Ken's Many Musings PaR Events 2019 Contact

Bethel Kebede

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I am currently studying Maths, Biology, Chemistry, and Accounting, planning to study Medicine at University. Outside of my studies, I enjoy travelling and aim to visit 20 countries by the time I turn 20.I also enjoy listening to all genres of music and documentaries relating to different countries.

My blog will include topics such as culture and current affairs, personal experiences and podcasts which I listen to daily. I hope you enjoy reading !

Bethel Kebede



KS Learning

KS Learning provides tuition for all ages inluding GCSE and A Level for a wide range of subjects such as Mathematics, Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, English, History, French, German, Spanish, and more, in the Boroughs of Richmond-Upon-Thames, Hounslow, Kingston-Upon-Thames, and surrounding areas.

Tuition for A level and GCSE for students at school or home schooled in subjects like maths and english



Porridge and Rice

Porridge and Rice combats poverty in the Nairobi slums, home to some of the poorest people in the world, by enabling pupils at partner schools to obtain a sound education.

Porridge and Rice is fighting poverty through education for the extreme poor of the Nairobi slums




Contact

If you have thoughts that you would like to share with the world, please submit them by email.

Note that the editor will decide whether to publish and/or edit emails before publication. No discussion will be entered into.


KS Learning

KS Learning provides tuition for all ages inluding GCSE and A Level for a wide range of subjects such as Mathematics, Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, English, History, French, German, Spanish, and more, in the Boroughs of Richmond-Upon-Thames, Hounslow, Kingston-Upon-Thames, and surrounding areas.

Tuition for A level and GCSE for students at school or home schooled in subjects like maths and english



Porridge and Rice

Porridge and Rice combats poverty in the Nairobi slums, home to some of the poorest people in the world, by enabling pupils at partner schools to obtain a sound education.

Porridge and Rice is working to combat poverty through education for the extreme poor of the Nairobi slums




Contact

If you have thoughts that you would like to share with the world, please submit them by email.

Note that the editor will decide whether to publish and/or edit emails before publication. No discussion will be entered into.


Contact

If you have any thoughts that you would like to share, please feel free to email

Interests

Ethiopia Medicine Documentaries Cycling Travel Charity Teaching Music Food Family Shopping Fashion Swimming International Movies Hygiene Baking Italian Food Reality TV Tennis R&B


Bethel's Kebede

Bethel is a determined young lady, with varied and interesting opinions on life. A hard working student who wants to succeed, and will both because of her attitude and her talents.

Ethiopian Oromos suspect singer was assassinated

17 July 2020

Hachalu Hundessa, a popular Ethiopian singer and political rights activist was assassinated on Monday 6th July while driving in the capital Addis Ababa. Hundessa was a powerful political voice of the Oromo’s which is the largest ethnic group in Ethiopia but has been politically marginalised for over five decades. Before his election, Dr Abiy Ahmed, who is of Oromo descent, gave hope to the Oromo people by promising prosperity but has failed to protect their interests.

Oromo activists have been held captive, tortured and imprisoned for speaking out against the injustices of the Ethiopian government. The assassination of Hundessa sparked protests and unrest in the Oromia region which has led to blocked internet and phone services and the Oromo Media Network being shut down.

Jawar Mohammed, an Oromo activist who constantly challenges Dr Abiy was imprisoned after being linked to the murder of a policeman during the protests but many believe Dr Abiy ordered his arrest to neutralise him. Previously Mohammed has fuelled tension between Amhara and Oromo causing the attacks on many Orthodox churches.

Oromos worldwide call for Oromo to be a separate country to Ethiopia with their own government. This has caused for many businesses and schools in a small town called Shashemene in Oromia to be burned down as they do not support the cause of the Oromo Liberation Front.

Even though my mother is from the Gurage tribe and my Father Oromia, we are Ethiopian.

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The Current Global Pandemic

10 July 2020

Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that cause diseases in animals but recently the newest strain, Covid-19, which had its first case in December 2019, has made its jump to humans affecting 85% of the world's population. Currently, the United States of America is the worst hit country with over 3.4 million cases.

The COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Some of the common symptoms include fever, dry cough and tiredness. However, many are silent carriers and do not display symptoms which makes it difficult to control the spread unless individuals take precautions by using face masks and gloves

As of now there are no vaccines or treatments but there are ongoing clinical trials for potential treatments.

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Silent Witness

3 July 2020

Silent Witness is a British crime drama series which focuses on a team of forensic pathologists and their investigations into different cases. It has been running on BBC for over two decades with about 230 episodes.

I was first introduced to Silent witness around seven years ago when I was waiting for Casualty (a series set in a hospital) to start and the trailer caught my interest. It gave a wonderful insight into the world of pathology which I wanted to pursue as a career but the thought of constantly being around dead bodies didn't sit too well with me. In some episodes there would be a decapitated body part or the murderer would hide the murder weapon inside the victim's body.

It takes two episodes for each crime to be solved due to the attention to minute details at the crime scene and the body. Each episode begins with a crime being committed and the forensic pathologists arriving at the crime scene and carefully looking for clues whether it be DNA, hair or tyre tracks.

It is a brilliant series that keeps getting better and better and I would recommend it to anyone who loves watching crime drama such as CSI.

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It is important to wear a mask

26 June 2020

'My make-up is going to be ruined' or 'It doesn't look good with my outfit' is not the attitude to have towards wearing masks. Healthcare professionals wear masks for over 10 hours a day to protect the country but some people can't wear one for five minutes without complaining.

Masks are designed to protect the person wearing the mask and protect the individuals that the person with the mask comes into contact with. Coughing and sneezing are the main ways that viruses enter the environment. A single cough can produce up to 3,000 droplets. A person usually coughs or sneezes into their hand, then go on to touch a surface. A virus can live on a surface between two hours and nine days depending on the type of surface. Since Covid-19 can be transferred from surfaces to the eyes, mouth and nose, a face mask reminds individuals to not touch their face.

Also, what people do not understand is that they could be a silent carrier even if they are not showing symptoms, eventually passing it on to those they come into contact with, who could have underlying health issues and have a complete opposite reaction to them.

If everyone took the safety and hygiene rules seriously we would be able to flatten the curve and return back to normal quicker.

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My Father and His Black Cab

19 June 2020

After five long years of studying the roads of London by a motorbike and working as a full-time bus driver, in October 2014 my father became part of the London Taxi Drivers Association. To understand his journey over the past six years, I decided to interview him.

Was it hard at first adapting to a new job?
Yes, it was. It took me quite some time to figure out where the best place to find customers was. However, after a couple months I worked out the best time to leave was just before rush hour and head towards the city. Recently, I have started my work day at Heathrow Airport at 6am.

Did you come across any difficulties within the first couple of years?
Once Uber began operating in London, it reduced our number of customers as it was a cheaper option. As more customers were using Uber, black cabs had a harder time finding work around London. However, even though we are a more expensive option, we are a more safer option and many of our drivers do not rely on google maps as we know the streets in and out.

How has Covid-19 affected your work?
I stopped working in March and only began working again Mid-June. As there are barely any customers at Heathrow, I leave a bit later at around 10am and head straight into the city or to Westfield. Work is very quiet but I do get a couple of jobs here and there.

Has your customer base changed?
Yes, as usually I would have a lot of tourists but now it is mostly people who are scared to travel on public transport.

How do you protect yourself while working?
I wear a mask and gloves at all times. There is a split screen between me and the customers sitting at the back. I always advise customers to wear a mask before entering my cab and to pay by card. Once they leave, I sanitize my cab and the cash I have received with wipes which help eliminate virus and bacteria.

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Child Slavery and Trafficking in the UK

12 June 2020

Slavery was abolished in the UK in the early 1800s yet two centuries later around 15,000 children are trafficked into the UK from many countries for reasons such as sexual exploitation, domestic slavery and forced labour.

Traffickers often groom children, families and communities to gain their trust or threaten them with violence. Traffickers often promise children and families that they'll have a better future. The main goal of children trafficking is for the financial gain but why this activity is possible? There are many reasons, for example the poverty, discrimination, lack of education, dysfunctional families, regulations and the political conflict. All these factors along with the gullibility of parents promote the trade of child trafficking.

Modern slavery is present in every single area of the UK such as the pressure on young British children into county lines drug trafficking. Young teens are lured into county lines gangs who offer them a quick way to make money by travelling around the country to deliver packages. Research has shown that gang members usually target black and ethnic minorities between the ages of 12 to 17 who live in council estates.

More needs to be done to recognise the victims of trafficking.

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Female Genital Mutilation

5 June 2020

Female Genital Mutilation is a procedure where the female genitals are deliberately cut, injured or changed for no medical reason. FGM is usually carried out on young girls between infancy and the age of 15, most commonly before puberty starts. It is illegal in the UK and considered child abuse in many countries yet in some parts of Africa over 60% of females undergo this horrific procedure

Somalia has the world's highest FGM rate, with about 98% of women undergoing the mutilation. The coronavirus lockdown hasn't made things better as circumcisers are going door to door offering to cut girls. The question is why do parents put their children through this? Apparently, some reasons are preservation of virginity, marriageability and enhancement of male sexual pleasure. Parents force their children to be deliberately cut to preserve their virginity until they are married to make the future husbands get more pleasure. It's not even for the benefit of the woman. I think this is absolutely disgusting and should be illegal in every single country with heavy rules enforcing convictions and prison time.

However even though it is illegal in the majority of countries around the world, the reason it still occurs till this day is because of the lack of evidence to convict circumcisers.

What is the point of having laws and regulations against FGM if the rules are not going to be properly enforced?

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Yemen

29 May 2020

Since 2015, Yemen has been facing the biggest humanitarian crisis in the world and over 24 million people need urgent aid including food, water and healthcare. However the healthcare system has collapsed and on top of that the number of coronavirus cases are increasing rapidly along with the cholera outbreak.

The conflict began in the 90s when Yemen split into north and south (now it's just called Yemen ). The two opposing sides disagreed on many things leading to continuous fighting between government and anti-government (Houthi) officials. This fighting led Houthi rebels - backed by Iran to take over the capital forcing the president into exile in 2014. Saudi Arabia and its supporting countries began a coalition to reinstate the government by bombing the Houthis causing harm to many innocent civilians. Besides the bombings, Al Qaeda's presence in Yemen has been used to justify US airstrikes.

Why is the media more focused on reporting about Covid-19? Yemen is on the verge of going extinct and everyone is silent.

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Racial Supremacy in Malaysia

22 May 2020

Malaysia, a country with a predominantly Muslim population has three major ethnic groups: Chinese, Indians and Malay races. However, even though Malaysia has a multiracial population with diverse cultural backgrounds, there seems to be hostility towards the Chinese and Indians.

'Ketuanan Melayu' is a political concept which highlights Malay superiority, giving ethnic Malay Muslims specialised rights and privileges. One example of this is the lack of Indians in government service in Malaysia. This social exclusion began when the British colonial power brought ethnic minorities to Malaysia as labourers, whose status in society was unclear so the Malays granted them citizenship. In return for citizenship, the minorities had to recognise Malays as racially superior and allow them to have the first choice on everything such as houses and businesses.

At the University Teknologi MARA , only ethnic Malays are allowed to attend. A couple of years ago students at the university were outraged when a state professional said that one out of ten places should be given to the ethnic minorities causing 5,000 students to riot. The student president and many others believe that ethnic minorities were given the privilege to stay in Malaysia and do not deserve equality. HINDRAF , the Hindu Rights Action Force have led many peaceful protests to protect their temples and exercise their rights to freedom of speech , however this caused the organisation to be banned with the leaders jailed or exiled to London.

Many countries have accepted other minorities into their countries so why can't Malaysia?

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My time in Ethiopia Part 2

15 May 2020

On week two, I decided to visit an autistic centre for a day called The Joy Centre, run by the Nia Foundation. After speaking to the owner on why she decided to open her own centre, she told me that her son was autistic and that she wanted to help other autistic kids whose parents have turned them away. I was then able to visit the classrooms so I went into a classroom used for speech therapy where I saw the teachers aid the children in using everyday objects asking them to describe it, correcting them to perfect their grammar. However, I did find it difficult to be in that classroom as some of them would scream, run or harm others.

As I did find the centre a bit distressing, I found another charity to volunteer at called the Meseret Humanitarian Organization which was an organization set up to reduce vulnerability among children and women. As it was the summer holidays in Ethiopia, the organisation ran summer classes at a school called Temenja Yaj for those who wanted to be ahead in their studies before school began in September. On my first day, I was a teaching assistant as I did not feel confident enough to teach a class of thirty kids in a different language. However, the following days I felt as if I could control the class. The subjects I taught were English and Maths to those in grade three and seven. For my classes, I was given chalk and a textbook and would ask the kids what they had done the previous day and from there I would begin. To those in grade three, I taught them simple multiplication and divisions using algebra and for the grade seven students we would translate sentences in Amharic to English. When I spoke in English, the students would laugh at me and make comments like 'where did she come from' but that never fazed me as I quite like my accent. The only difficulty I faced while teaching were troublesome kids and the constant question of 'can you take me to London in your suitcase'. However, teaching in Ethiopia made my experience more worthwhile.

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My time in Ethiopia Part 1

8 May 2020

As an aspiring medical student, alongside my work experience in London, I decided to take it upon myself to visit my home country and complete some work experience there.

I dedicated the first week of my trip to working at one of Ethiopia's main hospitals called Tikur Anbessa. Originally, my placement was working with the anaesthetists during surgery however their work was limited so I decided to observe different surgeries. Over the course of the five days, I observed around fifteen surgeries from neurosurgery to gastro-intestinal. As the hospital is a teaching hospital for medical students, the surgeon would the whole duration of the surgery step by step and we were allowed to be around the surgical table to observe close up. The surgery which I found gruesome to watch was a craniotomy of tumour which had calcified mineral deposits, located deep in the brain which took about six hours. Seeing the neurosurgeon remove the outer skin layer of the head to the drilling of the skull was very unpleasant to watch along with the blood splatter.

A placement overseas allowed me to witness cases that I might not see at home such as malnutrition and other diseases found in developing countries. My trip to Ethiopia has opened my eyes to medicine in a less developed nation, where hospitals face challenges of over-crowdedness, under-funding and poor infrastructure.

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My identity, Ethiopian or British

1 May 2020

My parents and two of my brothers were born in Addis Ababa but I was born in West London and we all had a different upbringing. My eldest brother was born in Ethiopia and lived there until the age of six and he had recently returned to live there to serve his country in the government sector.

I have been taught to embrace my heritage from a young age from its culture to cuisine and history. At home we speak both Amharic and English. I learnt how to speak Amharic from my regular attendance to Sunday church school where we would understand the Bible and our culture. My favourite thing about being Ethiopian is the culture and history. As many know "Lucy", a 3.2m years old species was found in Ethiopia and many believe it is the land where life originated. Ethiopia is also well known for their churches and historical sites such as Lalibela and Aksum. Furthermore, the dances from the 80 different tribes in Ethiopia and the meals served on a tray for everyone to share is also why love our culture.

Even though I believe I am Ethiopian, on my recent trip to the capital, the locals didn't agree. One look at me and the constant remarks of 'Ferenge' could be heard. Ferenge is another word for a white person or a tourist. Apparently, the way I dressed and the way I would pronounce certain things gave away that I was not from Ethiopia.

However, even if the locals didn't believe I was Ethiopian, I classify myself as both Ethiopian and British.

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Why do we have Salmon every Wednesday?

24 April 2020

I thought it had something to do with its health benefits as it is rich in omega-3 fatty acids but after a conversation with my mother, I found there to be a deeper religious reason.

I was born into an Ethiopian Orthodox family and still to this day learn new things about the religion. My parents are very religious and serious about observing all the religious holidays and different aspects of the religion. Along with the holidays, seven times a year Ethiopian orthodoxes must abstain from eating animal products such as meat, dairy and eggs but fish is allowed. Many people see fish as a non-luxury in comparison to meat. Some devotees refrain from eating before 3pm.The ordinary fast occurs on Wednesdays and Fridays through the whole year unless there is another greater religious holiday occurring at the same time .The reasoning behind two days is that Judas was arranging his betrayal on the Wednesday and Friday is the passion of Jesus. Some other fasting occur during Lent and Christmas where the Orthodox Churches worldwide follow the Gregorian calendar so celebrate religious holidays a few days after Catholics.

Therefore, we have salmon every Wednesday not just because of its richness in omega-3 but because of Jesus' sacrifice for mankind.

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Cleansing Turkey

17 April 2020

September 2016, over 160,000 people were dismissed by the Turkish government run by Erdogan due to their 'involvement on the attempted military coup' including people from every profession. Many did not know of this decree until it was published on the government gazette stating the names of those dismissed from public service and preventing them to travel abroad. The Turkish government had believed that all those dismissed were part of the Gulen Movement which they deem to be a terrorist movement. One Academic professor was dismissed from all academic professions when a book written by Gulen was found In his office, which was thought to be propaganda but the professor had insisted was for critiquing purposes evidence of his support of the movement, just a book.

The Turkish government had been so sure that the failed military coup was Gulen led and cleansed every building which belonged to Gulen, whether it be schools or offices. According to the government, the movement had penetrated the schools, infiltrating the system and using pupils to their advantage by controlling their livelihoods and futures. Although the government are sure this is Gulens doing, they have no evidence so are wrongly dismissing people, leaving them on the on the verge of bankruptcy. Another government assumption was that those who had received high marks in the civil service entrance exam had the answers prior to the exam as they were part of the movement, and they too were not allowed to work. People are calling this as being condemned to a civil death

Many lost their livelihoods and careers all for nothing but assumptions.

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Should lockdown be lifted?

10 April 2020

The simple answer is no. Not right now. Unlike other countries, we are not in a complete 'lockdown' and although there are some recoveries, the UK currently has the worst death rate in Europe. Two months ago, the government passed legislation allowing authorities to impose restrictions on people's movements and activities. However, some of the British public failed to do this as many people were seen sunbathing in parks and breaking lockdown rules by leaving their houses without a reasonable excuse. China, where the virus originated from lifted its lockdown after three months but that was due to strict rules enforced by government officials. Even though the lockdown rules in China were labeled 'brutal' is deemed to be effective. Some of China's rules included the closing of all shops except the essential ones, no transport in and out of the country, and building detectors monitoring body temperatures. In the UK, some restaurants are still opened and flights still come in the country with no compulsory quarantine. At present, the number of UK's confirmed cases is around three times as much of that of China's. If the UK had enforced the same rules as New Zealand, Australia and China there could've been a potential of lockdown being lifted.

However, seven weeks into lockdown and there is an increased use of food banks, a high rate of unemployment, rising cases of domestic abuse, and bankruptcy for businesses who have had to close. The economy has declined with the stock markets at an all-time low. Despite the UK's furlough and loan scheme for workers, COVID-19 will impact the economy in the long run. After the Prime Minister's speech on Sunday where he urged those who couldn't work from home to return on Wednesday has caused public transport to be overpacked which could stimulate a second wave of people are not at a safe distance from each other and have the proper protection as instructed by health professionals.

Easing social distancing without a proper structure for the next couple of months will only cause a second wave putting more strain on the NHS and those essential workers who are risking their lives trying to save the country.

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