MONTHLY NEWS No.222 – 31st March 2017



Hello everyone from the Maintenance Department! 2017 is well on its way with the blink of an eye. In January we were jokingly saying what’s the plan for Easter; well it’s about two weeks’ away!

There has been a steady flow of work coming in from the beginning of the year but we would have liked it if the stress levels were a bit higher trying to organise a tighter workload schedule. Up it central Johannesburg we are electrically revamping two 10 story government buildings which has been a relief to the poor office workers who have virtually no lights at all to work with, besides their computer screens. But it’s that time of the year that the Government institutions suddenly realise that they have to spend their budgets and everything will be a mad rush.

I was fortunate enough to  have had  a day lecturing our DUT  students  on  hydraulics, Pneumatics and oil fired boiler operation. They are all studying to become electricians and engineers. I must say what a pleasure this was relating to a very intelligent bunch of ladies who seemed to find and show an interest in
what I was talking about and asking lots of questions.  Although  some  of  the questions were to do with other types of machinery but having been in the trade since 1974 I was able to answer most of them.

Below are the students being shown how a trucks hydraulic system works:

 Below are students being shown haw a pneumatic tool operates:

Dut 2As far as our vehicles go we have been busy revamping one of our older trucks that’s just had a brand new makeover:

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In today’s economic climate it is always a challenge trying to keep older, robust trucks on the road but with our type of work one has no option. Until next time let’s hope we will be streaming with lots of good news.

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Fun and interesting facts about electricity

  1. Have you ever wondered why birds sitting on a power line don’t get electrocuted? If a bird sits on just one power line it is safe. However, if the bird touches another line with a wing or a foot, it creates a circuit, causing the electricity to flow through the body. This results in electrocution.

2.  In the average home, 75% of the electricity used to power electronics is consumed while the products are turned off. The average desktop computer idles at 80 watts, while the average laptop idles at 20 watts. A PlayStation 3 uses about 200 watts, both when it’s active and when it’s idle.

3. Google searches account for about 0.013% of the worlds’ energy usage. This equals enough electricity to power 200,000 homes continuously. The energy it   takes to conduct 100 searches on Google is the equivalent of a light bulb burning for 28 minutes.

pic 54.  A refrigerator uses less energy than a PlayStation 3.

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5.  A Malawian teenager named William Kamkwamba taught himself how to build a windmill out of junk and bring power to his village. He then went on to build a second, larger windmill to power irrigation pumps. He did this all from books he read in the library.

6.  Sweden’s recycling program is so successful that they are asking Norway for their trash to power their own Waste-to-Power plants because they don’t have   enough non-recycled waste.

7.  A jail in Brazil allows its inmates to pedal exercise bikes to power lights in a nearby town in exchange for reduced sentences. Volunteers in the medium-security prison earn one day off their sentence for every three eight-hour shifts they spend on the bikes.

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 pic 8Construction Dust: The Risk to Health and How to Create a Safer Working Environment

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Construction dust is a serious health hazard that can and should be controlled and managed. On construction sites, it can be easy to overlook a less noticeable hazard such as dust, for something much more tangible like scaffolding or machinery. Yet around 12,000 people die every year from occupational respiratory diseases—many more than the number of fatalities from work-related accidents.

 Why Such High Statistics?

Dust is everywhere on construction sites as a result of various activities, from cutting and sanding materials to excavation, drilling, and demolition.  It’s an impossible substance to avoid.  But while the stats remain high, it is an unnecessary risk to health that should be effectively managed on every construction site.  And it’s important to note that some types of dust are worse than others.

For example, ongoing inhalation or ingestion of fibrous dust and silica dust—generated from materials such as granite, concrete, and sandstone, or disturbing asbestos-containing materials can cause potentially fatal illnesses such as lung cancer and other serious respiratory diseases.

Other dusts—generated from wood, plasterboard, or limestone—have lower toxicity levels. So, although with continual exposure they will cause damage to health, the life-threatening risks are lower.

There’s no doubting that the body is an incredible machine.  It works hard on a daily basis to expel from its system foreign particles that have been inhaled or ingested via food, drink. or simply by licking one’s fingers.  But, sadly, it’s not infallible.

Harms from Exposure to Construction Dust Foreign particles that get past the body’s defences can settle in the lung tissues where they stay indefinitely.

For those who are exposed to dust regularly, as is the case for most workers in the construction industry, this settlement of particles builds up.  This is why the risk from dust is high.  Moreover, it can often take years for the effects of dust exposure to show, by which time it can be too late to do anything about it.

For those who are exposed to dust regularly, as is the case for most workers in the construction industry, this settlement of particles builds up.  This is why the risk from dust is high.  Moreover, it can often take years for the effects of dust exposure to show, by which time it can be too late to do anything about it.

The results of exposure to dust can be broken down into five categories:

  •     Respiratory cancers
  •     Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  •     Pneumoconiosis
  •     Non-cancerous respiratory diseases
  •     Occupational asthma

Life-threatening, respiratory cancers include lung cancer and a cancer of mesothelial tissue (mesthelioma), which is associated with exposure to asbestos. And, according to the HSE,it’s estimated that as many as 20 trades’ people a week could be dying from asbestos damage to their lungs.

COPD, which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema, is a disease that reduces the size of the airways.  It has no cure.  There are an estimated 4,000 work-related COPD deaths in Great Britain each year.

Pneumoconiosis is a disease that tends to go unnoticed for years.  It’s caused by exposure to dusts, such as asbestos and silica.  And while it has declined in recent years, with lax health standards on some construction sites, it is still a definite risk.

The last two health-risk categories may not have the same impact as the first three, but that doesn’t mean they should be taken any less seriously.  Any respiratory disease, including asthma, will have a huge impact on quality

of  life,  affecting  everything  from  carrying  out menial tasks to playing in the park with the kids. And the latest HSE information shows that there are  around 10,000  new  cases  of  work-related respiratory problems each year.pic 10But it can be avoided.

How Can the Risk on Construction Sites Be Minimized?

Minimizing health risks comes down to ensuring you have (and use) the right equipment.

The two most common effective ways to reduce the risk of dust when performing standard tasks on construction sites are:

Water dampening is an effective method, but it can be difficult to manage.  It requires the site to be thoroughly soaked prior to beginning work, and a constant flow of water to be maintained during the entire task to prevent dust particles becoming airborne.  Therefore, having a sufficient supply of water and access to it are crucial elements.

The second method for reducing the risk of dust permeating the air is using specialist extraction and filtration units. With the right dust extraction and filtration systems in place, along with barriers and enclosures, construction dust can be efficiently managed and contained.

This latter method greatly reduces the risk of over-exposure for site personnel, and can cut potential clean-up costs that may occur when carrying out works adjacent to sensitive surroundings.


Protecting the health of construction site personnel is paramount to reduce the number of people affected by occupational respiratory diseases each year. And remember, it’s easily overcome—simply have the right risk assessments in place and use the right equipment to create a safer, cleaner environment for everyone.

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Blastfrom the PAST

Can you guess who these adorable little faces belong to??

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Pub & Diner

April Friday Food Special

07 – Vetkoek & Mince

21 – Omlette Muffins

28 – TBA

2017 has been a great year so far from the initiation of new Ja Bru members to fun-filled music nights and seeing new as well as old faces whether they were local or far away.  In January we had the privilege of welcoming our youngest Ja Bru Member to date, Dylan “Smous” as well as our oldest member to date, Theo “One-Two, One-Two” pic 14

In February Ernst and John graced our little pub with some music. This was a very well attended evening including some of the CREC staff sneaking in for a bit of dinner and dancing. We definitely look forward to having them back here tearing up the carpet in the future.  March brought with it some more music with the angel-voiced Don Seagreen (left). A beautiful performance that just kept people begging for more; don’t worry, he’ll be back in the future!!  pic 15Fried Cinnamon Roll Apple Turnovers


Serves 9-10 turnovers

2 Granny Smith apples, chopped

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons brown sugar
1½ tablespoons cinnamon

1 pack of 5 large cinnamon rolls (or you can use normal bread dough)

1 egg

Vegetable oil

Cinnamon sugar for coating


  1. Heat 2 inches of vegetable oil in a pot to 350˚F/120˚C.
  2. Pat chopped Granny Smith apples dry with paper towel.
  3. Mix in brown sugar, cinnamon, and 1 tbsp of flour.
  4. Open your cinnamon rolls and reserve icing.
  5. Cut the cinnamon rolls in half and roll out each half into a 2 in x 2 in
    square. Place a dollop of icing and apple mixture onto the square.
  6. Beat egg in a bowl and brush the sides of the square.
  7. Fold the square into a turnover shape and seal closed with your finger,
    making sure to get the air out from inside.
  8. Primp the edges with a fork.
  9. Place turnovers into oil and fry for about 2 minutes on each side or until
    golden brown.
  10. Toss in cinnamon sugar.
  11. Serve and enjoy!


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A little note from the stores..

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Birthdays April/May – Happy Birthday to the following people for April & May:

08.04.2017 – Leonard

09.04.2017 – Vic Lotter

13.04.2017 – Neil Stewart

14.04.2017 – Jordash Boddy

04.05.2017 – Innocent Nkabinde

07.05.2017 – Bassie Wessels

12.05.2017 – Amon Thabethe

17.05.2017 – Tony Petersen

22.05.2017 – Sherry & Brigdett Nicholson

24.05.2017 – Armsy Canham

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 Ambrose Williams

Word of the Month

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What are some Natural ways to Quit Smoking??

If you are reading this post right now, then you know that smoking is bad for you. You know you should quit. You likely have loved ones that want you to quit. You know you are endangering your health and the health of others around you. You know you need to quit. But it’s so hard isn’t it? It’s easy to overlook the cold hard facts about smoking. We’re bombarded with facts everywhere – from television and radio advertisements to guerrilla marketing in the streets, to the advice of family or friends. You just can’t get away from people telling you that smoking is bad.

Maybe that’s a good thing. Smoking is one of the biggest causes of preventable disease and death in the United States. According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, smoking results in “more than 480,000 premature deaths and over $300 billion in direct health care expenditures and productivity losses each year.”  pic 24




The Stats on Smoking

Right now, nearly 20 million women in the United States smoke cigarettes. Did you know that a female smoker’s risk of disease and death is actually greater than a man’s risk?

The CDC state that between 1964 and 2014, “a woman’s risk of dying from smoking has MORE THAN tripled.” If that’s not scary enough, consider these additional facts from the CDC:

  •  200,000 women die every year from smoking-related disease
  • Women smokers over the age of 35 have a slightly higher risk of death from heart disease than men who smoke
  • Female smokers are more likely to die from COPD than male smokers

Long story short, smoking is bad and it’s even worse for women, it seems.

The good news is that smoking among U.S. adults has decreased by over 5 million people in the last 9 years. This means there are less people smoking and more people quitting. If they can do it, you can too.

That’s what I’m here to share with you today. So let’s start the only way I know how; with the natural approach. When people first started asking me for advice on how to quit smoking once and for all, I had to find out, what are some natural ways to quit smoking?

 Conventional Smoking Cessation Aids

Back in the early 90s, the popular go-to for many smokers was Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT). According to National Institute on Drug Abuse, NRTs such as the nicotine patch or nicotine gum were the “first pharmacological treatments approved by the FDA for smoking cessation.”

You can imagine the popularity of these treatments when they first came on the market. Later, medications like Chantix and Zyban were also developed.

These treatment options have helped thousands of people quit smoking and can be discussed with your physician if you feel they might be a good fit for you. Keep in mind, the side effects can be severe and plentiful with these treatments so please weigh all your options before committing.

However, the side effects of continuing to smoke are likely much worse. At least the medication treatments are short-term and will stop you from a long-term addiction.

 Natural Ways to Quit Smoking

I’m going to guess that if you landed here on the Health Ambition site, you’re looking for a natural way to quit smoking. Lucky for you there is tons of advice out there on how to successfully accomplish this. As always, I’m here to tell you about it!

Preparation is Key

While most people think that quitting starts from the moment you finish that last cigarette, that is far from the truth. To have the best chance of success, you should go through a thorough preparation period to get your body, and more importantly your mind, ready for what is to follow.

thorough preparation period to get your body, and more importantly your mind, ready for what is to follow.  Some people quit cold turkey without a prior thought and handle it just fine. Others need planning, assistance and time.

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5.  Ways to Prepare Yourself to Quit Smoking

 1.  Discover Your “Why”

I think the most important thing a smoker can do as they start their journey is to figure out why they are doing it. How do you figure that out? It comes down to asking yourself some simple, yet extremely meaningful and helpful questions:

  •  WHY are you quitting?
  •  WHY is quitting important to you?
  •  WHY is this time going to be different?
  •  WHY are you ready to make this change?

Answering these simple questions will get your mind in the right space. It will remind you why you have decided to do this, who you are doing it for and why you are going to succeed. Maybe you are quitting for health reasons or because you don’t want to set a bad example for your children. Maybe you are quitting because you had a loved one die from a smoking-related illness or maybe you are just sick and tired of being dependent on nicotine.

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 2.   Track Your Current Habit

Something you can do, even before you have your last cigarette, is monitor your current behaviors. Tracking your smoking habit is a great way to see when, where and how your smoking habits occur. I know for lots of my friends, they often mindlessly smoked due to boredom, anxiety or social situations.

Identifying the things you might be doing mindlessly can be helpful. Try it out by asking these questions and then tracking yourself for a week or two.

  •  What time of the day are you smoking?
  •  What triggers the need to smoke?
  •  Are you smoking out of habit, for social reasons, boredom, etc.?
  • How often are you smoking?
  • Where are you smoking?
  • With whom are you smoking?

What time of the day are you smoking? What triggers the need to smoke? Are you smoking out of habit, for social reasons, boredom, etc.? How often are you smoking? Where are you smoking? With whom are you smoking?

Pinning down all of these points can be very eye-opening. Sure you might know that drinking alcohol causes you to smoke more, but who are you with when that happens? Where are you when that happens? Getting intimate with your habit’s surroundings can really help you when you actually quit.

 3.  Tell Friends and Family about Your Decision

There is nothing like good old accountability to keep you on task. Publicly acknowledging that you are trying to kick a habit is a great way to do this. Tell your friends and family, or even post on social media. This step can be a great way to hold yourself accountable to your goals.   You are going to be much   more motivated throughout the process and eager to not let others down.  pic 27You can even go so far as to create your own smoke-free accountability group.  Accountability groups are successful because you can have a group of   like-minded individuals, eager to accomplish the same goal. The camaraderie you develop with each other can pull you all up in a positive direction

4.  Fill your Smoke-Free Tool Box

In this day and age there are plenty of tools available on your computer, your smartphone or even in your town or city that can help you quit. Check out the following tools you can plan to have on hand before you start.

  • Smoking apps on your phone that helps you quit.
  • Nicotine Anonymous 12-step Recovery Program
  • Toll-free hotlines through the CDC Cold-Turkey Quitters Support Group

5.   Learn to Manage Your Triggers and Cravings

Knowing triggers in advance can help you learn to deal with them. Triggers can come in different forms such as emotions, habits or social situations. If you know certain emotions like anxiety, stress or loneliness cause you to reach for a cigarette, start brainstorming new ways to ease those troublesome feelings.

Perhaps triggers come when you are in the midst of daily habits like drinking a coffee on the way to work, or while drinking alcohol or talking on the phone. If you can identify these situations ahead of time, you can be more aware of subconsciously reaching for a smoke.

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Lastly there can be social triggers like certain social events, bars and or even hanging in a group of smokers. You might have to plan to avoid these places initially, especially if you know it will be too hard to stay strong.

  Slowly reintroduce yourself once your cravings are under control.

After you prepare to quit, then comes the time when you just have to do it. You will eventually smoke your last cigarette. The cravings will kick in. The feeling that you won’t succeed will be in the forefront of your mind. The thought that maybe you don’t want to succeed will also be there

Ignore it.

Instead try these 4 things in order to stay occupied without resorting to medicated relief or alternate addictions.

 4. Things to Do Once You’ve Quit

1.  Stay Busy

Idle hands are the devil’s playground. The most important thing you can do, especially in the early days is stay busy. Now is a great time to pick up a newhobby, try a new sport, scout out a new park or theater or even try a new form of transportation, like a bicycle, to get to work.

2. Exercise

Speaking of biking, exercise is an amazing way to spend your time now that you aren’t smoking. Not only will you get out some pent-up frustration but you’ll also brighten your mood, increase your strength and stamina and help out your overall health and well-being.

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 3.  Avoid Smoke-Filled Events, People and Restaurants

A great thing to keep in mind during this time is smoke-free establishments. You probably don’t want to stay busy by checking out a new smoke-filled bar down the street. Plan your smoke-free playtime in places where smoking is not allowed; places like a movie theater, the library, a bookstore, museum, art gallery or even a local gym or pool

4.  Don’t Take One Single Puff

At some point in time you will likely be so overcome with the urge to smoke that you’ll think, I just need one puff. Don’t do it. I beg you. That one puff could send you into a downward spiral.

For me, I had the occasional cigarette here and there in my younger days but I never developed an addition or urge past that. My dad however, smoked most of his life and after quitting 5 years ago has told me that if he had even 1 cigarette, he’d be at the store buying a carton a minute later.

We are all different, you know yourself and what you can handle. Just be smart about it and always go back to your “why.”If these aren’t enough ideas for what to do in the midst of  quitting,  you  can  always  try  about 101  more ideas here. Even with all this preparation and these great tactics in place, without the aid of medication or NRTs, quitting cold turkey can still be extremely difficult. The good news is there are tons of other natural helpers out there waiting for you.

pic 305.  Natural Ways to Quit Smoking

When it comes to quitting you have to try what works best for you. Aside from giving it the good old college try you can also solicit assistance from some natural tactics said to help with quitting your smoking habit.

The Quit smoking Community discusses the 5 best ways to quit smoking naturally, they

  •  Water
  • Ginger Grape Juice
  • Ginseng
  • Vitamins

Water helps flush toxins out of your body and gives you that extra boost your body so desperately needs as it rids itself from years of nicotine abuse.

Ginger is a great aid for an upset stomach. When quitting, people often complain of an upset stomach. Ginger is a great way to help with that symptom.

Grape juice has acids that naturally detoxify your body and along with water can help clean your body of toxins more quickly.

Ginseng is said to help control cravings, along with many other benefits:

And finally, vitamins of course will help replenish the system that you may have been ignoring all along.If you are looking for some more spiritual assistance with quitting, give these two options a try.

1.  Meditation and Mantras

I talk time and time again, in many of my blog posts, about the importance, significance and benefits of meditation. You’d be remiss to ignore all the benefits meditation has to offer. Mantras are something I don’t discuss quite as often but they are something I totally use in everyday life. Finding a mantra that you connect with, learning it and then repeating it daily or during triggers or cravings can really help move you through the tough parts of quitting cigarette

2.  Smoking Cessation Retreat

Want to take a more relaxing and Zen approach to quitting? Try out a Smoking Cessation Retreat. You can have your choice between an outdoorsfitness-based retreat or a more spiritual soul- searching retreat. Either way you’ll be surrounded by plenty of like-minded people trying to kick their smoking habit just like you.  It’s a great way to make lifelong friends, gain new insight, receive counselling and help with behaviour modification. If you aren’t up for a week-long retreat you can always check to see if a smoking cessation day clinic is available in your area.

 Final Thoughts

While trying to quit smoking might be one of the most difficult things you’ll ever do, it is certainly not impossible. By preparing beforehand, discovering your why and using all the tools in your smoke-free toolbox, you’ll be well on your way to being nicotine-free. Remember that preparation, acknowledgement of your current surroundings, and getting in touch with why you are doing this, will be the ultimate tools to success.

So what do you think? Are you ready to kick your habit for good and experience a life of health and freedom from addiction? I hope so. We are all ready, willing and waiting to help you on your journey. If you are in the process of quitting or thinking about quitting, please comment below so we can hear your struggles and your story.

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