The Avalanche – Nigerian National Anthem (Redefined)


As Nigeria marked their 53rd Independence, the group know as The Avalanche which is the official choir of The Commonwealth Of Zion Assembly dropped their redefined version of the Nigerian National Anthem. I like the way they came in, as they redefined the anthem in a beautiful way. . . What more can i say, than you need to give it a try.



Study Finds Wives Often Struggle With Stepchildren Over Caregiving. By JAN HOFFMAN

Her husband’s dementia worsens. Bills are piling up, and knotty daily and long-term decisions must be confronted. The wife is exhausted, overwhelmed, lonely. She needs support from the family. So she turns to the adult children — his, from a previous marriage.

But will they help or make the situation more difficult?

Every year, nearly a half-million adults over age 65 remarry, and a growing proportion of these spouses — usually the wives — eventually will become primary caregivers. Many will look for aid from those with whom their ties may not be particularly strong: their partners’ adult children. New research suggests the caregivers may be in for bitter disappointment.

“They refuse to accept the diagnosis. They think it’s a plot so he can quit working so he doesn’t have to send them money. He’s an old man, and they are
all adults. They insist he isn’t sick. They don’t know, they don’t ask, they don’t care.”

— A research participant interviewed by Carey Wexler Sherman

A study published this month in The Journal of Marriage and Family examined sources of support for late-life wives whose husbands had a dementia-related disease. The researchers found that nearly half of the people whom the women felt had a negative impact on their caregiving were the husband’s relatives — most prominently, his adult children. Generally, these women felt that their stepfamilies created conflict or that their support was minimal or nonexistent.

Research has already shown that dementia caregiving for intact families is demanding, intensive and isolating. This study underscored that remarried caregivers face additional challenges.

“One woman told me, ‘I called a family meeting to discuss how to manage things, but no one showed up,’” said Carey Wexler Sherman, the lead author and a research investigator at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan.

The family meeting is often urged by social workers, Dr. Sherman added, “but it simply doesn’t fit these situations.”

Dr. Sherman and her colleagues extensively interviewed 61 women who were the primary caregivers for their failing husbands, asking them to sort out which relationships were most and least helpful among friends, professionals and family. The women were largely in their 60s and 70s, though their ages ranged from 45 to 87. They were still living in their homes with their husbands, for whom they had round-the-clock oversight.

“These women have unique vulnerabilities,” Dr. Sherman said. “I know adult stepchildren who step up in every sense of the word, but for most of these women, disagreements with stepchildren was the most stressful aspect of providing care for the husband.”

“She says to me, ‘He shouldn’t be left alone anymore.’ But I’m with him 24 hours a day and I can’t keep up. I get a lot of advice but no solutions. No offers of help. No solutions. It’s just, ‘You should do this.’”

— Another participant

For many of the women, the interviews were cathartic, she said. They were giving voice to buried feelings, and were startled and relieved to know that they were not alone in their experiences.

Some women were being sued by stepchildren who felt money was being misspent. There were disputes about who should be in charge. Some adult stepchildren, perhaps long estranged from their fathers in the aftermath of the previous marriage, simply turned their backs.

In Dr. Sherman’s study, “negative networks” of such relationships were significantly associated with increased burdens on the wives, exacerbating their stress and depression.

“These were not women who co-parented these adults,” Dr. Sherman said. “They came relatively later. I was still surprised that more people were not involved out of obligation to their fathers. But they may have thought, ‘She’s there, so I don’t need to be.’”

Deborah Carr, professor of sociology department at Rutgers University, said that when parents divorce, fathers generally have far less contact with children than mothers.

“Before he remarried, he may have already had a strained or cool relationship with his children,” Dr. Carr said. “So if the caregiving wife wants help from them, they may not have had a rosy relationship with him to begin with.”

A more benign interpretation, she suggested, was mismatched life cycles. If the wife is in her mid- 60s, the adult stepchildren may be in their late 30s and early 40s. “Those are their peak child care and work years, and they have competing demands,” said Dr. Carr, an editor of a special section in the journal in which this study appeared, called “Stepfamilies in Later Life.”

“He doesn’t care about helping, but looking after his father’s money is important to him.”

— Another participant

The results were not completely stark. Fifteen women felt that their relationships with their stepfamilies were working. Some even framed the new reality with their husbands as a time of healing between their stepchildren and them, or between the father and his children.

The women often did find positive emotional and practical support elsewhere. In descending order, they cited their friends, professionals, their relatives (like siblings), then the adult stepchildren, and finally, their own children.

Armed with these insights, Dr. Sherman said, professionals could tailor interventions to meet the needs of these women. “Doctors typically ask the caregiver, ‘Do you have children nearby?’ But then they don’t ask, ‘Are these people you can rely on?’”

The researchers are aware that the study reflects one point of view, the caregiver of a loved one who is slowly being erased before her eyes.

Now, Dr. Sherman has started to study these kinds of cases from the perspective of the adult stepchildren.

Written by JAN HOFFMAN.

Desanya: ‘Aye o le’ (Sax Version) Feat. Kenny Kore

{MUSIC} Saxophonist Desanya releases ‘Aye o le’ (Sax Version) Feat. Kenny Kore {DOWNLOAD}


Desanya, the saxophonist performed the melodious saxophone instrumentals with support from Kenny K’ore who speaks in tongues and also voices some parts of the popular song from Infinity’s groundbreaking ‘Olori-oko’ album.

According to the unassuming Desanya, the collaboration came about while he was worshiping one morning and the Holy Spirit ministered the title of the song to him. He immediately reached out to Kore (formerly of Infinity) and that was it. The song was produced by Joshua of Hilltop studios.

Desanya began his foray into the world of music at the tender age of ten, serving as the church pianist at the RCCG parish where he worshipped before he was 16. During this period, he developed a strong passion for the saxophone, which is now his major instrument, though he also plays the guitar and talking drum.

As a born-again Christian, he identifies God as the source of his inspiration. And with his saxophone, he has been able to define his own unique style of afro centric music, that is a blend of traditional sounds and contemporary rhythm, which never fails to inspire his audience anywhere he performs.

His talent and prowess on the saxophone has taken him to various concerts, churches, weddings and other events. He has also played as backup for the popular ace saxophonist, Segun Oluwayomi.


Millions of Poor People Are Left Uncovered by Health Law

A sweeping national effort to extend health coverage to millions of Americans will leave out two-thirds of the poor blacks and single mothers and more than half of the low-wage workers who do not have insurance, the very kinds of people that the program was intended to help, according to an analysis of census data by The New York Times.

Because they live in states largely controlled by Republicans that have declined to participate in a vast expansion of Medicaid, the medical insurance program for the poor, they are among the eight million Americans who are impoverished, uninsured and ineligible for help. The federal government will pay for the expansion through 2016 and no less than 90 percent of costs in later years.

Those excluded will be stranded without insurance, stuck between people with slightly higher incomes who will qualify for federal subsidies on the new health exchanges that went live this week, and those who are poor enough to qualify for Medicaid in its current form, which has income ceilings as low as $11 a day in some states.

People shopping for insurance on the health exchanges are already discovering this bitter twist.

“How can somebody in poverty not be eligible for subsidies?” an unemployed health care worker in Virginia asked through tears. The woman, who identified herself only as Robin L. because she does not want potential employers to know she is down on her luck, thought she had run into a computer problem when she went online Tuesday and learned she would not qualify.

At 55, she has high blood pressure, and she had been waiting for the law to take effect so she could get coverage. Before she lost her job and her house and had to move in with her brother in Virginia, she lived in Maryland, a state that is expanding Medicaid. “Would I go back there?” she asked. “It might involve me living in my car. I don’t know. I might consider it.”

The 26 states that have rejected the Medicaid expansion are home to about half of the country’s population, but about 68 percent of poor, uninsured blacks and single mothers. About 60 percent of the country’s uninsured working poor are in those states. Among those excluded are about 435,000 cashiers, 341,000 cooks and 253,000 nurses’ aides.

“The irony is that these states that are rejecting Medicaid expansion — many of them Southern — are the very places where the concentration of poverty and lack of health insurance are the most acute,” said Dr. H. Jack Geiger, a founder of the community health center model. “It is their populations that have the highest burden of illness and costs to the entire health care system.”

The disproportionate impact on poor blacks introduces the prickly issue of race into the already politically charged atmosphere around the health care law. Race was rarely, if ever, mentioned in the state-level debates about the Medicaid expansion. But the issue courses just below the surface, civil rights leaders say, pointing to the pattern of exclusion.

Every state in the Deep South, with the exception of Arkansas, has rejected the expansion. Opponents of the expansion say they are against it on exclusively economic grounds, and that the demographics of the South — with its large share of poor blacks — make it easy to say race is an issue when it is not.

In Mississippi, Republican leaders note that a large share of people in the state are on Medicaid already, and that, with an expansion, about a third of the state would have been insured through the program. Even supporters of the health law say that eventually covering 10 percent of that cost would have been onerous for a predominantly rural state with a modest tax base.

“Any additional cost in Medicaid is going to be too much,” said State Senator Chris McDaniel, a Republican, who opposes expansion.

The law was written to require all Americans to have health coverage. For lower and middle-income earners, there are subsidies on the new health exchanges to help them afford insurance. An expanded Medicaid program was intended to cover the poorest. In all, about 30 million uninsured Americans were to have become eligible for financial help.

But the Supreme Court’s ruling on the health care law last year, while upholding it, allowed states to choose whether to expand Medicaid. Those that opted not to leave about eight million uninsured people who live in poverty ($19,530 for a family of three) without any assistance at all.

Poor people excluded from the Medicaid expansion will not be subject to fines for lacking coverage. In all, about 14 million eligible Americans are uninsured and living in poverty, the Times analysis found.

The federal government provided the tally of how many states were not expanding Medicaid for the first time on Tuesday. It included states like New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee that might still decide to expand Medicaid before coverage takes effect in January. If those states go forward, the number would change, but the trends that emerged in the analysis would be similar.

Mississippi has the largest percentage of poor and uninsured people in the country — 13 percent. Willie Charles Carter, an unemployed 53-year-old whose most recent job was as a maintenance worker at a public school, has had problems with his leg since surgery last year.

His income is below Mississippi’s ceiling for Medicaid — which is about $3,000 a year — but he has no dependent children, so he does not qualify. And his income is too low to make him eligible for subsidies on the federal health exchange.

“You got to be almost dead before you can get Medicaid in Mississippi,” he said.

He does not know what he will do when the clinic where he goes for medical care, the Good Samaritan Health Centerin Greenville, closes next month because of lack of funding.

“I’m scared all the time,” he said. “I just walk around here with faith in God to take care of me.”

The states that did not expand Medicaid have less generous safety nets: For adults with children, the median income limit for Medicaid is just under half of the federal poverty level — or about $5,600 a year for an individual — while in states that are expanding, it is above the poverty line, or about $12,200, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.There is little or no coverage of childless adults in the states not expanding, Kaiser said.

The New York Times analysis excluded immigrants in the country illegally and those foreign-born residents who would not be eligible for benefits under Medicaid expansion. It included people who are uninsured even though they qualify for Medicaid in its current form.

Blacks are disproportionately affected, largely because more of them are poor and living in Southern states. In all, 6 out of 10 blacks live in the states not expanding Medicaid. In Mississippi, 56 percent of all poor and uninsured adults are black, though they account for just 38 percent of the population.

Dr. Aaron Shirley, a physician who has worked for better health care for blacks in Mississippi, said that the history of segregation and violence against blacks still informs the way people see one another, particularly in the South, making some whites reluctant to support programs that they believe benefit blacks.

That is compounded by the country’s rapidly changing demographics, Dr. Geiger said, in which minorities will eventually become a majority, a pattern that has produced a profound cultural unease, particularly when it has collided with economic insecurity.

Dr. Shirley said: “If you look at the history of Mississippi, politicians have used race to oppose minimum wage, Head Start, all these social programs. It’s a tactic that appeals to people who would rather suffer themselves than see a black person benefit.”

Opponents of the expansion bristled at the suggestion that race had anything to do with their position. State Senator Giles Ward of Mississippi, a Republican, called the idea that race was a factor “preposterous,” and said that with the demographics of the South — large shares of poor people and, in particular, poor blacks — “you can argue pretty much any way you want.”

The decision not to expand Medicaid will also hit the working poor. Claretha Briscoe earns just under $11,000 a year making fried chicken and other fast food at a convenience store in Hollandale, Miss., too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to get subsidies on the new health exchange. She had a heart attack in 2002 that a local hospital treated as part of its charity care program.

“I skip months on my blood pressure pills,” said Ms. Briscoe, 48, who visited the Good Samaritan Health Center last week because she was having chest pains. “I buy them when I can afford them.”

About half of poor and uninsured Hispanics live in states that are expanding Medicaid. But Texas, which has a large Hispanic population, rejected the expansion. Gladys Arbila, a housekeeper in Houston who earns $17,000 a year and supports two children, is under the poverty line and therefore not eligible for new subsidies. But she makes too much to qualify for Medicaid under the state’s rules. She recently spent 36 hours waiting in the emergency room for a searing pain in her back.

“We came to this country, and we are legal and we work really hard,” said Ms. Arbila, 45, who immigrated to the United States 12 years ago, and whose son is a soldier in Afghanistan. “Why we don’t have the same opportunities as the others?”


Singer, Obiora Obiwon announces new album title (Gold Water)


The official countdown has begun to the launch and release of a new album from urban gospel recording artiste and music minister, Obiora Obiwon, his first full set in four years. Obiora Obiwon reflects,  “This particular body work has really taken four years and more to make. Apart from the physical recording, the melodies and lyrics were authored through the joyful but painstaking processes of my life and faith encounters within the period”.
Obiwon marked a season of new beginnings and greater heights earlier this year as he was honoured by the National Gospel Awards as Best Crossover Artist, his first ever award in the genre. He has also graced the cover of the latest edition of Vine Magazine, an entertainment and lifestyle magazine for young positive minds. In his cover interview, Obiwon speaks about his conversion and salvation experience, his humble musical beginnings dating back almost two decades and the challenges of switching over from secular to gospel music. In the midst of an active ministerial schedule, Obiwon also played guest judge at the Owerri Auditions of Destiny Child Gospel Talent Hunt and had his catalogue released this week on Spinlet, Africa’s premiere mobile music platform.


Announcing the album title as “Gold Water”, the passioned singer explained that the admittedly strange title is one that he and listeners would have to unravel over the course of time, as the album hits the stores in November 2013. The 12-track opus features major and exciting collaborations including the HipHop and African Rhythm merger on “F.a.t.h.e.r 2.0 Remix” featuring HipHop artistes Madarocka, Tbos and Recky D. The remix is the B-Side single to the stellar “Testify”, which continues to gain more grounds on all platforms.


The rest of the year promises to be much more exciting as Obiwon continues to unveil plans and activity towards the release and establishment of “Gold Water”.


Obiwon – F.a.t.h.e.r 2.0 Remix + Testify ft. Mike Abdul

At first when i came across this i felt it was all a joke. . . No need because it is crystal clear as Obiwon marked a season of new beginnings and greater heights earlier this year as he was honoured by the National Gospel Awards as Best Crossover Artist, his first ever award in the genre. He has also graced the cover of the latest edition of Vine Magazine, an entertainment and lifestyle magazine for young positive minds.

In his cover interview, Obiwon speaks about his conversion and salvation experience, his humble musical beginnings dating back almost two decades and the challenges of switching over from secular to gospel music. In the midst of an active ministerial schedule, Obiwon also played guest judge at the Owerri Auditions of Destiny Child Gospel Talent Hunt and had his catalogue released this week on Spinlet, Africa’s premiere mobile music platform.

The rest of the year promises to be much more exciting as Obiwon continues to unveil plans and activity towards the release and establishment of “Gold Water”. Now check out his new single F.a.t.h.e.r 2.0 coupled with Testify featuring Mike Abdul.