Recorder letters: Orange waste, Momo safety, Scouts and organ donation

PUBLISHED: 12:00 10 March 2019

Residents get to grips with rubbish.  Picture: ROBERT RUSH

Residents get to grips with rubbish. Picture: ROBERT RUSH

Bob Rush

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Residents chat about recycling

Robert Rush, East Ham, full address supplied, writes:

Thirty keen residents got stuck into rubbish at the meeting held recently of the Monega (Resident’s) Association.

Ruma Jana, of the council’s re-cycling division, was on hand to judge what could and what couldn’t go into their orange bins and bags.

“It was was really good looking at 30 items from our chairman’s waste bag to see what he was getting right, and particularly what he was getting wrong” said one resident.

Cllr Muhammad Ali attended and fielded questions on poor parking along Katherine Road, the filthy state of the streets and on the progress of road re-surfacing.

Cllr Ali joined Ms Jana is saying what a pleasure the evening had been.

Keep children safe online

Lauren Seager-Smith, CEO, Kidscape, writes:

The so-called “Momo challenge” has been making headlines and causing concern for parents. According to news reports, Momo is a creepy doll-like figure which is said to appear in social media, videos and games online.

This is what parents need to know, and what you can do to protect your child:

1. Set age-appropriate boundaries. Children of any age should be very cautious about adding anyone they don’t know to their networks.

2. Have open conversations about online safety, and let your child know they can come to you if they see anything that upsets or worries them.

3. Report any Momo-related content to the platform (e.g. YouTube, Instagram).

4. Teach your child what it means to be assertive and explore saying no to doing things they don’t want to do – whether face to face or online.

5. Get help: our website has advice for families about online safety.

Momo may be frightening to children, in particular younger children. Memes like the Momo challenge draw their power from fear, so make sure your children see that you’re not scared of Momo, and it’s a problem you can solve together.

Scouts help young people

Warwick Davis, actor, cirector and Scout ambassador, writes:

As a proud Scout ambassador I’m always looking for ways to help young people in East London develop the skills they need to succeed.

One of the most essential of these is active listening. Today, according to new YouGov research, 86 per cent of UK adults who had a view said we don’t listen to each other enough in UK society. That needs to change.

In my profession, on the set of a Hollywood movie, if actors don’t listen to each other, the scene doesn’t work. The same applies in real life – it’s about taking the time to understand different points of view and showing respect.

Scouts in east London are leading the way in this area. More than 90pc of UK adults say that the Scouts are helping young people to develop this important skill by working together with different kinds of people in small teams.

When young people learn listening skills, it encourages them to develop empathy and understand more about the needs of others. So whether you’re an adult looking for a great volunteering opportunity this year, or a young person looking to develop your skills, then visit to find out how to get involved.

Donate organs to save lives

Dr John Chisholm, medical ethics committee chairman, British Medical Association (BMA), writes:

Organ donation saves lives and while the recent move towards a soft-opt is a very positive step in maximising donation for adult patients, it is very welcome to see that the health secretary has given his support to this important campaign which focuses on improving organ donation rates for children.

Babies and children are currently dying because there are not enough donations to carry out lifesaving transplants. The more time passes without any meaningful change, the more we risk losing young lives.

Greater awareness of the options available and discussions among families are a vital part of informing this important shift, so that organ donation is seen as the normal thing to do. It is, however, essential that any such communication takes account of the incredibly difficult situation that a family is faced with when a child has died. At such a vulnerable and devastating time, this communication must be carried out by trained and dedicated staff who understand the complex and sensitive nature of such a decision.

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