high. No one in the world should have to experience hunger. In addition to the cost of human suffering, the world as a whole loses when people do not have enough to eat. Hungry people have learning difficulties, are less productive at work, are sick more often and live shorter lives. The cost to the global economy because of malnutrition is the equivalent of US$3.5 trillion a year.  Hunger leads to increased levels of global insecurity and environmental degradation. Ending hunger is not just a moral imperative, but also a good investment for society.

Because it can happen to anyone. Even in the U.S., one of the richest countries in the world, one in seven Americans - 14.3 percent - does not have enough to eat. Nutritious food can be expensive, making a balanced diet a luxury for many. Loss of a job, a family tragedy, poor health, or an accident can make anyone, anywhere, go hungry in a moment. Globally, extreme climate events, war, or even financial crisis can dramatically affect a person’s ability to feed themselves and their families. Without social safety nets, resiliency measures and good policy in place, these small and large events can set off a cycle of hunger and poverty.