Is this the UK’s first property sale via Instagram?

first_imgHome » News » Land & New Homes » Is this the UK’s first property sale via Instagram? previous nextLand & New HomesIs this the UK’s first property sale via Instagram?£320,000 one-bedroom apartment in London believed to be country’s first directly-sourced sale via the social media platform.Nigel Lewis24th January 201903,460 Views A developer in London has revealed what is believed to be one of the first property sales in the UK to be directly traced back to a lead generated via social media picture sharing platform Instagram.Apt Living, which has sites under development in Brentwood and Kew Bridge in London, says it has received a reservation for an apartment sourced via its @apt_living Instagram account.The one-bedroom apartment was bought by a first time buyer at its Kew Bridge site.Hadden White (left), who works in London’s bespoke suit industry, saw the apartment on the company’s Instagram feed last year and then visited the site on its launch day last Saturday and reserved it the day after. He expects to complete and move in this October.“A high proportion of our buyers are social media savvy first-time buyers,” says Apt Living’s sales and marketing director Cameron Smith (right, below).“Research has shown that on average people spend about half an hour on Instagram each day with the younger the user the more time spent on the app. Property is a visual medium so it stands to reason that Instagram is the ideal platform to showcase it.“To resonate with our prime audience we have a number of social media accounts which we use as an extension of our branding. These are updated regularly and are also used to market our homes through organic and promoted content.”Properties at Apt’s Kew Bridge development start at £320,000 for a one-bedroom unit and are also being marketed by more conventional means via joint agents Marsh & Parsons and Savills. January 24, 2019Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021last_img read more

Right Now is the Best Time to Buy Real Estate in Ocean City, NJ

first_imgWhen it comes to the real estate market in Ocean City, it’s no secret that the competition for buying and selling becomes heavy during the peak summer season! Open houses are flooded with potential buyers and the market finds new listings daily.But does all the potential for buying and selling a beach home in the summer really prove more beneficial? In fact, many realtors disagree. Local Berkshire Hathaway Fox & Roach agent, Peter Madden, suggests that the summer season is a great time to do your research and browse over the options for buying or even seeing what buyers like best in a home. However, “it turns out that the best time to buy is actually in the winter,” Madden states.According to Peter, “interest rates are at a historical low right now, making buying a home cheaper than ever,” Therefore, if someone were to buy a home right now as opposed to buying this upcoming summer, it would definitely be cheaper than what that same house would go for in just a few months.One of those listings that could be plenty cheaper is this beautiful home located at 2625 Wesley Avenue overlooking the beach in a perfect summer location! With oceanfront views in almost every room, this luxury beach house can be a vacation or residence fit for royalty for $4.39 million.Another home that is listed at an amazing price is this beautiful, modern first floor. With four bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, hardwood floors and stainless steel appliances, this home offers everything you could possibly need for the perfect stay! At the price of just $445,000, this beautiful space could be yours!For those looking to enjoy their home this upcoming summer season, the historically low interest rates are a whole new reason to buy now. “Since settlement can take up to 45-60 days, buying a house now would have you in that house by March at the latest, giving you, the new owner, time to fix it up as you please for your enjoyment this summer or for your possible rentals if you’re looking to make money off of the home,” says Peter. This is one factor that buyers often overlook when searching for a home during the summer season.Lastly, Peter informs us that Ocean City’s off-season means that the island is empty of the many vacationers that populate it in the summer. “It’s incredibly easy to call up your agent and look at homes during the winter since agents and owners can be more readily available to show homes during this time,” he says . During the summer, it can be difficult to book showings with an agent who is busy with rentals and other potential buyers.So get your head start now and start looking to buy with Peter Madden before the summer season hits! As much as it feels like this winter will never end, our sun-soaked beach days will be here before we know it!For more information, visit www.PeteMadden.comlast_img read more

News story: Health Secretary tasks NHS with keeping A&E at Princess Royal open as an A&E Local

first_imgThe Independent Reconfiguration Panel visited the trust to hear directly from clinicians at both sites, who reported that the local area needed a new model of hospital care to provide their patients with consistently safe, high-quality emergency care and treatment 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.The independent panel recommended the emergency care centre for the region will remain at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.The Health and Social Care Secretary recognises that patients in Telford must continue to have access to emergency healthcare services and has therefore written to NHS England tasking them with keeping open the A&E at the Princess Royal Hospital in Telford as an ‘A&E Local’.Plans for A&E Locals are being developed by NHS England and Improvement, and the Department of Health and Social Care is in close contact with the NHS on these developments.Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: I want all patients to receive excellent healthcare throughout their life, no matter where they live. Any changes to services are rightly based on clinically led decisions at a local level. I am delighted we are investing £312 million for acute services in the local area. Having listened to and accepted the advice of independent clinical experts, I have asked NHS England to come forward with proposals within a month on how they will keep the A&E in Telford open as an A&E Local so that the Princess Royal Hospital can continue to deliver the urgent and emergency care the residents in the growing town of Telford need.last_img read more

Shape-shifting sheets automatically fold into multiple shapes

“More than meets the eye” may soon become more than just for the Transformer line of popular robotic toys.Researchers at Harvard and MIT have reshaped the landscape of programmable matter by devising self-folding sheets that rely on the ancient art of origami.Click here to watch a video of the folding process.Using the process called programmable matter by folding, the team demonstrated how a single thin sheet composed of interconnected triangular sections could transform itself into a boat or plane-shape – all without the help of skilled fingers.The researchers, whose findings are published in this week’s online Early Edition of the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), envision creating “smart” cups that could adjust based upon the amount of liquid needed or even a “Swiss army knife” that could form into tools ranging from wrenches to tripods.Lead authors on the study are Robert J. Wood, associate professor of electrical engineering at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and a core faculty member of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, and Daniela Rus, a professor in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science department at MIT and co-director of the CSAIL Center for Robotics.“The process begins when we first create an algorithm for folding,” explains Wood. “Similar to a set of instructions in an origami book, we determine, based upon the desired end shapes, where to crease the sheet.”The sheet, a thin composite of rigid tiles and elastomer joints, is studded with thin foil actuators (motorized switches) and flexible electronics. The demonstration material contains twenty-five total actuators, divided into five groupings. A shape is produced by triggering the proper actuator groups in sequence.To initiate the on-demand folding, the team devised a series of stickers, thin materials that contain the circuitry able to prompt the actuators to make the folds. This can be done without a user having to access a computer, reducing “programming” to merely placing the stickers in the appropriate places. When the sheet receives the proper jolt of current, it begins to fold, staying in place thanks to magnetic closures.“Smart sheets are Origami Robots that will make any shape on demand for their user,” says Rus. “A big achievement was discovering the theoretical foundations and universality of folding and fold planning, which provide the brain and the decision making system for the smart sheet.”The fancy folding techniques were inspired in part by the work of co-author Erik Dermaine, an associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science at MIT and one of the world’s most recognized experts on computational origami.While the Harvard and MIT engineers only demonstrated two simple shapes, the proof of concept holds promise. The long-term aim is to make programmable matter more robust and practical, leading to materials that can perform multiple tasks, such as an entire dining utensil set derived from one piece of foldable material.“The Shape-Shifting Sheets demonstrate an end-to-end process that is a first step towards making everyday objects whose mechanical properties can be programmed,” concludes Wood.Wood and Rus’s co-authors included Elliot Hawkes and Hiroto Tanaka, both at Harvard, and Byoung Kwon An, Nadia Benbernou, Sangbae Kim, and Erik Dermaine, all at MIT.The authors acknowledge funding from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). read more

Embracing varieties of religious experience

first_imgIn 1816, when Harvard Divinity School (HDS) was established, its founders aimed to ensure that “every encouragement be given to the serious, impartial, and unbiased investigation of Christian truth.”Two hundred years later, HDS has expanded its mission. With more than 30 traditions represented, from Islam to Buddhism to the non-affiliated, the School has become a veritable mosaic of religions that go beyond Christianity.To track the evolution of the School over the past two centuries, the Gazette interviewed Dean David N. Hempton, the Alonzo L. McDonald Family Professor of Evangelical Theological Studies and John Lord O’Brian Professor of Divinity. A Belfast-born social historian of religion, Hempton also talked about the School’s first and recent graduates, changes in the world’s religious landscape, and the role of religious literacy in building peace. GAZETTE: Who were the School’s first graduates?HEMPTON: Most of the graduates from those early years were preachers and religious leaders, but many became teachers, college presidents, editors, writers, politicians, and diplomats. Many of them were involved in philanthropic endeavors, poverty relief, asylum reform, and they also took part in the abolition movement. An interesting fact is that many of our graduates from that period achieved significant distinction and they were included in the Dictionary of American Biography. GAZETTE: How do those early graduates compare to the past few years’ graduates?HEMPTON: Quite like the early classes, our recent graduates have mostly become educational, religious, and professional leaders while some have become writers, editors, and artists. They go to graduate school, run NGOs, and get involved in philanthropic causes throughout the world. As a historian, I find it interesting that while things have changed dramatically over time, there are some threads that continue. We’re still a progressive institution that is socially engaged and concerned with questions of meaning and purpose. We’re still a nondenominational divinity school, and we still have one of the country’s strongest ministry education programs, but we are also one of the top feeder schools for doctoral programs in religion and we prepare religiously literate professionals for all kinds of leadership roles.GAZETTE: What about the School as an institution? How has it evolved over 200 years?HEMPTON: What’s remarkable about those early days is how small the Divinity School was. In the 1820s and ’30s class size rarely exceeded 20 students, and now we graduate over 100 every year. It was a small place, and of course it was male, white, and it was more of a liberal Protestant tradition. And now it’s a school of 400 students, and half of them are women, and a substantial proportion of them are from racial and ethnic minorities. A strong number of students are international, and over 30 religious traditions are represented in the School. So the School is bigger, more diverse, more representative of the broader population, and has become multireligious.GAZETTE: What’s the role of a Divinity School in today’s world? Why is it important to study religion?HEMPTON: There is a historical argument to be made. It’s impossible to understand past civilizations without understanding religion. Religion is a major part of the history of civilization, but it’s also the lived experience, the faith and practice, of the great majority of the world’s populations. Why wouldn’t that be important? Also, we’re entering a complicated world order, which is going to be increasingly pluralistic religiously as part of the globalization process and population migrations. We’re trying to educate people to be religiously literate in the best sense of the word, because we’re going to need people who understand how to deal with that greater pluralism, leaders who understand more than one religious tradition, not merely in an algebraic way, in the sense of symbols and equations, but with a deep empathy and understanding of what those traditions are and why they’re lived, dynamic, and life-shaping.GAZETTE: Some people still think that there will be a clash of civilizations between Islam and Christianity. What is your take on this?HEMPTON: Growing up in Northern Ireland, I came to see how dangerous it could be to construct “essentialized” stereotypes of “the other,” and how some can flatten out the other’s beliefs and practices to fit into their preconceived ideas of what the other’s are. At our school, we want to bring to the attention of our students that it’s very dangerous to see religions with a preassigned set of fixed categories, and that’s also true in the United States, where there are unacceptable levels of Islamophobia. The best antidote to stereotypes based on ignorance is education and building relationships, and bringing people together. All religious traditions are sources for the noble things we see in life — meaning, love, compassion, forgiveness, generosity, and hospitality. At the School, as part of our Religions and the Practice of Peace Initiative, we want to explore different religious traditions and what their contributions might be to peace-building.GAZETTE: The world is increasingly becoming more secular. What does that say about religion’s role in the 21st century?HEMPTON: Religion is still a primary organizing principle in people’s lives, and especially outside the more secular regions of the world. It’s a big part of the world’s order not only in terms of identity, but also how religion intersects with other frameworks, such as politics, economics, international relations, etc. A 2012 survey by the Pew Research Center on the global religious landscape found that 84 percent of the world’s population identify with a religious group. It’s true that the religiously unaffiliated, the so-called “nones,” are growing. It’s the fastest-growing category in the United States now, but Christianity and Islam are also growing. Experts predict that by 2050, about 66 percent of the country will be Christian of some kind, another 25 percent will be unaffiliated, and the rest will be made up of Muslims, Buddhists, and other religious traditions.GAZETTE: You’re a historian. What sparked your interest in religion?HEMPTON: I grew up in Belfast, went to the university there in the 1970s when the “Troubles” broke out. I was raised in a churchgoing family; my mother was a devoted churchgoer and expected the same from her children. So I saw how religion could be a source of both good and bad. In my own family, religion seemed to be a force of goodness, decency, compassion, and responsibility. But living in Northern Ireland, I also saw how religion could be a source of conflict, division, and violence, and how it intersected with other categories like national identity, political views, economic access to resources, equality before the law, and job discrimination. Religious labels meant something, whether people were actually churchgoers or not. I look at religion and I see how its various expressions can be divisive, but I also see it as a source of tremendous spiritual resources, values and meaning, neighborliness, and human compassion.GAZETTE: In 100 more years, what do you think the role of religion will be in people’s lives?HEMPTON: Historians are not prophets, but the best answer I can come up with for that is that religion will continue to be a primary organizing principle in people’s lives. The Pew Center projection states that by 2050, two-thirds of Americans will self-identify as Christians, and Islam will be the second-largest religion in the United States. Europe is projected to be 10 percent Muslim, and four out of 10 Christians worldwide will be Africans. As for the School, we like to think of ourselves as illuminating, serving, and engaging, and we need to think about what communities we’re going to serve in 100 years because religion is changing under our very eyes. We have to think about why so many mainline Protestant churches and seminaries are closing. How is Catholicism changing because of the influx of Hispanics and Latinos? How is Islam going to grow? And in what way will the United States become a society with more religious pluralism and greater numbers of people unaffiliated with any religious tradition, but still interested in spirituality? At this 200th-birthday moment, we look at where we’ve come from, and we look at where we’re going. We’re more diverse, multireligious, but we’re also interested in ministry formation, and in religion as a serious scholarly pursuit as well as a lived practice. No one sitting where I’m sitting now in 1816 or 1916 expected the Divinity School to look like the way it is now. Many of the changes the School has gone through have been driven by students, and this will continue. Some dean in 2116 is going to look back on the previous century and think, “If only they knew!”Interview was edited for clarity and length.last_img read more



Police Search For Abducted Pennsylvania Teen

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) JAMESTOWN – The Pennsylvania State Police issued an amber alert Tuesday morning in search of an abducted 15-year-old.Police say Damion Mickey is a white male, 5’5″ tall, 120lbs, with blue eyes, blonde hair, wearing an orange t-shirt, and red sweatshirt.Police say he was last seen on Tuesday between the hours of 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. in the area of Fairview Avenue in Connellsville City, Pennsylvania.The teen was allegedly abducted by 32-year-old Kieth Bradshaw. Bradshaw’s clothing description is unknown, although police say he is a white male, 5’4″ tall, 160lbs, with brown hair and brown eyes.The two are believed to be traveling in a white in color 2018 Chevrolet Malibu four door sedan bearing Pennsylvania registration KYB1942.Anyone with information about the abduction should immediately contact the police by calling 911.last_img read more

One Child Dead and Four Wounded in Motorcycle-Bomb Attack in Colombia

first_imgBy Dialogo July 12, 2012 A seven-year-old boy died and four other children were wounded in the explosion of a motorcycle bomb in a remote rural locality of the department of Cauca, in southwestern Colombia, local authorities announced. The incident took place in El Plateado, a town in the municipality of Argelia (Cauca), departmental Governor Temístocles Ortega announced to the press, specifying that the motorcycle bomb exploded on a soccer field where a number of children were present. Of the four children wounded, a girl is in serious condition, the governor noted, explaining that the explosion occurred shortly after a helicopter made an emergency landing on the soccer field. “Around five in the afternoon (10 p.m. GMT), a motorcycle bomb went off next to the helicopter, causing the death of a boy who was playing in the area and wounding four other children,” the governor said. For his part, Colonel Ricardo Alarcón, the commander of the Cauca police, confirmed the incident to AFP by phone, but declined to name a suspect. “We still don’t know (who was responsible), but Front 60 of the FARC (the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, a communist guerrilla group) is in that area,” he said, after noting that the Army has already been dispatched to the area. The explosion of the motorcycle bomb occurred amid persistent FARC harassment of the town of Toribío, also in Cauca, over the last three days, leading President Juan Manuel Santos to announce that he will preside over a security council in that town on Wednesday. The harassment forced dozens of inhabitants of Toribío to abandon the urban area of the locality and hide in the countryside. The attacks with cylinders of gas loaded with explosives – like homemade mortars – and rifle fire have left several people wounded in the town and a number of residences destroyed or partially destroyed. The FARC is Colombia’s leading guerrilla group, with 48 years of bloody armed struggle against the state, and currently has around 9,200 fighters, according to the Defense Ministry.last_img read more

The Armed Forces Return to Operations in Rio de Janeiro

first_imgBy Nelza Oliveira/Diálogo September 01, 2017 The Armed Forces are back on the streets of Rio de Janeiro for Operation “Rio Quer Segurança e Paz (Rio wants Security and Peace).” Since the United Nations Conference on the Environment & Development, or Rio 92, the Armed Forces have undertaken overt police missions in Rio de Janeiro to ensure security at major events on at least six occasions (Rio + 20 in 2012, World Youth Day in 2013, the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup, the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the 2015 World Military Games, and the 2016 Olympic Games). At other times, the Armed Forces have been called in to pacify slum communities, such as Alemão complex in 2010, and Maré complex in 2014. In these cases, the Armed Forces operate within the legal limits of Law and Order Assurance (GLO, per its Portuguese acronym) operations under presidential decrees, when the resources of traditional law enforcement agencies are stretched to the limit or in severe situations of public disorder. GLO provides military forces with temporary authorization to operate with police powers for a limited time. Although these operations are generally successful, the reality is that once the Armed Forces leave the area of operations, the initial problems quickly return. Accordingly, the federal government has promised that this time, the operations will be different. The Armed Forces will provide support to state and federal security forces in order to defeat criminal organizations. Intelligence, integration, and surprise For this purpose, the Armed Forces have formed a joint staff at the Eastern Military Command Headquarters, in Rio de Janeiro, to plan integrated operations to be undertaken by the three branches. An intelligence unit has been formed in the state, in which general officers from the Army, Navy, and Air Force work together with the Brazilian Intelligence Agency, the Federal Police, and other state and municipal law enforcement agencies. Under the current decree, the operation will last until December 31st, but the federal government has emphasized that this deadline was a bureaucratic requirement and that it will be extended until the end of 2018. “On other occasions in which the Armed Forces have been sent to Rio de Janeiro, the purpose was to provide the population with the necessary security so that a special event could take place. Thus, the Armed Forces implemented patrols for a certain time, providing the population with a sensation of security. This is a fleeting sensation of security, which does not solve the ongoing public security issue in Rio de Janeiro,” admitted Brazilian Army Colonel Roberto Itamar, the spokesperson for the Eastern Military Command and the Joint Staff of the Armed Forces. “The purpose of the National Public Security Plan for Rio de Janeiro is precisely to fight organized crime by reducing the crime rate and weakening and disarming criminal organizations, in order to provide the population with a permanent sensation of security,” he added According to Col. Itamar, GLO will undertake occasional operations with specific objectives. These operations will be based on intelligence work, integration of the security forces, and the element of surprise. “This is the first time that the Armed Forces have been deployed in this manner. It is important for the population to understand that it will not be seeing military personnel in the streets giving them a temporary sensation of security. The state forces have not been exhausted. Rather, these forces are being used. Law enforcement operations are occurring normally. Some will be supported by the Armed Forces, others will not,” he explained. The number of men involved depends on the mission The first operation under the new GLO took place on July 28th with the mobilization of more than 10,000 federal forces, including 8,500 from the Armed Forces, 620 from the National Public Security Force, comprising federal police officers and police officers from the state law enforcement agencies, as well as 1,120 from the Federal Highway Police. Reconnaissance and acclimatization operations were conducted. Troops were also deployed at different locations around the city and they patrolled several areas. The force is not a fixed one, according to Col. Itamar, and will depend on the operation. “Those were the numbers for this first operation; future operations may be smaller or larger depending on the demands of the mission stipulated for the particular operation,” he said. The second operation, called Onerat, held on August 5th, involved almost 5,000 men from the security forces, including 3,600 Armed Forces personnel. It was conducted in the Lins Complex, comprising 12 slum communities on the north side of Rio de Janeiro. The operation resulted in 15 arrests and the seizure of three pistols, two grenades, four radios, 16 vehicles, one motorcycle, four kilograms of cocaine, and 13 kilograms of marijuana. “The trinomial of intelligence, integration, and surprise elements will remain intact. We want to refine and improve each of these components to obtain bigger and better results. In terms of integration and coordination, both operations were successful,” stated Minister of Defense Raul Jungmann, after an August 8th meeting with 10 federal lower house representatives from the state of Rio de Janeiro to discuss law enforcement initiatives under Operation “Rio Quer Segurança e Paz).” “I want to make it clear to criminals and outlaws that there is no sanctuary, that there will be no space or place where we cannot undertake an operation or several operations, based on our intelligence,” added Jungmann. The population of Rio de Janeiro seems to approve the deployment of military personnel throughout the state. One survey conducted by the Brazilian Institute of Opinion and Statistics, and ordered by the Special Secretariat for Social Communication of the president’s office, revealed that 90 percent of the population recognized the importance of the Armed Forces in reducing violence, and that 60 percent had already noticed improvement with the presence of federal troops. The survey was conducted by telephone between August 4th and 7th, while the first two operations were still ongoing. The security forces conducted a third operation, called Dose Dupla, on August 16th. This time it was conducted in Niterói, in the metropolitan area of Rio de Janeiro. The Armed Forces were responsible for cordoning off several slum communities. The operation involved 2,605 military personnel, including 1,588 from the Army, 817 from the Navy, 200 from the Air Force, 300 from the Civil Police, and 250 from the Military Police. Operation Dose Dupla was launched after six months of investigations and more than 10,000 hours of telephone intercepts, and resulted in the arrest of 16 adults and two teenagers, as well as eight rifle magazines, two sets of body armor, three radio transmitters, one kilogram of marijuana, 100 tubes of cocaine, and bookkeeping material.last_img read more

El Salvador Promotes Interoperability between Firefighters and Service Members

first_imgBy Lorena Baires/Diálogo August 30, 2018 The Salvadoran Fire Department (CBES, in Spanish) and the Salvadoran Armed Force (FAES, in Spanish) strengthened joint emergency responses, thanks to the New Hampshire Army National Guard (NHANG). Salvadoran firefighters and service members trained in rescue techniques for sudden floods, landslides, and earthquakes, June 5-7, 2018. “During the exercises, we practiced different rope methods, as well as throw, anchor, and knot techniques. We also shared knowledge on planning a rescue operation,” said U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Greg Heilshorn, spokesperson for NHANG. “The course shows how civil and military authorities can work together in an emergency situation.” The exchange raised an important challenge for both Salvadoran institutions: improving reaction time and increasing interoperability. The training took place in the municipality of San Pablo Tacachico, in the fast, muddy waters of the Suquiapa River, north of La Libertad department. “The training started with basic knots used to tie and anchor ropes safely during rescue operations in dangerous areas, something that was new to them,” said U.S. Army First Lieutenant Katrina Simpson, NHANG assistant instructor at the event. “We showed them techniques such as the bowline, the square, the butterfly, the double figure eight, and the clove hitch.” Cooperation among representatives of CBES and FAES strengthened as the training moved along, which showed during the exercises. “It’s rare for the military and firefighters to train together. It was an added bonus.” said U.S. Army Major Brian Fernandes, NHANG commander of the training team. “We’re here to exchange ideas that can hopefully save lives.” The big test In the last round of exercises, participants carried out simulated rescues in the Suquiapa River. The seasonal rains increased the difficulty of the re-created hazardous situation. Service members and firefighters formed two teams and took turns rescuing and being rescued. Members of one team entered the river and let the current carry them downstream. Quickly and accurately, the other group tied and threw ropes from the steep banks. They repeated the exercise several times to improve reaction times. “The exercise was useful to correct some errors, exchange suggestions, and put them into practice. It helped strengthen our bonds of cooperation with the firefighters; we learned a lot from them,” said Second Lieutenant Johny Sibrián, commander of Search and Rescue of the Salvadoran Army’s Humanitarian Rescue Unit. “We will work together to achieve the same level of training and knowledge in emergency relief, so that support to civilians can be more effective.” “When a natural disaster occurs, such as those caused by torrential rain, we have to use the same techniques and operation protocols,” said CBES Sergeant Wilfredo Laínez. “The course enabled us to practice how to carry out a rescue together. I wish we could practice more with them.” Cooperation Since 2000, El Salvador participates in exchanges with New Hampshire through the National Guard’s State Partnership Program (SPP). The SPP program connects the National Guard of a U.S. state with the armed forces of a partner nation for mutual cooperation. “We are proud to be partners with El Salvador; it fostered great training opportunities, enduring relationships, and deep respect for our cultures,” Lt. Col. Heilshorn said. “Undoubtedly, we will learn from each other and become more balanced as soldiers and as citizens.” CBES was grateful for the instructors’ support, which increased firefighters’ skills and knowledge. “This is an opportunity that will allow our teams to provide better service to people in case of an emergency,” said Major Joaquín Parada, director of CBES. “It matters to us that our units gain different abilities in swift waters, because floods and landslides affect our country during winter, a time we coordinate with FAES to have greater chances of saving the victims.” Salvadoran Army Colonel Domingo Antonio Monterrosa, commander of FAES’s Peacekeeping Operations Center, concluded the exercise with an award ceremony, handing diplomas to all participants and thanking NHANG. “We are grateful for the exchange of knowledge, which will undoubtedly serve to improve the services we provide citizens when emergencies occur and where the Armed Force joins firefighters to protect lives,” Col. Monterrosa said.last_img read more