A quick update: We just announced the second call for late-breaking work and position papers at #Microposts2016 (Making Sense of Microposts) at the World Wide Web conference on 11 April 2016, Toronto, Canada. Beside the Main track and SocSci track, this workshop is a lot about promoting inter-field/domain discussion. We’d love to see Semantic Web and Computational Social researchers out with late-breaking work or work-in-progress. Submission deadline is 18 March 2016. More details here.
Few days ago it was my birthday and somehow I felt inspired to give back and donate to those charities that personally resonate with me or someone that has an important role in my life. This year, these are the organisations I contributed 15 % of my income and I encourage you to do the same if you want and if you can.
Red Cross of Serbia. I contributed to the program for children help and the program of social inclusion. It is obvious and especially in Serbian society children with special needs or without the home and family need your support. You may not be able to give blood, for example, however, you can entail volunteering time with a charity or donate. Here you can make a donation (see instructions for dinars, EUR, and USD).
Wikimedia Foundation. Investing in knowledge is the best thing you can do for yourself and others. Wikimedia Foundation is behind Wikipedia – the first online, collaborative, transparent, user-generated, information and knowledge oriented project on the Internet, important for the future of education and that helps (whether you are aware of it or not) to developing your digital literacy skills on the web. See the donation page.
International Child Art Foundation (ICAF). You probably noticed my previous post on ICAF, and soon to be published an article on music and children development. ICAF serves children worldwide, an organisation that employs the arts to build bonds of understanding and creativity and empathy among children around the world. Check out the ways you can support ICAF – here.
Alzheimer Europe. This NGO aims at raising awareness of all forms of dementia by creating a common European platform through co-ordination and co-operation between Alzheimer organisations throughout Europe. This is important to me because in my country awareness about dementia is non-existent and this is the area that needs research and development. I believe that you know someone who is diagnosed with dementia, however, this is also the social stigma in many societies. You can help Alzheimer Europe by purchasing some of their publications – here.
My first real experience of intense grief of losing someone you love in the family happened in 2003 when my Nana, maternal grandmother died from cancer. She was a primary school teacher in pension, she was the one who taught me to read and write. She was very warm, caring, beautiful and joyous woman. Back then, in Serbia, the awareness about cervical cancer literally didn’t exist. We didn’t even know that she was suffering from cervical cancer until it was too late. If my Nana had gone for a cervical smear earlier, she may still be here.
European Cervical Cancer Association (ECCA) says that we could prevent almost every case of cervical cancer, and organised cervical cancer screening programmes can prevent up to 80% of cervical cancers. What we can do is to raise awareness about programmes on:
- Cervical screening. Have a regular cervical screening, it offers protection against developing cervical cancer. Have your smear tests. After the age of 30, you should go to your ob/gyn twice per year for smear tests.
- HPV vaccination programmes. HPV is a very common virus. Up to 80% of people will be infected with an HPV infection at some time during their lives. Also, have in mind that HPV vaccines are not a substitute for cervical screening.
In Serbia, cervical cancer is the second leading cause of death of women. Even where screening at local health offices and programmes are available, many women have not been made aware of their importance so they do not use them. The message is simple: have your smear tests, have the vaccine, spread the word and remind your female friends and women that are important in your life. We should get rid of the stigma and talk about this before it’s too late. For more information about The Cervical Cancer Prevention Week, check the materials in different languages.
Image source: http://www.ecca.info/
My personal choices and professional interests are always focused on serving and helping others, especially vulnerable groups in our society. Now, I am happy to share with you the information about a Winter camp in Uganda being organised by the International Child Art Foundation (ICAF), which is called “Christmas with Orphans”.
Following the 5th World Children’s Festival, which occurred earlier this summer at The Ellipse next to The White House in Washington D.C. and building on the success of the ICAF Summer Camp in Washington DC, the ICAF “Christmas with Orphans” Camp will take place in Uganda and will run from December 20th through Dec 30th and is being presented in collaboration with the Uganda National Museum and the Ministry of Education.
The camp provides a global educational opportunity for high school juniors, enabling them to gain an incredible, hands-on international service experience which will enhance their prospects of gaining admission to top universities and help them decide on the right career.
Register today, because no more than 20 campers will be admitted. Please share this information as well, as other parents you know may be interested.