Experts propose steps to ease food safety info flow

first_img The study was produced by the Food Safety Research Consortium (FSRC), a group of university-based research institutions, based at the University of Florida in Gainesville, that is working on initiatives to improve the nation’s food safety system. The group’s projects include the development of analytical and decision tools to help guide interventions and resource allocation. The new report was funded by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Assess the costs and benefits of proposed changes The report lists several examples of shortcomings in the food safety information system. It says that government and industry lack research plans on how to address contamination in produce and that planning for the FoodNet system, which collects foodborne illness data, has not involved food-industry risk managers. Analyzing information gaps May 22, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – A team of food safety researchers, flanked by federal, state, and industry officials, today unveiled a sweeping report on how food safety information is shared and called for new federal policies to make the system more transparent and useful. “For all actors in the food safety system—public and private—the effectiveness of what they do depends on the quality of the information they have on potential hazards and how to minimize them,” the FSRC noted in the report’s introduction. Authors of the report are Michael Taylor, professor of health policy at George Washington University, and Michael Batz, executive director of the FSRC and head of food safety programs at the University of Florida’s Emerging Pathogens Institute in Gainesville. Prioritizing information needs Establishing a gateway Web site that could connect the network of food safety databases If government agencies and the food industry could somehow pool their data on chemical and microbial contamination, “this data would provide a much more robust picture of the nature and distribution of hazards across the food supply than we have today,” the authors wrote. To support more information sharing, stakeholders need incentives and the federal government should take a lead role to establish policy changes, Taylor and Batz asserted. Though some federal legislative proposals call for putting all federal food safety functions in one agency, the authors said their suggestions don’t depend on that reform measure, because such unification wouldn’t solve all of the information-sharing problems. “The need for improvement extends well beyond federal agencies,” they wrote. Taylor and Batz concluded that though there are no quick cure-alls for improving the flow of food safety information, they are buoyed by stakeholders’ high interest in removing some of the roadblocks. Taylor and Batz based their evaluation of the nation’s food safety information systems on the results of four workshops that were attended by public health and food safety experts, government officials, industry representatives, researchers, and consumers. “We believe that lasting solutions must respect these institutional realities and must include mechanisms that facilitate diverse institutions working together in new ways,” they wrote. Seek regular input from all food safety participants Identify legislative changes needed to ease the flow of information The report suggests establishing a food safety information system council, housed in the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), composed of senior food safety officials from key federal agencies and state and local departments. With a budget of $25 million the council would: See also: Launching a food safety epidemiology user group to ensure that data from publicly funded epidemiology efforts are accessible and timely Prioritize, plan, and coordinate actions to improve the collection and flow of food safety information Compiling a database of past and future food safety research activities However, Taylor and Batz wrote that much of the food safety information system is in “stove pipes” that are isolated and inaccessible to other users. They attribute the fragmentation to a variety of causes, including regulatory constraints, intellectual property concerns, and a variety of funding sources. They also found that food safety agencies are overburdened with competing priorities and responsibilities. Food Safety Research Consortium report on improving the nation’s food safety information infrastructure Easing access to industry food safety information Increasing access to information from publicly funded food safety research In addition, the report calls for a food safety information system stakeholder forum that would advise the new council and help implement new initiatives such as: More effective communication between food safety groups is need to ensure safety and reduce risks, since food production and distribution over the past decades have become increasingly complex, the authors wrote. At the same time, technology for collecting, managing, and sharing data has also advanced and has the potential to improve food safety, they said. Report annually to Congress The 129-page report, Harnessing Knowledge to Ensure Food Safety: Opportunities to Improve the Nation’s Food Safety Information Infrastructure, was released at a briefing at George Washington University in Washington, DC, and is available on the group’s Web site.last_img read more

National COVID-19 task force chief Doni Monardo volunteers for COVID-19 vaccine trial

first_imgNational COVID-19 task force chief Doni Monardo has signed up to become a volunteer for the COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials, task force spokesperson Wiku Adisasmito announced on Thursday.“We would like to announce that the National COVID-19 task force chief Doni Monardo has registered for the clinical trials of the potential COVID-19 vaccine,” Wiku said during a press conference on Thursday. “This is part of the government’s commitment to provide the maximum protection for citizens against the danger of COVID-19.”Wiku said that the government was optimistic about the vaccine development in the country, referring to the phase III clinical trials of a potential COVID-19 vaccine developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac Biotech in partnership with state-owned pharmaceutical PT Bio Farma. Topics : The trials started on Monday in Bandung, West Java, with 120 out of 1,620 volunteers scheduled to receive injections by the end of the week.West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil has also announced that he will volunteer in the vaccine’s clinical trials.Ridwan said that the West Java Police chief Insp. Gen. Rudy Sufahriadi and Siliwangi Military commander Maj. Gen. Nugroho Budi Wiryanto had also volunteered for the trials.last_img read more

Cricket News ICC ODI Rankings: Chahal enters Top 10, Bumrah’s new high, Virat Kohli’s masterclass – Get Full List HERE

first_imgNew Delhi: Indian leggie Yuzvendra Chahal broke into the top-10 bowlers list of the latest ICC rankings, while opener Shikhar Dhawan slipped four places in the batsmen list after a torrid home series against West Indies. Indian skipper Virat Kohli, who bagged a staggering 453 runs in the ODI series against the Windies and completed his 10,000 ODI runs, retained his position as the top-ranked batsman in the world.Kohli earned 15 points, which took his points tally to 899, 28 ahead of his second-ranked team mate and deputy Rohit Sharma, who collected 29 points after a brilliant home series against Windies in which he scored 389 runs. Rohit’s point tally of 871 is his highest to-date.Dhawan, who didn’t even score a half century in the five-match series against the Windies, has slipped four places to be ninth.In the bowler’s list, Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja and Sri Lanka’s Akila Dananjaya made huge strides, with No.1 ranked Jasprit Bumrah achieving a career-high of 841 points, which is the highest since Shaun Pollock’s 894 in 2008.Meanwhile, Kuldeep Yadav also hit a career-high points of 723, while his team mate Chahal broke it into the top 10 for the first time in his career by rising three places to eighth. While, Jadeja has climbed 16 places to move to 25th spot after notching seven wickets.ALSO READ: Monkeygate incident behind downfall in international cricket: SymondsFor Windies, talismanic duo of Shai Hope and Shimron Hetmeyer are the biggest gainer in the batsmen rankings. The duo are having their best career rankings and are separated by only nine points.However, England are the numero uno side, with India being the second. The Men in Blue trail England by five points and lead the third-ranked New Zealand by nine points.ICC ODI BATSMEN RANKINGS:1 Virat Kohli      IND    8992 Rohit Sharma IND  8713 Joe Root        ENG  8074 David Warner AUS    8035 Babar Azam    PAK    7986 Ross Taylor NZ      7857 Kane Williamson NZ   7788 Quinton de Kock SA   7699 Shikhar Dhawan IND 76710 du Plessis     SA 753ICC ODI BOWLERS RANKING1 Jasprit Bumrah IND  8412 Rashid Khan AFG   7883 Kuldeep Yadav IND 7234 Trent Boult NZ   6995 Josh Hazlewood AUS 6966 Kagiso Rabada SA    6917 Imran Tahir SA    6858 Yuzvendra Chahal IND 6839 Adil Rashid     ENG 68310 Hasan Ali         PAK 681 For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

How Montrezl Harrell helped the Clippers overcome OKC

first_imgMontrezl Harrell was as eye-catching on the court Monday as he is off it, where you can’t ever miss him in the bold self-stylings he’s described as a hippie-, rock star-type look.As even the professional scorers around him were slogging it out in the Clippers’ 90-88 victory at Staples Center, Harrell might’ve been wearing his bright “Rugrats” TV show-inspired sweatsuit out there, he was that conspicuous.And that in character.“Trezz just does a good job of doing his job,” veteran guard Lou Williams said. “He screens, he rolls, puts himself in position to be successful.” Clippers vs. Mavericks Game 5 playoff updates from NBA beat reporters Kristaps Porzingis ruled out as Clippers, Mavericks set for Game 5; Follow for game updates DYNAMIC DUO IN-WAITINGThe Clippers continue to await the opportunity to debut Kawhi Leonard and George beside each other for the first time. As of Tuesday evening, Leonard was listed as questionable for Wednesday’s game against the Boston Celtics (7 p.m., ESPN), the Clippers’ third game of a five-game homestand.Leonard has missed five of the Clippers’ 14 games so far, either because of a load-management strategy meant to ease stress on an ongoing injury to the patella tendon in his left knee or recently, on account of a left knee contusion.Before Monday’s game, Clippers coach Doc Rivers said the Clippers don’t harbor any long-term concerns about Leonard’s injury, noting the two-time NBA Finals MVP had been “very close” to playing against Oklahoma City and could play against the Celtics, who are 11-2 and in first place in the Eastern Conference.Related Articles Clippers hope they can play to their capabilities, quell Mavericks’ momentum Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “He’s skilled – I mean, he’s skilled,” George said. “Great hands. Plays bigger than what he is. He contests, he takes charges. He brings the toughness, great finisher. He’s got the complete package and he’s got a niche for this league. He’s definitely got a niche and he knows his game.“Those are guys that do well, they know what they do and they do it at a high level.” With Leonard, the Clippers are 7-2. Without him, they’re 2-3, and it’s worth noting both of their Leonard-less wins came after George returned after concluding rehab from offseason surgery on both shoulders.After being facing double-teams all game on Monday, George said he’ll welcome Leonard’s presence, whenever he’s able to provide it.“You can’t shrink the floor when you got me, Lou, Kawhi, Trezz, you just can’t shrink the floor,” George said. “There is no way that guys can take themselves out of the play defensively and try to face-guard. You just can’t do that, because Lou, Kawhi or myself, whoever is getting that type of defense, we are going to pick you apart and make plays offensively.” What the Clippers are saying the day after Luka Doncic’s game-winner tied series, 2-2 This is how Harrell, the 25-year-old Virginian, defined successful this time.By carrying the offensive load: He took 20 of the Clippers’ 87 shots and scored 13 of their 35 baskets. All of his buckets came at the rim, many off screen-and-rolls that resulted in rim-rattling dunks as the 6-foot-7 Harrell used his speed and savvy to evade Steven Adams, the Thunder’s sturdy 7-footer.By imposing his will on a back-and-forth fourth quarter: Harrell played all 12 minutes and had 14 points, seven rebounds (including five on the offensive glass), two assists, a steal and a blocked shot.By making some NBA history: Harrell finished with 28 points, 12 rebounds and five assists – becoming just the eighth player ever to post that line off the bench, and the only one to do it in fewer than 33 minutes.Paul George followed his 37-point and 33-point debut outings by scoring 18 on Monday, when he delivered the game-sealing 3-pointer and, a little later, an astute scouting report on his new teammate “Trezz.” For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory last_img read more

Funds available to pay dismissed Wales sugar workers – Holder

first_img– as court ruling remains pending; matter to be heard today – GAWUWhile thousands of dismissed workers across the sugar belt were paid the final tranche of their severance payments, ex-Wales Sugar Estate workers are yet to receive their legally entitled benefits, as the matter is still before the court.Wales Sugar EstateHowever, Agriculture Minister Noel Holder is insisting that Government is ready to pay the workers, noting that the funds are available.“I spoke to GuySuCo (Guyana Sugar Corporation) and they said that unlike the others with the straightforward supplementary, that case is before the court. We have the money to pay, and if the court case with the workers and the union is done this week, they can get paid by weekend…we are ready,” Holder told this publication on Monday.GAWU President, Komal ChandHis comments came in response to a story carried in this newspaper wherein it was revealed that over 350 workers who had been attached to the Wales Sugar Estate were not paid their severance. These workers are involved in a court case wherein they contend that their employer, GuySuCo, was acting unlawfully by compelling them to travel 22 miles from their point of origin to Uitvlugt on the West Coast of Demerara.According to President of the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU), Komal Chand, the court case is scheduled to be heard before Justice Sandil Kissoon today (Tuesday). It was in early November that the National Assembly gave approval for almost $2.5 billion to cater for the remaining severance payments to 4,723 sugar workers.Earlier this year, Government opted to pay some workers half of their severance, with the remaining half to be paid in the latter part of the year. It was last Friday that the majority of payments were made. During last week, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo gave all assurances that the Wales workers who were previously prevented from receiving severance pay by the GAWU-filed court case would receive their outstanding benefits.Agriculture Minister Noel HolderA report by Government agency the Department of Public Information (DPI) claimed that many former workers benefited from alternative livelihood programmes designed to equip them with skills to seek employment in different areas such as sewing, cosmetology, caring for the elderly, catering, mechanical and electrical works, and small business management. This was in contrast to what Guyana Times has been reporting over the last two years — that many of these very workers are finding great difficulty is obtaining consistent and well-paying employment. In December 2016, Wales was the first Estate that was closed in the current era of Governmental rule. Other Estates closed were Skeldon, Enmore and Rose Hall, all of which were re-opened under small operations as GuySuCo eyes local, regional and international investors to manage the entities.last_img read more

Saving South Africa’s wildlife

first_imgIn 1973 Clive Walker, James Clarke and Neville Anderson established the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT), dedicated to conserving endangered species and restoring the delicate balance in southern Africa’s ecosystems.The organisation has, since then, played a major role in conserving many of Africa’s unique species.Droughts, floods, poachers and predators make survival for Africa’s wild animals a difficult affair and a growing human population encroaching on their habitats is driving many species to near extinction“We as human beings rely heavily on biodiversity and healthy ecosystems and without them we jeopardise our own wellbeing,” says Nomonde Mxhalisa, communications manager for the Endangered Wildlife Trust.“People around the world can no longer ignore the fact that the environment in which we live underpins every single human need.”The EWT has worked to bring issues of conservation to the fore in terms of issues in the way of social and economic development.THE THREATDroughts, floods, poachers and predators make survival for Africa’s wild animals a difficult affair and a growing human population encroaching on their habitats is driving many species to near extinction.The quagga, which used to be a subspecies of the plains zebra or common zebra, once roamed the African landscape in large numbers. But the animal was hunted to extinction in the 1880s, when the last quagga died at the Amsterdam Zoo.Other indigenous African species such as the African wild dog and the black and white rhinoceros face the same fate. To preserve these animals, the EWT has created a number of programmes targeting threats such as poaching, deforestation, disease, traditional migration route interference, and mitigating the impact that human involvement is having on their habitats.The Riverine Rabbit or Vleihaas is South Africa’s second most endangered animal after the De Winton’s Golden Mole. Pictured above is a juvenile Riverine Rabbit. (image: Endangered Wildlife Trust)PROJECTSMost animals are suited to very limited environments; humans however can adapt environments to suit their needs, and with a growing human population needing food and other resources, natural areas are getting smaller and smaller. Animals that lose their habitats often can’t survive this encroachment and can eventually go extinct. Recognising that humans and animals need to share environments the EWT works on programmes to teach communities, like farmers, how to run their farms without driving the animals out.The Wildlife Conflict Mitigation Programme, involving the Livestock Guarding Dog Project aims to reduce this kind of human/animal conflict.“We often deal with a great deal of human/wildlife conflict particularly when it comes to our work with carnivores,” Mxhalisa explains.“We have solved these issues however by introducing mitigation measures such as the livestock guarding dogs that we encourage farmers to use to ward against their livestock being eaten by various carnivores.”The Livestock Guarding Dog Project encourages farmers to use guard dogs to drive predators away, instead of shooting the animals or poisoning them (images: Endangered Wildlife Trust)Livestock farmers need to protect their domestic animals; but these animals are easy prey for carnivores such as lions, leopards, hyenas, wildcats and the now endangered African wild dog and cheetah. The programme encourages farmers to use guard dogs to drive predators away, instead of shooting the animals or poisoning them.The Livestock Guarding Dog Project has, since it was taken over by the EWT in 2008, helped farmers reduce their annual losses from an average of R3.4-million, to about R150 000.“. . . The work we do is literally bringing amazing creatures back from the brink of extinction and that means we’ve bought more time for all people to enjoy these species and to continue to reap the benefits of living in ecosystems that are healthy and thriving,” says Mxhalisa.“Many of the EWT’s staff live and breathe care for the environment.“Many of us are idealists who want to make a difference, to leave a real and positive mark on the world. We believe the work is important and the results and successes we have keep us pushing forward.”Another project, the African Crane Conservation Programme, in partnership with the International Crane Foundation, helps to ensure the sustainability of wetland, grassland and Karoo ecosystems that crane species such as the Blue Crane, South Africa’s national bird, depend on.PLAY YOUR PART“You can make a difference to the environment simply by not littering, not wasting water or electricity, disposing of rubbish and oil correctly and spreading the word that you are forever linked to your environment and without it we will suffer,” says Mxhalisa.The EWT also regularly holds talks “about biodiversity and conservation at the Country Club Johannesburg and events that commemorate the various wildlife and biodiversity days that take place during the year”.Along with individual action, the EWT needs funds to manage and run its programmes; it accepts corporate sponsorships and private donations. Corporate sponsors can contact Debbie Thiart on debbiet@ewt.org.za or call her on +27 (0) 11 372 3600.For more information on the organisation’s programmes and lectures, or how to donate, visit its website or call +27 (0) 11 372 3600/1/2/3.last_img read more

Customer Service Tips for Early Stage Startups

first_imgdana oshiro A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Few companies put as much effort into customer service as they do into member acquisition. However, in order to retain members, community-driven startups need to be conscious of the entire customer experience. No stranger to support techniques, Zendesk CEO Mikkel Svane spends most of his time perfecting the end-user experience for his clients. Best known for its web-based help desk services, Zendesk launched in 2008 and even then ReadWriteWeb gave the company a favorable review. In 2009, Zendesk continues to establish itself as a great alternative to the traditional call center experience. Svane offers some helpful tips for our ReadWriteStart readers. Says Svane, “The good news for businesses starting out today is that the web offers a whole host of easy, affordable tools that can help to ensure businesses have a meaningful dialogue [with their customers].” Some of those tools include: 1. Web-hosted Solutions: Rather than investing in an in-house legacy customer support service, Svane advises startups to consider a web-based help desk product to eliminate any headaches associated with security, scalability, and ongoing maintenance. Says Svane, “Keep the human touch in-house but outsource the infrastructure.” In addition to Zendesk, companies can look at services like Openbravo for web-based support. 2. Crowdsource Solutions: In addition to a Frequently Asked Questions page, consider incorporating a discussion forum or dialogue tool into your website. These tools allow customers with questions to interact with your best advocates. In addition to Zendesk’s forum tool, companies can also look to Get Satisfaction, FixYa or Lefora for help. 3. Social Media: When your customers or ex-customers are going to complain about your company, they’ll often do it via Twitter or Facebook. Take advantage of these tools and use them to keep a positive conversation going. Having a dedicated staff person that interacts with customers to answer their urgent questions on Twitter shows how responsive and committed a company is to its customers. Related Posts Tags:#start#startups center_img 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostinglast_img read more

Hakimi agent not ruling out permanent Dortmund switch

first_imgAchraf Hakimi has not ruled out the possibility of making his loan from Real Madrid to Borussia Dortmund permanent, according to the player’s agent.The Bundesliga club’s CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke said earlier this week he wanted to do a deal for the 20-year-old left-back after securing another loanee – striker Paco Alcacer – outright from Barcelona.And Morocco international Hakimi, who is on a two-year loan from the Bernabeu giants, is enjoying life in Germany. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! His agent Alejandro Camano told Goal and SPOX: “Borussia Dortmund is an amazing club and already feels like home for Achraf. “He feels really comfortable and is enjoying his time.”After Watzke celebrated securing Alcacer, he stated his intention of doing the same with Hakimi.”Dear Paco Alcacer, welcome to Borussia Dortmund,” he said.”And Achraf Hakimi – we will try to do the same thing with you, even though it will not be easy.”Alcacer’s loan deal had a clause for the option of a permanent deal written into it, and although Hakimi’s does not, Camano says Hakimi is grateful to able to stake his claim in Dortmund.”We will see what the future brings,” he added. “We don’t think about Real Madrid.”The deal between the clubs did not change and there were no talks with Real since he left them.”We are thankful to Dortmund for the chance that Achraf can play at the highest level in an amazing league like the Bundesliga. Only that counts.”Hakimi has made eight appearances in table-topping Dortmund’s unbeaten start to the Bundesliga season and has played twice in the Champions League, after making just nine league appearances for Madrid in 2017-18 under former coach Zinedine Zidane.Six assists in that time have raised his stock, though without an option to sign the full-back at the end of his loan spell, Dortmund may need to pay out a sizeable figure.last_img read more

People across the globe get in the way of animal movements study

first_imgA global study shows animals are moving distances two to three times shorter in areas disturbed by humans than in the wilderness.The study, which is to be published Friday in the journal Science, brought together GPS data on 803 animals from 57 different mammal species on six continents and compared it with a human footprint index.It involved a total of 114 scientists — including some who study wildlife in Western Canada — who used an animal-tracking database to archive material.One of those scientists, Mark Hebblewhite, said the study brings information together to make the big-picture conclusion that animals are changing their day-to-day and migratory movements because of people.“We’ve got elephants. We’ve got bushy-tailed opossums, and animals in Barro Colorado Island in Panama,” said Hebblewhite, a professor of wildlife biology at the University of Montana. “Yet, across all of these different species, the overwhelming effect of human activity is to reduce their movements.”Another co-author, Adam Ford, said it’s concerning that animals are moving less in areas disturbed by humans.“What makes animals unique and special is that they move,” said Ford, an assistant professor in biology at the University of British Columbia Okanagan. “They need to move to get food. They need to move to get shelter and to find mates.”He pointed to research by Hebblewhite that shows wolves couldn’t get to parts of the Bow Valley in Alberta, which changed the entire ecosystem in the area.“Those barriers to movement were caused by people, even in an area such as Banff National Park,” said Ford.Hebblewhite and Evelyn Merrill, a professor of biological science at the University of Alberta, have been studying wolves and elk in and around the national park since 2001.They’ve had similar findings in research on elk in Alberta and B.C.“The road networks, highway fragmentation, dams, reservoirs, fences — all of these things — are making it more difficult to migrate in the first place,” said Hebblewhite.“The second thing we’re doing is supplementing them with food,” he said pointing to animals on golf courses.Hebblewhite said lower population numbers result when animals move less.“Studies have shown that if the Serengeti wildebeests didn’t migrate, there would be 50,000 to 100,000 of them instead of 1.5 million,” he said.Work on elk has had similar results.“Twenty years ago, 90 per cent of the population was migratory; 20 years ago, there were 2,000 elk,” said Hebblewhite. “Now, 30 to 40 per cent of the population is migratory and we have 500 elk.”Fewer elk means less food for hunters and predators such as wolves and grizzly bears.“The loss of elk are leading to declining wolf and grizzly bear populations in places like Banff.”Merrill, also a co-author on the study, said the latest results support earlier findings.“The fact we can do this at the global scale now is really the significance of this paper,” she said. “It reinforces that what we are finding at the small scale is happening more globally.”All of the researchers said the paper is important because it shows the importance of wildlife to be able to move freely.“Our efforts in terms of conservation are important,” said Merrill. “It’s important not only for the persistence of the species, but also for the role in the ecosystem that they play.”last_img read more

Wiggles pay surprise visit to NL school choir then invite them on

first_imgST. JOHN’S, N.L. – A star-struck high school choir dissolved into screams of joy when children’s musical super group the Wiggles stopped by their rehearsal — and then invited the teens to join them on stage.The Holy Heart of Mary high school choir in St. John’s had recorded a video performing a Wiggles song, inviting the Australian icons to visit their rehearsal before their performance Tuesday at the Holy Heart Theatre.The Wiggles members commented on the Instagram post, and choral director Robert Colbourne reached out to management formally inviting the group, but hadn’t heard back by the time Tuesday rolled around.“I was starting to lose out hope that our little goal of getting the Wiggles to come to our rehearsal wasn’t going to happen,” Colbourne said Thursday.Colbourne told the kids to wear the group’s signature block colours to rehearsal, just in case.The students and their teacher were floored when the Wiggles trotted in unannounced and listened to the teens perform Newfoundland songs.After posing for a photo with the excited students, blue Wiggle Anthony Field asked Colbourne if the kids would like to perform on stage with them.“I was shocked. Are you serious? These kids are going to lose their minds,” Colbourne recalled.Colbourne captured the heartwarming moment he told the students about the Wiggles’ invitation in a 21-second video posted to Facebook.“It was almost like the Beatles were here, it was huge for them,” Colbourne said with a laugh.Colbourne said he never imagined the outcome, but was happy to see his students have the unforgettable experience of performing with their childhood musical icons.The proud teacher was also impressed to see his teenage students’ enthusiasm for performing in costumes to the Wiggles’ music, which is geared at a younger audience.“Even though these are 16- and 17-year-old teenagers, they’re still children at heart and they really enjoyed getting to meet people that they’d watched on TV when they were very little — kind of their musical mentors, in a way,” Colbourne said.“It created a memory they’ll never forget. I’ll never forget it either.”By one estimate, the Wiggles had sold more than 23 million DVDs and videos, 7 million CDs and 8 million books as of 2013. Their TV show has been broadcast in more than 100 countries and they have performed more concerts than the Rolling Stones.On the web:https://www.facebook.com/robertcolbourne/videos/pcb.10156336736935932/10156336728965932.last_img read more