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Avoid this food brand whose agenda is to gain the Black pound

There is power in Black people’s money, whether we have a little or a lot of it. The people at the top know it, which is why they continue to use us to keep themselves way up, out of reach, at the top of the pyramid. Lo and behold, some of those people include an Asian family making profits at the expense of Black people. You may be familiar with the brand, Tropical Sun. Tell us, would Asian people like it if Black people started copying Asian foods and passing them off as better than the brands that are already out there and actually produced by people who look like the consumer? We think not.

The following is taken from one of many black conscious chats we are in, about how Tropical Sun is ripping off products from the authentic Caribbean brand, Grace Foods.

I was shopping in the Caribbean section of Sainsbury’s yesterday and I had to enlighten a brother about the Tropical Sun goods he was about to purchase. He was grateful for the intervention. Once home I thought to myself what is this company up to……

Well, well,  it seems Tropical Sun / Jamaica Sun have gone to great lengths to obtain that ‘black pound’. Over the last couple of months they’ve moved their company from Finchley North London to………’The home of black people’ – Brixton. They have also changed the main director to someone with a very Caribbean name. Let’s be clear, this is just a step to obtain the black pound, by having a black face for the company.  Tropical Sun / Jamaica Sun was and still is an Asian company but now with a black face  – I can’t wait to see the advertising campaign that will follow. Keep the boycott going of Tropical Sun / Jamaica Sun people, it’s having an impact. ONLY BUY Grace Foods,  Dunns River or Walkerswood or those well established from the Caribbean.

Additionally they have gone to great lengths to stop the airing of their derogative comments about black people & the bad press regarding their products on YouTube. Can you believe on their website, they are trying to blame consumers about the bugs found in their products – blaming it on consumer storage rather than themselves. So many consumers can’t be wrong Tropical Sun!

We can not allow another race to copy the product line of well established black food products and dominate the distribution and selling of our foods. If so, we open ourselves up to many future problems, as this company has already displayed their thoughts about our race.

This company and others alike, only want our money; have no regard for us and fail to invest back into our communities. They are going to great lengths to get our money because they know once we are duped, their families will be wealthy for generations (think about how they own hair shops ). We need to be smart with our spending – supporting our own to have a strong community just like many other  communities do. Companies like Tropical Sun will go to great lengths to get our money but will not employ our people. We need to also go to great lengths to understand the long term  impact of buying black for our own HEALTH and community WEALTH. Stay WOKE people! Have a great day.

Are you your brother’s keeper: Brixton to host Good 2 Give event tomorrow night

We don’t celebrate pagan holidays but this event involves giving back to our own community which is something we need to practice more often…. so if you are free tomorrow night, get down to Brixton to show some love. Black owned hair initiative, the Hair Care Revolution has teamed up with the Community Collective to give out presents in Brixton. The event will start at 6pm, and we’ve been told that the organisers need some help, so here are the ways in which you can get involved:

  • Volunteers needed to help wrap presents
  • If any businesses would like to donate gifts to give away
  • People to support the gift giving of small gifts, or to donate unused gifts large or small. Or offer £10 towards the buying of gifts from local discount stores.
  • Alternatively do you have any unused past presents, gifts toys, books etc. that you could donate?

The organisers said:

“We are aiming to give away over 200 presents this Friday many of whom are under privileged. If we do not look after our own who will?”

 

For further details please contact:

Hairlove17@gmail.com
Call or whats app : 07494 324 484

Current business Involved in this initiative include:

Costa Coffee
McDonald’s
Marks & Spenser’s
Nando’s
KFC
Lambeth Council
Local press & Celebrities
Community collective
Hair Care Revolution

Sickle Cell Cause support group nominated for Haringey Community Award 2017

The Sickle Cell Cause support group, based in Tottenham, north London, have been nominated for the Haringey Community Impact Awards 2017, following the hard work the group has put into helping raise awareness about sickle cell, and in helping those who suffer from the genetic condition.

Last year, the group won the Haringey Community Award for the  ‘Most Effective Community New Comers 2016.’ This year, they have been nominated for ‘Improving the Health & Well being of Community Members, 2017.’ Founder, Samantha Greaves, said:

We believe that we are making a difference, and because many of us in the support group live with the ravages of the sickle cell disorder, our work can be more challenging, Despite this, we love what we do and endeavour to continue with passion so we can serve our sickle cell peers and the wider community.

During October, the group, who work with the North Middlesex Hospital NHS Trust, spent five consecutive days showcasing a sickle cell awareness table, where members and volunteers took it in turns to share information and handmade goods with the community.

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This is just one of many activities the support has put together to bring more attention to sickle cell. Earlier this year, they held a sponsored walk to help raise money for a blood cell separator machine which the North Middlesex hospital is in desperate need of. Donations are still welcome and the group is grateful for those who have helped and can help. To donate, click here.

On Saturday October 28, 2017, the Sickle Cell Cause will be hosting a Volunteers Workshop Day from 12-4pm at the group’s meeting point, St Ann’s hospital in Tottenham, The event will reveal what people can do to help raise awareness of sickle cell in various areas from hospitals, to schools, to welfare. The workshop is a wonderful opportunity for sicklers and non-sicklers to meet and provide support for each other where possible.

To find out what else the Sickle Cell Cause are doing for the community, click here. 

Keep up to date by listening to sickle cell supporter and community activist, Dr Aboo on Galaxy radio. Tune in on Sundays from 8-10am and Fridays from 3-6pm.
If you’re  convinced that the Sickle Cell Cause deserves to win the award for ‘Improving the Health & Well being of Community Members, 2017,’ click here to show your support! Voting has now been extended to Tuesday October 31, until 5pm!
The winners will be announced on Friday Nonmember 24, 2017!

Sickle Cell Experience Part Two Continued…

It was 3am the next morning. My mum was stable, so I left the hospital. An hour later my mum had called me to come back. She was bawling in pain. This was when I broke down. Seeing my mum in the state she was – I just let it all out.  It was like the nurse was taking the opportunity to ignore my mum when I wasn’t there. Hearing my mum tell me that she had to get out of bed to ask for help, and was told: “someone will be with you in a minute,” and left to wait again, was devastating for me. My mum usually has a crisis in her joints, so to have this one in her chest, was new for her and even scarier for us both.

I asked another nurse for help. It was a nurse beneath the previous one but I didn’t care, I just wanted help for my mum. The previous nurse tried to override me and told the second nurse to return to what she was doing. But, she could see how volatile the situation was so she stayed.

“The notes show that I got the medication”, the male nurse said.

“I’m fully aware that you have covered yourself but this is my mum’s life!”

His response exposed that he had a problem with me challenging.

“What do you know about sickle cell?” he said.

Coming into A&E, fighting for the medication and oxygen and being confronted with a poor attitude to care was a horrible experience. I don’t believe that sickle cell is taken seriously enough. All together my mum was given liquid paracetamol, diamorphine, tramadol & erythromycin – she was on a lot of medication, yet she could still feel the pain. That’s how serious it was. My mum had more than enough to deal with.

Even though the doctor dictated what medication needed to be given, the nurse was not prompt with it. Pain relief needs to be on time to avoid continuous and sudden bouts of pain. When my mum was moved to a new ward at around 8am, things did improve. The nurses were on time with the medication which made the pain more manageable.

My mum was in a serious crisis and she was poorly cared for. Being on a high dosage of medication for 10 days shows that she needed immediate attention but she didn’t get it. Had she received it upon arrival the serious nature of this crisis could have been avoided. Time is of the essence. This is something so essential that needs to change now.

***

Thank you to Samantha and her daughter Leanne, for sharing their stories.

If you would like to volunteer the Sickle Cell Cause, please e-mail sicklecellcause@gmail.com

For more details about the support group, visit the website.

Sickle Cell Experience Part 2: Paramedics diagnosed my mother’s sickle crisis as a chest infection, and a nurse failed to do his job because of his ego

Hospitals are supposed to have a protocol in place for sickle cell patients especially with non-specialist nurses.  Two years after Samantha’s horrible experience at the National hospital, she and her daughter found that such protocols were still not being followed. This time it was at a different hospital.

My mum was alone at home when she had a sickle cell crisis in her chest. An ambulance was called and she was taken to a hospital, in Romford. I got the call and rushed to be by her side. When I got there I was surprised to find her in A&E. My mum had told the paramedics about her sickle cell but they decided she had a chest infection.

My mum told me that in the ambulance, paramedics had said: “… do you want to go to the hospital or not? Usually, we would just tell you to go to your GP. But because it’s 4pm on a Saturday afternoon, with no GP open we can take you to the hospital.”

The message that my mum was in a sickle cell crisis had not been received by anyone who came into first contact with my mum at A & E. In total, we waited for five hours before the first pain killing medication was given.

It was ridiculous.  Whilst waiting in A&E I repeatedly went to the desk asking: “what is happening? Why are we not being seen too?” My mum was worsening and her crisis escalated, and I called for help.

Finally a male doctor came and told us he will be with us in a minute. 30 minutes later the doctor returned and took my mum for an X-ray scan. I left at this point to collect some things for my mum. By the time I came back, my mum was completely in crisis. I don’t know where that doctor disappeared to. She was in severe pain. I was cradling her at this point.

Two hours passed. Another doctor came – he had just started his shift, and with a concerned look on his face, he asked: “What’s going on here?”

I said: “I need to speak to someone that knows about sickle cell,”

The doctor said: “I know a thing or two about sickle cell.”

I explained that my mum was in crisis and that we hadn’t been seen to. The doctor instructs a nurse to attend to my mum. “She needs oxygen and she needs pain relief NOW!”

My mum was moved to A & E major, put in a cubicle and left to wait again.  Fifteen minutes passed. There was a nurse outside our cubicle and I asked him: “Do you know who is supposed to be looking after my mum?”

He looked up and said “I am supposed to be looking after her.”

I said: “Well, we’ve been waiting a very long time. My mum is in crisis, we need help now.”

The nurse looked offended. “I take instructions from the doctor.”

Distressed, I said: “Ok that’s fine, could you get that instruction please? My mum really needs pain relief.”

Nurse: “Like I said, I take instructions from the doctor.”

I went to the desk and demanded for a doctor. The young man at the desk asked for my mother’s name. He told me that the computer system showed that my mum had been seen to. I was shocked. The young man apologised and assured me that my mum would be seen to.

45 minutes later, and the first doctor we met appeared again.  He came into our cubicle and said to mum: “How long have you had sickle cell for?” This is the doctor that was going to treat my mum and he asked her such a question. I was stunned. Sickle cell is genetic, a person is born with it.

Still, without pain relief, mum was in full blown crisis and the doctor continued to ask question after question. I was starting to think that he didn’t know what he was dealing with. He then instructed the same nurse I had previously spoken to, to attend to my mum. His response? “Well, I’ve got a lot of things to.”

I understood that he was busy, as all doctors and nurses are, but my mum did not need to hear him say that in front of her. I had to ask when the catheter (a medical device inserted into the body to treat diseases or perform a surgical procedure), was going to be put in.  When he did finally come, my mum asked him to place the needle because she knows where her good veins are. The nurse wouldn’t listen. Instead he insisted it went where he wanted it to go. He struggled to find a vein and did a bad job. My mum’s hand was inflamed like a balloon.  There was blood everywhere. It was a mess.

Instead of apologising he blamed the vein, gave up and aggressively said: “I’m going to get someone else to do this.” so we had to wait again. 30 mins later, my mum had her catheter put in but there was something wrong. It didn’t contain any fluid. It now took a new doctor to come and attach the pain relief, water and oxygen – all that should have been delivered to my mum upon arrival.

The new doctor authorised specific drugs to be given to my mum. She said: “When you need more, call by pressing the buzzer.” And she left.

The drugs didn’t kill the pain so 45 minutes later I called for the medication and the same nurse who messed up the catheter returned. He behaved like he didn’t want to bring the medication. He was annoyed and said: “You don’t need it.”

I told him “Yes she does and we got authorisation from the doctor” and he told us he’s not authorised to give it. I told him to call the doctor back. He went and came back, without the doctor, but with medication. He hadn’t bothered to read the notes which would have told him that the doctor had authorised the medication. The medication he came back with wasn’t what the doctor had prescribed – instead it was liquid Add to dictionary. It did the job but the nurse had a very poor attitude. It was as if he was thinking that we should be grateful for this favour he did for us, and it got worse.

To be continued…

Sickle Cell Experience: I thought I was going to die because medical staff didn’t know enough about sickle cell

Samantha Greaves, a 50 year old sickle cell warrior and founder of the Sickle Cell Cause support group, expected doctors and nurses to know how to prepare for an emergency operation she needed as a result of sickle cell complications.

I had severe headaches for a few years, and in 2015 I was finally referred for a head scan. I found out that I had a few aneurysms in my head. One was quite big and I was told it could burst at any moment.

My consultant called me, she was very concerned and commanded that I go to the National Hospital – the best in the country for anything to do with the head, so she booked me in. She told me to go now but I wanted to wait until the morning so I could sleep in my own bed. Reluctantly, I obeyed because she informed me that I’d been booked to have an emergency operation in the morning, however it was to be a week later before the operation took place.

On day one at the hospital, there was issues with beds and I didn’t have a drip – just really silly things which made me feel anxious. This operation was supposed to be an emergency, so why did I not have a bed?

Day two, three and four passed. I was still waiting for my operation. Each day I was prepped to go but each day I was returned to my bed. It was a different excuse every day. I could see that the doctors and nurses were unsure of themselves. It was like they hadn’t prepared at all. Two more days passed and I was getting nervous. My daughter who was with me, was nervous. I have sickle cell – I should have been on a drip the moment I arrived. I told the nurses and doctors this, and they didn’t like it, but my life was in their hands – what choice did I have? I have had sickle cell since birth. I have been in and out of hospital all my life – I know what care I should be getting. It was obvious that the nurses, doctors – nobody wanted to touch me because nobody wanted to be responsible if something went wrong.

On day seven, I had had enough, and I called my consultant from my hospital. My consultant contacted the haematology department at the hospital I was at, and told them what to before my operation. It wasn’t until then that I had finally got the operation done, the build-up put me in such a state that I didn’t feel as if I was in the hands of people I could trust. There was just no confidence in what they were supposed to do. By the time I was taken down, I didn’t want to go. I said to my daughter: “What are they going to do to me?” I was terrified. I give thanks to God that I did survive. But that wasn’t the end of it. The delay caused me to have the worst sickle cell crisis I ever had.

I was on a ward with people who had brain tumours and other life threatening conditions. My crisis took full hold and I was vomiting across the room. I screamed in pain, half my body off the bed. I felt embarrassed that everyone could see me like this. I was traumatised. Two cleaners would walk by and pray for me: “Lord Jesus….” they repeated, with raised voices.

I remember the moment I woke up after my violent episode. There were cards left on my bedside table. “What is this?” I remember thinking to myself. I later learnt they were Angel cards. The woman with the brain tumour had put them there. It was her way of trying to help me, spiritually. She left them there to protect me. The cards and the praying cleaners made it seem like the whole ward believed I was going to die; they too were traumatised.

What was meant to be a two day stay in hospital, turned into almost a month. I was still in pain, from my sickle cell crisis. The doctors didn’t know what to do so they continued to give me more and more morphine. My daughter contacted my consultant again, and I was transferred to my own hospital, North Middlesex hospital, so I could be under the care of my consultant. When the doctors were looking at my medical charts, I saw the shock on their faces as they conferred with each other. I asked them: “What’s going on?”

They said: “You’ve been overdosed, so we have to wean you off the drugs before you come off them completely, and until the pain from the sickle cell crisis recedes.”

I stayed in the North Middlesex Hospital for an additional 18 days after this, and I decided to report the bad practice of the previous hospital, but before I could do this; when I got home, I received a phone call.  It was a nurse, from the National hospital, following their protocol of finding out how a former patient is getting on.

I said: “Your service is terrible, you really need a sickle cell support practice in place. Her reply shocked me: “We have one.”

I didn’t want what happened to me to happen to anybody else, so I suggested that the hospital invite my support group to speak to staff about how to care for sickle cell patients. People are living longer with sickle cell, so doctors and nurses need to be aware that as we get older we will experience additional complications due to age.

They nearly killed me. This cannot happen again.

To be continued…

Blood donors urgently needed for sickle cell paitients

As we have recently become voluntary media correspondents for the Sickle Cell Cause support group, based at St Ann’s hospital in Tottenham, north London, our focus this month has been about Sickle Cell. Sickle Cell disease is a genetic blood disorder which pre-dominantly affects the black community. See our What is Sickle Cell Blood Disorder for more information.

10 year old Matthew Akinmuleya, from London, had his first experience of pain aged 6 months. The little warrior has undergone blood transfusions since birth, which he has needed every month. This means he is likely to have received over 100 transfusions. There are many children and adults like him who are going through the same thing. We as the black community, must do what we can to lend our blood.

To read the full story, please click here.

To register for the Community Mile for Sickle Cell annual sponsored walk on, Sunday July 23, 2017, please click here.

If you would like to sponsor us, please e-mail us at: melanatedscholars@gmail.com

Warrior

I’m a warrior because I have the strength of 10 lions in me
I’m a warrior despite my energy levels are down and my crises occur regularly
I’m a warrior simply because I was destined to be
You see
More meets the eye than “I’m tired”
Just like the angry boss who yells you’re fired to underperforming employees

My body is a machine with the daily battles I have to face
No need to see my battle scars
You see it in my race
Hit by a disease that is genetic
No need for phonetics
No need for you to be apologetic and sympathetic

I fight because I want to win
I fight because I don’t need the accolades of fighting this lifelong battle

This battle can sometimes be long,
Sometimes mankind is wrong
For not doing enough in easing my suffering
But I’ve got the strength to keep hovering

With radiance from the Most High
I will continue to fly
As the warrior he made me
Even when times it can be the end for me
I will not let sickle cell defeat me

Ogechi ©

 

World Sickle Cell Day is Monday June 19, 2017

What is Sickle Cell Disorder?

Sickle Cell disease is the name for the group of genetic blood disorders. Our red blood cells contain a protein called haemoglobin which carries oxygen from the lungs to the tissues of the body, as well as transporting CO2 and hydrogen ions back to the lungs.

Sickle cell is inherited from both parents who carry the trait, and comes in many forms:

  • Haemoglobin SS
  • Haemoglobin SC
  • Haemoglobin SB (beta) thalassemia
  • Haemoglobin SD
  • Haemoglobin SB+ Beta Thalassaemia
  • Haemoglobin Beta-Zero Thalassaemia

Sickle Cell is pre-dominantly found in African and Caribbean people. Other people affected are Asian, Arab and Mediterranean. The most common form is Sickle Cell Anaemia. People with this have Sickle haemoglobin (HbS). This means that the red blood cells are devoid of oxygen and are unable to move around like normal blood cells (Hba), which are donut shaped.

Because the cells are unable to move, they stick together and end up blocking blood vessels which causes tissue and organ damage, as well as severe bouts of pain. Such episodes of pain are known as a ‘Sickle Cell Crisis’ or a ‘Vaso-Occlusive Crisis.’

A crisis can be triggered by:

  • A sudden change in temperature
  • Stress
  • Dehydration
  • Infection

A crisis can last anywhere from a few minutes to a number of days or months.

So what causes Sickle Cell Anaemia?

A mutation in the gene that instructs the body to produce haemoglobin.

What are the health problems Sickle Cell Anaemia can lead to?

  • Iron over-load
  • Jaundice
  • Swollen joints
  • Migraines
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Strokes
  • Permeant damage resulting in the removal of the spleen
  • Reduced bone density
  • Ulcers
  • Blindness
  • Priapism (painful swollen and lumpy penis which can cause erectile dysfunction)
  • Aneurysms
  • Pneumonia
  • Organ failure
  • Weakened immune system
  • Gallstones
  • Death

How is it inherited?

You will have sickle cell when you inherit the ‘defective’ gene from both parents. If you only inherit the gene from one parent then you have the sickle cell trait. It is likely that your blood will contain some sickle cells, but you will still be able to produce normal haemoglobin, and you won’t usually experience any symptoms.

 

However, inheriting the trait means you are a carrier. This means that you could pass the gene on to your children – but not the sickle cell diseases, unless your partner also has the trait. This is why it is important we test our blood to see if we have the trait or not.

Sickle Cell Anaemia is a very serious genetic condition, which is why it is essential that we understand, empathise and advocate for our people who are living in their thousands in the UK, with this disease. And let’s not forget our Melenated brothers and sisters in parts of Africa and also in America too. Sickle Cell is real and it needs to be acknowledged individually and globally.

 

We are now media correspondents and advocates for the Sickle Cell Cause support group based at St Ann’s Hospital, George Marsh centre, in Tottenham, London. We will also be taking part in the Community Mile for Sickle Cell annual sponsored walk on Sunday July 23, 2017.

 

To get involved and to find out more about sickle cell, please click here.

If you would like to sponsor us, please contact us on: melanatedscholars@gmail.com

The Jus’ Caribbean Festival 2017 is an official sponsor for the Sickle Cell Cause support group. The event will take place Saturday 19 – Sunday 20. Come and enjoy authentic tastes of the Caribbean, and support our own, food-wise and health-wise!

 

Eunice and Ogechi

Afro Hair and Beauty Live 2017: brands to look out for

With just a few days away until Europe’s biggest event dedicated to afro hair, beauty and lifestyle, keep note of the following three brands which will be present on the day!

Looking to refresh your hair regime? Or could you do with a trusted introduction to botanical skincare? Or, maybe you’re in need of new and glam makeup brushes? If you’ve answered yes to any of those questions, then have a look at what could be your next best natural based product yet!

Mielle Organics

Launched in 2014, Mielle Organics is a US based hair and skin brand, which uses a unique blend of herbs, amino acids and minerals to support healthy hair, skin, nails and your immune system too!

Hair products range from an Avocado Hair Milk Moisturizer, Babassu Oil Conditioning Shampoo, Babassu Oil & Mint Deep Conditioner, as well  as Detangling Co-washes and a Peony Leave-In Conditioner. Products also include Mint Almond Oil which is said to be a ‘scalp sensation’, and a great stimulant for hair growth.

The brand also makes products which cater towards children, including a cleansing shampoo, detangling conditioner, and a curling cream all of which contain the key and main ingredient, sacha inchi oil – a South American superfood rich in vegetable sources of omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, vitamins and antioxidants.

To aid hair growth for you child, you can also get an edible daily multi-vitamin,  chewable gummy, great for kids, even as young as 2. With a  combination of Vitamin A, folic acid, and biotin, starting a journey of healthy hair just got easier. Don’t worry, there’s an adult formula too!

Find out more: https://mielleorganics.com/

Phytobotanicals

Based in the UK, Phytobotanicals is a botanic skin care range for beautifying your skin and relaxing your mind. What better way to treat yourself inside and out, using nature’s charms! Products include soaps, deep cleansing face balms, shea butter, natural beauty oils, body polishes and botanic face oil blends. Ingredients, which can be found on the site’s glossary, are a basket a nature’s goods. Here are some of the ingredients used across the products:

  • Avocado oil
  • Apricot kernel oil
  • Beeswax
  • Black cumin seed
  • Borage seed oil
  • Frankincense
  • Geranium
  • Lavender
  • Broccoli seed oil – yes  broccoli. Who’d have thought it eh.

Find out more: https://www.phytobotanicals.co.uk/

Peach and Pearl

If you’re in need of new and beautiful makeup brushes then set your eyes on these gorgeous gems from UK based brand, Peach and Pearl. Slay all day with these brushes, fit for all beauty Queen which are conveniently designed for all abilities. Whether you are a beginner, the seasonal pro or a professional makeup artist, you can work your magic with ease. An added bonus is that Peach and Purl brushes are vegan so you needn’t worry if you have super sensitive skin or suffer from skin allergies Peach and Pearl is beauty made simple and glamorous. What more could we want?

Find out more: https://www.peachpearlbrushes.com/

Start or reboot your 100%natural hair and skin journey with Afro Hair and Beauty Live 2017 The event kicks off at 10:30am and will end at 18:00pm. Get your tickets now while you still can, and grab any of the brands featured. Enjoy!

To see what else is going on in the Black community, see our Black Events page.