Richmond Vale

6 Major Effects of Urbanization That Will Make you Think!

6 Major Effects of Urbanization That Will Make you Think!
In 1800 only about 2 percent of the world's population lived in urban areas. That was a small wonder: Until a century ago, urban areas were some of the unhealthiest places for people to live. According to The Department of Economic and Social Affairs , half of the global population already lives in cities, and by 2050 two-thirds of the world's people are expected to live in urban areas. But in cities two of the most pressing problems facing the world today also come together: poverty and environmental degradation. The majority of people move to cities and towns because they view rural areas as places with hardship and backward/primitive lifestyle. Therefore, as populations move to more developed areas (towns and cities) the immediate outcome is urbanization. This normally contributes to the development of land for use in commercial properties; social and economic support institutions, transportation, and residential buildings. Eventually, these activities raise several urbanization issues. Poor air and water quality, insufficient water availability, waste-disposal problems, andon density and demands of urban environments. Strong city planning will be essential in managing these and other difficulties as the world's urban areas swell.   Environmental Effects of Urbanization Urban populations interact with their environment. Urban people change their environment through their consumption of food, energy, water, and land. And in turn, the polluted urban environment affects the health and...
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Camping at La Soufrière Volcano by Alexandra

Camping at La Soufrière Volcano by Alexandra
La Soufrière is an active volcano on the island of Saint Vincent in the Caribbean. The name is French and some people call it a “Sulfur mine”. You can feel the smell of sulfur as soon as you reach the top.The height of the volcano is 1234 meters (4048 feet). La Soufrière National Park, which includes craters, hot springs and rivers occupies a third of Saint Vincent. [caption id="attachment_11381" align="aligncenter" width="654"] La Soufrière Volcano We set our mind to hike it and camp up there even though we heard a lot of stories from different people that is quite impossible because of the terrain or unstable weather. We took it as a challenge. Most of our grouphas hiked before so we were not completely inexperienced. We decided not to ask a guide to show us the way since we had one of the students done the trail for several times. He never camped up there, but our plan seemed perfect and we had everything in place, including the weather on the morning of the hike. 9 Tips for camping at La Soufrière Volcano: Take in consideration that the rainy season in Saint Vincent starts in May and ends in September. There is no water up there so you need to carry as much as you think you need. We had 5 - 6 liters/person for one...
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Chapter 2 St. Vincent from the New Climate Compliance

Chapter 2 St. Vincent from the New Climate Compliance
Hello again! Enjoy a new chapter from the new Climate Compliance Conference Book. In the Chapter 1 , we presented to you a little introduction about the Climate Compliance Conference, in this chapter 2, we're going to talk about St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Enjoy! Saint vincent and The Grenadines The country of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, also known as 'Hairoun (a)', is located to the south of the Caribbean Sea and has a population of 110.000 people. SVG is a small island nation but its history is quite remarkable and its landscapes are breathtaking. The country has had a long history of resistance against European imperial powers. The people of St. Vincent, the Caribs, managed to protect their homeland from the French and British settlement for 200 years. They were so vigilant that this territory became the last of the major Caribbean islands to be colonized. During this struggle, African slaves escaping from shipwrecks or the surrounding islands were welcomed to settle on the islands. They mixed with the Caribs and are now known as the Black Caribs or the Garifuna people. In 1719 Britain took control over the country and remained in power until 1979, when St. Vincent and the Grenadines claimed its independence and its right to control its own affairs. The country consists of a main island called Saint Vincent and of 31...
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Richmond Vale

New Climate Compliance Book

New Climate Compliance Book
We are just about to finish the first Climate Compliance Conference book and we are happy to share the introduction with you; Introduction Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, after years of climate change related effects, was devastated by the severe weather disasters of 2010 and 2011. In response, Richmond Vale Academy (RVA) took decisive action by initiating a program called "The Saint Vincent Climate Compliance Conference 2012 – 2021" (CCC). The CCC aims to bring people together to identify and undertake concrete climate change adaptation projects. Established in 2002, RVA is a registered non-profit research and education institution situated in the Chateaubelair area of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG). Since opening, students from this country and from around the world have participated in courses centered on poverty reduction, environmental conservation and climate change awareness. The Academy's educational programs give students the opportunity to directly influence positive change on the environment and in communities. As a consequence of its actions, RVA has been the catalyst that motivates and mobilises - both students and local community members - to build resilience into their lives; whilst simultaneously developing themselves personally, academically and socially. Since 2012, the school is honored to have hosted in excess of 250 local and international students that have been divided in 15 work and study teams. Each student has participated in CCC research activities...
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Richmond Vale

The Permaculture Design Course is finally here at RVA!

The Permaculture Design Course is finally here at RVA!
Permaculture is a way of designing your life so that very little of your effort is wasted.  You design your lifestyle to be healthier, cleaner, social, meaningful and productive.  It is the design that makes Permaculture a different way to sustain humanity. So, by doing a permaculture design course,  we can make more efficient societies, workplaces and preserve the beautiful natural resources we have left. Richmond Vale Academy Diving and Hiking Center brings you a 10 days Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) . This course, will open your heart and your mind to a new world by connecting human beings and nature together as one. The course plan, which is based on Bill Mollison's book “ Permaculture: A Designers' Manual ”, will give you an introduction to permaculture as a science that can give the opportunity to live a sustainable life. It will prepare you with the skills and techniques to apply permaculture designs in different settings and at different scales. Why to do a Permaculture Design Course? The most important reason to do a Permaculture Design Course is to build your skills to design a more efficient, co-operative and eco-friendly lifestyle for yourself and others.  We believe in walking the talk – living the lifestyle that will help others to develop.  This course enables much more. You can develop a specialist field, teach others, set up...
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5 Easy ways to Save Energy in The Kitchen! INFOGRAPHIC

5 Easy ways to Save Energy in The Kitchen! INFOGRAPHIC
Have you ever wonder, "Why is conserving energy important?" There are many reasons why you should be concerned about conserving energy whenever is possible. Few people consider where the electricity comes from when they flip on a light or push the start button on a computer. Almost everyone in America has grown up in homes that are powered by electricity. This makes it very easy to take energy for granted, without realizing the cost to both the environment and to your bank account. The truth is that all energy produced and used has an impact on the environment. Luckily you can save energy in home with just a few tips. Ways to Save Energy in The Kitchen With the fridge running 24/7, the stove and the dishwasher, your kitchen is the room in your home that utilizes the most energy. So, with just a few minor adjustments, you can significantly cut the amount of energy you consume. With hydro costs increasing exponentially, you need to adopt energy-saving habits and trying just a couple of these tips, can result in significant savings. (Click infographic to enlarge .) Share this Image On Your Site </p><br /> <p><strong>Please include attribution to http://richmondvale.org with this graphic.</strong></p><br /> <p><a href='http://richmondvale.org/Save Energy in the kitchen/'><img src='http://richmondvale.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/info-5easy-ways-to-save-energy-in-the-kitchen.jpg' alt='5 Easy Ways To Save Energy In The Kitchen Infographic' 540px border='0' /></a></p><br /> <p> #1-...
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5 Amazing Ways To Get The Most Out of a Permaculture Garden

5 Amazing Ways To Get The Most Out of a Permaculture Garden
The term ' Permaculture ' is a portmanteau word for 'permanent agriculture' and 'permanent culture'. Permaculture is basically an agricultural system which focuses on the natural way of practicing agriculture, maintaining the ecological systems and not strictly adhering to the systems followed in modern agriculture. This system of permaculture garden was designed and developed by two Australians named Bill Mollison and David Holmgren . Permaculture has been defined by Mollison as, "A philosophy of working with, rather than against nature; of protracted and thoughtful observation rather than protracted and thoughtless labor; and of looking at plants and animals in all their functions, rather than treating any area as a single project system." Why Should We Use Permaculture? Permaculture gardens serve many functions. Rather than limit the garden to only one use, permaculture gardens employ a variety of uses. A permaculture garden provides food and medicinal crops, wildlife habitats, crafting materials, an attractive appearance, and a private, relaxing atmosphere throughout every season. These types of gardens produce food by using a variety of vegetables, herbs, fruits, and flowers. Flowers are not only grown for their edible or medicinal properties but also as an insect repellent or attracting depending of the needs. They are also good to be used as cut flowers for beautiful bouquets or dried out for additional longer-lasting displays, and numerous plant materials are used...
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Richmond Vale

Farming Beyond Drought

Farming Beyond Drought
The Caribbean accounts for seven of the world’s top 36 water-stressed countries and Barbados is in the top ten. The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) defines countries like Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda, and St. Kitts and Nevis as water-scarce with less than 1000 m3 freshwater resources per capita. [caption id="attachment_11290" align="aligncenter" width="654"] Caribbean farmers have been battling extreme droughts in recent years. A FAO official says drought ranks as the single most common cause of severe food shortages in developing countries, making it a key issue for Caribbean food security. Credit: Desmond Brown/IPS With droughts becoming more seasonal in nature in the Caribbean, experts say agriculture is the most likely sector to be impacted, with serious economic and social consequences. This is particularly important since the majority of Caribbean agriculture is rain fed. With irrigation use becoming more widespread in the Caribbean, countries’ fresh-water supply will become increasingly important. In light of the dilemma faced by the region, the Caribbean Policy Development Centre (CPDC) is spearheading a climate smart agriculture project in which 90 farmers from three Caribbean countries, including Barbados, will participate over the next 18 months. Executive director of the CPDC Gordon Bispham said the aim of the project, in which farmers from Grenada and St Vincent and the Grenadines are also involved, is to support sustainable livelihoods and reinforce that farming is serious...
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5 amazing benefits of mulching the garden (Infographic + Types of mulch)

5 amazing benefits of mulching the garden (Infographic + Types of mulch)
  One of the easiest ways to ensure success in your garden, especially a vegetable garden, is to incorporate mulching into your garden preparations. This doesn’t have to break the bank, but it will provide you dividends in the abundance of vegetables you will harvest from your garden. Whether you live in the city, countryside, or suburbia, and whether you have a huge garden, raised beds, or even if you are using pots and containers, mulch is the unsung hero in the garden. What is Mulch? The word ‘Mulch’ has its roots in German. It comes from the word ‘molsch’ which means ‘beginning to decay’. This is probably used in reference to the first types of mulch that were biodegradable. Mulch is a thin layer of any substance that is spread over the soil. It is used to mimic the conditions that one sees in the forest. What are the Benefits of mulching? Mulchin your plants can give you a lot benefits. Some of them are: (Click The Infographic to Enlarge ) Share this Image On Your Site </p> <p><strong>Please include attribution to http://richmondvale.org with this graphic.</strong></p> <p><a href=' http://richmondvale.org/benefits-of-mulching-the-garden/'><img src='http://richmondvale.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/INFOGRAFIA-MULCH.jpg' alt='5 Amazing Benefits of Mulching The Garden' width='540px' border='0' /></a></p> <p> #1- Gets Plants Through Extreme Weather. During dry spells, mulch can save plants. It acts as an insulator, keeping the soil cool and moist...
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4 Terrible Effects of Poverty on the Brain That You Should Know About It!

4 Terrible Effects of Poverty on the Brain That You Should Know About It!
Issues like hunger, illness, and thirst are all causes and effects of poverty . That is to say, that not having food means being poor, but being poor also means being unable to afford food or   clean water . The effects of poverty are often interrelated so that one problem rarely occurs alone. Bad sanitation makes one susceptible to diseases; and hunger and lack of clean water makes one even more vulnerable to diseases. Impoverished countries and communities often suffer from discrimination and end up caught in a cycle of poverty. However, poverty also affects the brain and the body of those who experience. In fact, poverty on the brain can extend well beyond the years of financial struggle; even helping to perpetuate this situation. What are the Effects of Poverty on The Brain? Imagine having to stress every penny and count every calorie to make sure you are getting enough into your system. Imagine being scared of getting sick because you don’t have medical insurance, or access to any health care service. Now, imagine you have children and you have to provide for them while not being able to financially support yourself. That is what goes through the mind of an adult person living in poverty  24/7; 365 days a year. There are several effects of poverty on the brain, like:  #1- Poverty on...
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Richmond Vale

Benefits of the Moringa Tree (Infographic) + Uses

Benefits of the Moringa Tree (Infographic) + Uses
Moringa oleifera is a small to medium-sized tropical tree native to the Indian subcontinent. The tree is easily recognizable from its light colored knotty trunk and highly branched compound leaves. The fruits of the Moringa tree are thin, 1 ½ -2 ft. long pods.  Click to go to the Uses of the Moringa Tree The M. tree has several names in different parts of the world including its common name of “horseradish tree,” since its roots taste similar to horseradish root when raw. In Ayurvedic medicine it is known as shigru. Although the sparse crown of the drumstick tree offers little shade from the hot sun of the tropics, it is a common fixture in almost every yard and by the wayside. The M. tree have innumerable health benefits. The leaves, flowers and the green pods of Moringa are all edible and are widely use in Indian cuisine. This miracle tree is beneficial as food because of its ability to grow in a variety of climates, especially subtropical climates. In fact, M. Oleifera grows in virtually all countries where malnutrition is widespread and may be a great part of a comprehensive plan to alleviate malnutrition throughout the world. Nutritional Value Of Moringa Moringa leaves and pods are a nutritional powerhouse.It is a rich source of essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. It...
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Richmond Vale

Impressions on St. Vincent by Karolina

Impressions on St. Vincent by Karolina
By Karolina St. Vincent, the place about witch I have been dreaming for a long time   I am in the place about witch I have been dreaming for a long time (without even knowing that it exists). One might wonder why St. Vincent is so special. To begin with, the nature here is just breathtaking. No matter where you turn, you are always surrounded by mountains. It is been two months since we are here, and I cannot get enough of the view. Vegetation is incredibly rich as well. The soil is so rich that if you stand on it for a while you will become taller they say. Moreover, there is a huge variety of fruits here. When one end, other start bearing fruits. By the way, mango season is about to start and when it starts people can survive just on mangoes. Also, coconuts are very important part of life in St. Vincent. If you are thirsty they provide you with water, if you are hungry they fulfil you with nutritious coconut meat and et cetera. Second off all, Vincentians are super friendly, it is even hard to describe in words how friendly they are. I really like to be around locals: they are bringing good vibes. Vincentians always greet you! Usually, after “good morning”, “good day”,  “good night” follows other sentences or...
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Fishing with locals by Karolina

Fishing with locals by Karolina
By Karolina On Friday I had a very unique experience. Octavian, Christopher, Ammon and I went fishing with locals. We set the time at 16:30, however they were fashionably late. A boat was almost full and the only one I knew there was Tyson. When I was about to jump into the boat, they gave me a specific look. It was not new for me, I call it “what that girl is doing here?!” However, it did not really bother me.  I could already smell the adventures! I used to go fishing with my father, brother and cousins a lot before but I have never tried a net fishing. I like watching how people interact with each other here. Locals were speaking very fast with a heavy accent so I barely could understand the content. They body language showed that they were relaxed and knew what they were doing. Yet for me all the fishing procedure did not seem very well organized. In the beginning we were diving in order to check the place. I did not bring the swimming suit with me, so I just jumped to the water with all my clothing. Also, if I would have one I would do the same because I really do not like this kind of attention in just guys company. After checking the place Tyson took a...
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A life-changing experience with the Fighting with The Poor Program!

A life-changing experience with the Fighting with The Poor Program!
Poverty is about not having enough money to meet basic needs including food, clothing and shelter.  However, poverty is more, much more than just not having enough money. The World Bank Organization describes poverty in this way: “Poverty is hunger. Poverty is lack of shelter. Poverty is being sick and not being able to see a doctor. Poverty is not having access to school and not knowing how to read. Poverty is not having a job, is fear for the future, living one day at a time. Poverty has many faces, changing from place to place and across time, and has been described in many ways.  Most often, poverty is a situation people want to escape. So poverty is a call to action -- for the poor and the wealthy alike -- a call to change the world so that many more may have enough to eat, adequate shelter, access to education and health, protection from violence, and a voice in what happens in their communities.” Money isn't everything. The greatest form of wealth is human connection and human interaction. It's one of the most influential currencies in the world. In our Fighting with the Poor Program, we go shoulder to shoulder, hand on hand with the Poor, to tackle the possible limitations they have to overcome this unfair situation where they are. What is The...
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Richmond Vale

4 Benefits of Intercropping that you never imagined!

4 Benefits of Intercropping that you never imagined!
Intercropping is defined simply as growing two or more crop types on one field. The practice of intercropping has actually been around since farming began. Modernization of farming equipment has changed our farming practices into what they are today, which is largely mono-cropping. Mono-cropping is planting only one crop on a field that was adapted with the intention of maximizing the amount of seeds you could plant on one field and in a shorter period of time.  Types of Intercropping These are the basic four methods commonly employed. Sometimes they involve annual grains and vegetables, such as the mixed intercropping classic of corn, beans and squash. Sometimes there are perennial species with annual crops growing amongst them, say perennial garlic and basil with annual tomatoes. Perennials also work well with other perennials. In parts of the tropics, bananas, papayas, coffee, vanilla and cacao make a crackerjack intercropping team (For example here at Richmond Vale Academy , we have what we like to call the “Dessert Field” with bananas, cacao and vanilla. Delicious!). In essence, these are all forms of companion planting, in which one plant provides some useful component for another. The technique can be small in scale, something seen in a home garden. However,  strip cropping is also becoming more common for progressive industrial models. - Row Intercropping It’s the growing of two or more...
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Volcano hike or teamwork at its best by Karolina

Volcano hike or teamwork at its best by Karolina
By Karolina On Friday us, the facilitators, and all DRET students hiked up the volcano. We left RVA quite early in the morning with a lot of water on us. Before starting to climb up Selly suggested gathering all together in the circle. I really liked that ritual because it lifted our spirits up. Also, since nowadays our pace of life is very fast we barely have time to stop, look, listen to others and especially consider other people’s needs. In DRET group was one overweight girl. Even though Ashika was very determined to go up, just looking how hard she was making her first steps made us question if she can reach the peak. And you know that, she managed! In the beginning Selly suggested to let Ashika go in front that she can set the pace. Seemed like people respected Sellies suggestion but it was impossible to keep that super slow speed up all the time. In order to entertain other students Selly started singing. However, this plan did not work out. So Vanessa and Jorge decided to walk with Ashika on her pace. It was so nice of them! I can just imagine how tiring it was physically as well as emotionally. They told that Ashika called her father and proudly said that she hiked up the volcano. Meanwhile Selly, Elin, Ammon, me...
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It’s dangerous out there, they said! By Chris

It’s dangerous out there, they said! By Chris
By Chris Before we came to St. Vincent many people told us over and over, how dangerous it can be and how many things have happened in this island. They were talking about robberies and fights and so on. Of course, we were a little concerned about the potential danger ahead of us. I guess all such things happen here, but let’s be honest, they happen everywhere. No matter where you go, you will never be 100% save. As mentioned before, we were quite concerned about the things that might happen, but after almost 3 months I haven’t witnessed one single situation that seemed somehow threatening. In fact, the people here in St. Vincent are the friendliest and most welcoming people I have ever met. In my hometown in Austria there were more occasions that made me anxiety. Everybody here is so incredibly friendly and chilled, with a few exceptions I guess, but in all my time here I haven’t met a single person that didn’t put at least a little smile on my face. I really think that if more people would carry a little Vincy-Sunshine in their hearts, the world would be a better place.
Richmond Vale

Hitchhiking from Georgetown down to Kingstown by Karolina

Hitchhiking from Georgetown down to Kingstown by Karolina
By Karolina After the fair organized by St. Benedict church, Shie-Shie, Ammon and I decided to stay overnight in Georgetown and hike up the volcano the next day. However, due to bad weather conditions up there we decided to hitchhike instead. The first thing we did in the morning was running to the beach and swimming in the stormy sea. The waves were massive; I am not even kidding you! Ammon was hesitating a bit but I knew we could not miss this chance! Shie-Shie was super scared but did not try to stop us. It was really hard to stay standing when the waves were hitting the shore. After swimming we felt so refreshed. 10:10 we reached the main road and caught a van which speedy brought us all the way down to the capital. It was Sunday morning, so Kingstown was incredibly quiet. We left the city center and tried to get a ride but unfortunately no matter how hard we tried nobody stopped for a while. To begin with, it is not very common to hitchhike in St. Vincent because if you are stopping a car and asking to give you a lift in most of the cases they will ask you to pay. After many failures, Shie-Shie started to show her communication skills. And then one man stopped for us!!! He was...
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5 Effects of Global Warming that will make you think about it! INFOGRAPHIC

5 Effects of Global Warming that will make you think about it! INFOGRAPHIC
The Effects of global warming, the heating of Earth's, oceans and atmosphere, was a topic of debates in the scientific community. Today, the overwhelming consensus of researchers is that the effects of global warming is real thanks to human activity.  This affirmation was supported, as of 2013, by 197 scientific organizations around the globe , which is a stark difference from the levels of awareness in common citizens. Perhaps it is because when thinking about global warming, humans do not see themselves experimenting it now. However, they look at projections for what the world could become if global warming prevails. The truth is, climatic change is not a storm in the making ⎯the downpour has already reached everywhere around the world. Researches about Global Warming According to a Yale University study based on data collected by Gallup in the 2007-2008 period, “about 40 percent of adults worldwide have never heard of climate change. This rises to more than 65 percent in some developing countries, like Egypt, Bangladesh and India” . While this is understandable in developing countries ⎯where people often lack a formal education⎯ it results puzzling in those belonging to the developed world, like the United States. Another study by Yale found that, in 2015 , “fewer than 2 in 5 churchgoing Catholics heard about it from their priest in the month after it was...
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5 Awesome ideas for reusing and recycling water!

5 Awesome ideas for reusing and recycling water!
Around the globe, people are working hard to protect natural resources before their depletion. People today are ‘going green’ to protect their land and to prove themselves as good citizens. Some think that the natural resources need not to be protected but increased pollution in rivers, streams and lakes has become a great danger for life. Other than that, due to increased population, the consumption of water has increased greatly. Therefore, it is very essential to protect water resources and to maintain the balance in the ecosystems. That's why you need to learn the benefist of reusing and recycling water. What are the Environmental Benefits of Water Recycling? In addition to providing a dependable, locally-controlled water supply, water recycling provides tremendous environmental benefits. Some of them are: #1- Decreases the Diversion of Freshwater from Sensitive Ecosystems Plants, wildlife, and fish depend on sufficient water flows in their habitats to live and reproduce. The lack of adequate flow, as a result of diversion for agricultural, urban, and industrial purposes, can cause deterioration of water quality and ecosystem health. People who reuse water can supplement their demands by using a reliable source of recycled water, which can free considerable amounts of water for the environment and increase flows to vital ecosystems. #2- It May Be Used to Create or Enhance Wetlands and Freshwater Habitats. Wetlands provide many benefits, which...
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