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Children who walk to school ‘are ahead of the rest’

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Children who walk to school ‘are ahead of the rest’ – Family News & Advice | Parenting, Marriage & Kids | The Irish Tim – Tue, Apr 30, 2013.

Post Celtic tiger, walking to school might seem a nice alternative to being dropped at the gates daily in a gleaming 4×4. But apart from the obvious physical benefit of a bit of basic exercise, is there another advantage to making our children exercise their bodies? Apparently so. It also helps them exercise their brains.

A recent Dutch study of 20,000 children aged 5-19 proved that those who cycled or walked to school performed better on tests demanding concentration, the effects of which lasted up to four hours after they began the school day.

The study showed that the impact of early morning exercise was greater than the effect of diet – including a good breakfast. But more than the short-term impact of improved concentration, the research showed that the cumulative effect of walking or cycling to school was the equivalent to someone half a year further on in their studies…

Pambazuka – A lethal cocktail for Africa

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Pambazuka – A lethal cocktail for Africa.

The World Bank’s working definition of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) is ‘Private organizations that pursue activities to relieve suffering, promote the interests of the poor, protect the environment, provide basic social services or undertake community development.’ But many people now ask whether the NGOs that work in Africa are progressively engaged in activities that are developmentally sustainable. And, by the way, how democratic and accountable are the NGOs?

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