Tag Archives: Pandemic

PROTECT YOUR LOVED ONES FROM COVID-19

Caution against infectious diseases and risk must be maintained during these uncertain times. Instant Vitals introduces a revolutionary new mobile app to monitor these risks by informing users of their health status through either green, amber, or red alerts. Instant Vitals helps create safer social settings for you, your family, or your employees.

Click HERE to learn how you can conveniently protect your loved ones from COVID-19.

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Get COVID Compliant

New cases of COVID-19 has almost doubled since last week. As COVID-19 infections continue to climb, accurate assessment of health risks remain crucial to both businesses and individuals. Instant Vitals introduces a revolutionary new health risk screening app that warns you immediately if health risks are detected.

Contact us for more information and make our communities thrive again! Click here.

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Animation Helps SA Educators Fill COVID-19 Learning Gaps

The impact of COVID-19 on education could be felt for as long as ten years. By the end of 2020, it was estimated that despite efforts made in both the private and public schools, “children lost a full six months of learning and even now they’ve gone back, it’s patchy because they can only go one or two days a week,” a statement made by education expert, Professor Nicky Roberts.

Furthermore, South Africa is not unique. According to the UNESCO Monitoring Report, 192 countries had implemented nationwide closures, affecting about 99% of the world’s student population, and a total of 1.75 billion learners.

Simultaneously, the pandemic forced disruption in ways of learning. Innovators accelerated blended learning, distance learning and open educational applications to reduce disruption to education, following a suggestion by UNESCO, and in so doing, propelled e-learning by three to five years. characters

With the third wave of COVID-19 currently hitting Europe, open schools may once again be under threat with online education as the only real alternative. The challenge for parents and educators is sifting through the mountain of new digital education programs on offer – from maths and science to coding and drone technology. How does a parent or school discern the quality, credibility and differentiators of each education platform? It’s not easy. Meanwhile, education companies need to work harder to stand out in the tsunami of content in this evolving industry.

Steve McDonald, the co-founder at animation and video studio, 3rdfloor, explains, “The industry is in total flux. Online education platforms are desperate to stand out. They want to catch the attention of learners and educators and hold it. Their websites and social media are their shop window, so that initial impression really matters. Google Analytics shows that the bounce rate – the percentage of people who land on your website and then leave without visiting another page – is almost 57%. In other words, you have to make it count.”

Animated videos help businesses and organisations simplify their message and show their target audience who they really are. A good video will draw on a number of tools from the animation toolbox – animated infographics, custom character design and a style that is made to catch the attention of the viewer you are speaking to.

“Animated videos are also extremely versatile: we often make multiple versions in different languages, edit videos into bite-size ‘cut downs’ for various social platforms, pull out gifs and images and even offer a full digital asset library which our clients can use across their entire brand,” he adds.

3rdfloor is currently creating a series of animated videos for MySociaLife, the South African digital life skills program which teaches online safety, media literacy and social media awareness in schools.

MySociaLife’s founder, Dean McCoubrey, says, “We educate students and parents, teachers and psychologists, and we teach eight different modules about the complexity of life online. It’s a lot to explain: we didn’t believe that our story could be told in 90 seconds. The animated explainer encapsulates it all so concisely, and the animated characters make the program memorable. The feedback has been phenomenal.”

Warren Willmott, Animation Director at 3rdfloor, adds: “Every client is different, so we conceptualise and design the entire visual universe according to the brand and message that your video needs to convey. Not only does this help you stand out from the crowd, but it also gives your message longevity.”

He also proposes some considerations for educators looking to produce animated videos:

  1. Focus on the story: You can’t have an engaging video without an engaging script. Spend time on this part of the process and make sure you get it right.
  2. Keep it short: We usually say 90 seconds is a good duration, but if you can tell your story in less then go for it. Anything that doesn’t perform a function must go.
  3. Be brave. Be bold: A little humour and quirkiness go a long way. So does the choice of music, voice artist and the use of sound effects. Don’t be afraid to go with cool ideas that are different – go with them because they’re different.
  4. You get what you pay for: There are no shortcuts, good work takes time. So before you choose your supplier, look closely at their body of work and the level of detail they offer.

The making of the animated video is here: https://vimeo.com/528828133
“To stand out in the digital noise that is the media environment of today, you really have to be able to tell a story on multiple levels. It’s visual, informative and emotional, and if you can strike the right balance, your video will connect with people and be remembered.”

For more information, contact Kaeleigh Elliott at newsdesk@mediaweb.co.za
To see 3rdfloor’s work, visit: 3rdfloor.tv

Managing COVID-19 Risk for Schools and Families

As schools reopen all across South Africa, limiting infection rates amongst learners and providing safe sanitary environments should be our primary goal. Curtailing the spread of the more contagious “South African Variant” requires the specific and timely testing Instant Vitals™ provides. This advanced health-risk screening solution offers parents, learners and educators early detection, accurate screening and peace-of-mind.

Find out more about protecting your loved ones by clicking HERE.

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How Instant Vitals works?

Covid-19 vaccine rollouts are still rolling out slowly, and many people may not be given treatments for health or moral reasons. Geo-political displacement, economic hardships or social discrimination may be obstacles restricting the availability of life-saving treatments. Instant Vitals presents a privacy preserving, non-invasive, accessible and non-discriminatory solution to the health problems during this pandemic and will also assists when there are other variants and different types of viruses.

Find out how HERE.

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Creating Effective Remote Onboarding in a Post-Pandemic World

This article is contributed by Fuel Online, a valued member of ADESSA.

With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, many companies have adopted a fully or hybrid remote approach to working. With an established workforce, this is a manageable transition, however, organisations will need to think about how they effectively onboard future employees.

The dramatic shift away from established office working, to the majority of workforces now working from home, has revealed significant benefits that have led to many organisations making the change a permanent one.  Employers are realising that they can significantly reduce overhead costs and are no longer geographically limited in their hiring choices. Many businesses are also adopting a hybrid approach to capitalise on work-from-home advantages and mitigating the disadvantages. The hot desk is ready to make a comeback as businesses offer smaller, flexible office spaces for team members to drop in one or two days a week. However, the need for effective onboarding is more essential than ever. Organisations need to ensure that they can onboard future employees seamlessly.

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Identify important information

Whether you’re an experienced onboarder or just starting out, the first step is to identify the content that new employees need to know to get started. Don’t give in to the temptation to try communicate everything at once. That approach will overwhelm your onboarding programme and will likely leave you with a new employee who has struggled to retain the basic and most important information they need to function in their role. The best approach is to determine two or three learning objectives. This can be done by refining the information to cover what your new employee needs to be able to do in their role. Potential learning objectives may be:

  • Apply company values to their work
  • Identify and use appropriate tools for completing tasks
  • Follow company policies

Clear learning objectives will help you to carefully review all potential content and evaluate the value of each piece to identify what content is truly relevant to your onboarding programme and what is better placed elsewhere. These will help you to order your content into what is most urgent, informing your content creation roadmap.

Create your content

All training content needs to be informed by your onboarding learning objectives. If you have existing onboarding material that needs to be converted, it is useful to bear in mind that no content is unusable; all existing legacy content can be adjusted to suit delivery through an online training methodology, organisations just need to understand how to utilize what currently exists. An experienced online training service provider, like FUEL, is more than capable of ensuring that all existing content is revised and utilized so no skills knowledge is lost during the implementation phase. FUEL excels at successfully converting existing training content into engaging, online training modules for maximum return on investment. We offer a full-service production service, from script to screen. Our ‘Presenter to camera methodology provides a vital transitional link for learners moving from classroom-based learning to online training. Our green-screen studio is equipped with state-of-the-art camera and lighting equipment and we offer a range of production packages to meet both your learning objectives and your budget.

Assign training leaders

Assigning a Training Leader to a new employee, will ensure that they get the support and motivation that they require when making the shift to working online. For many employees who are used to having the support of colleagues in the office environment, the shift to working remotely will be challenging.

A training leader will be able to monitor the progress of learners through their modules and can offer regular check-ins with those who are struggling to adapt to the new way of working. The most unique challenge of all virtual activity, including training staff to work online, is social isolation. Check-ins help remote workers feel a sense of community. If those workers are left ignored for too long, it could potentially impact employee health and wellness and be a drag on productivity.

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IS YOUR ORGANIZATION COVID COMPLIANT?

Is your business or school Covid compliant? As of today (26 November 2020), the cumulative total of COVID-19 cases is 775 502 with 3 250 new cases identified since the last report. We have registered a positivity rate of 14%, which is concerning. Protect your business or school from viruses by monitoring and managing your staff wellness and business risk. Instant Vitals, a revolutionary medical-grade risk screening app greenlights staff/customers or teachers/learners for entry. Offer peace of mind to all involved by improving overall health & safety and risk management with Instant Vitals.

Find out more

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Embracing a Pandemic

Contributed by Adrie Schoeman, MD of Master Maths, a member of ADESSA.

Master Maths has been around for more than 40 years. After so many years in business, with franchise centres in nearly every town in South Africa and some in Namibia, we have a solid rhythm. Our structures and processes are in place.  However, when that announcement came that our country (like the rest of the world) will go into a hard lock down, the uncertainty kicked in and the fear was real. This pandemic did not choose it’s victims, we were all (small and large businesses) in the same boat. None of us could ever have foreseen a scenario where a pandemic just changed our normal day into something really surreal. 

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We had to trust our investment made into solid systems and it stood the test of time. Master Maths has invested substantially in developing a new LMS system, which we were in the process of rolling out. The pandemic forced us to fast track this and with good support and collaboration tools, the pace at which franchisees adapted to the new technology, ensured that we could proceed with our business in a new “normal” manner. Our learners could use our platform and with some additional applications, were able to continue their learning path. Parents had the knowledge that the monitoring and support from the franchise centre was there. Online learning became the new “normal” and we will never be able to thank our clients for their support and trust during this year!

But more than anything else, I saw grit in action!  Grit means courage, a show of strength of character, a never give up attitude, a true commitment… not a word you hear often, but one I now, know the meaning of and experienced first-hand. Not only amongst colleagues and franchisees, but also amongst our learners, parents and every schoolteacher.  Being involved in education we all had one goal – support learners as best we can.

I was asked to write about Master Maths’ experience of this pandemic.

This is a story of a learner’s experience, shared with me … it is but one, but a similar story was told by every franchisee I spoke to.

“Today was my first session back at the centre since lockdown. When I arrived at the centre, it felt weird and strange and honestly I was totally freaked out. Thank goodness for my mask, although I hate the thing! I was greeted by a “please wait before entering” sign at the door. There was someone coming towards me, her eyes looked vaguely familiar, but I didn’t recognize her immediately, until I heard her… hallo how are you, welcome back…of course…did she put one some weight and look at the hair…  It is sanitizing, temperature measures, cleaning shoes and questionnaires, but then I was seated and a familiar feeling of being back at the centre started kicking in.  I missed seeing my tutor…. online is ok, but not the same.”

The question most asked and written about in the media – is teaching going to change to virtual teaching in future? At Master Maths we embrace technology. It is a fantastic tool, but online tutoring only, will never be able to replace the experience of being able to see and interact with a tutor/teacher. We are happy to see us slowly getting back to business as normal!

SA Company Launches A World First: AI-Based Risk Screening Mobile App – KEY FOR COVID-19

The Instant Vitals app converts a mobile phone into a key vital signs medical device that could save lives when screening for Covid-19 symptoms. The AI screening and risk management app safeguards people through detection of health risks by measuring key vital sign indicators.

South African company, UC-Wireless (Pty) Ltd, has launched Instant Vitals, the world’s first smart mobile-based app that provides advanced healthcare risk wellness and Covid-19 screening for business staff, clients and personal users. The app screens the main recognised symptoms and measures vital signs, which are key early indicators for health risk especially Covid-19, including oxygen saturation, heart rate and respiratory rate, using the mobile phone’s camera and Artificial Intelligence (AI) incorporated into the app, turning mobile devices into an easy-to-use clinical tool exhibiting an acceptable standard of medical device accuracy.

The presentation of Covid-19 in respect of the various signs and symptoms from several reviews, studies and reports, including the World Health Organisation (WHO), state that temperature measurement alone is ineffective in detecting a possible Covid-19 infection. Asymptomatic patients don’t reveal symptoms and aren’t aware of an infection. There’s proof that the critical early warning signs of Covid-19, include a reduction in oxygen saturation (below 95%), and/or a high resting heart rate (above 100 beats per minute), or an increase in respiratory rate (above 20 breaths per minute) in a resting person.

For more information, visit https://instant-vitals.com/

Quentin Daffarn
Quentin Daffarn – CEO of UC-Wireless