The Recognition Minute
Awards for South Africans July 21 2017, 0 Comments
May I state the obvious? We live in interesting times. As always!
The history of South Africa has given us lots to talk about. The wildness of the terrain has yielded so much to see. Diverse people live together in this colourful nation.
As South Africans, we have shown great resourcefulness in finding solutions to problems over the decades, even centuries. So, a little about our heritage of success, for which we could be forgiven for awarding ourselves a medal. No, make that a huge, silver trophy!
3 December 1967, on the tip of our African continent, Dr Chris Barnard performed the world’s first heart transplant. It was uncharted territory. A domain unexplored in humans. It was very risky since once he had removed the patients failing heart, there was no turning back. Either the recipient would never wake up or they would wake up with a functioning heart. If the heart did beat and give life, how well and for how long? There was no precedent. No one knew.
Louis Washkansky did wake up and Dr Barnard became the first ever to succeed in transplanting a human heart into another person. Kudos, trophies, medals and plenty of certificates all round. Barnard became an international celebrity and performed another ten heart transplants, one of the patients surviving for 23 years.
Another Doctor, Dr Selig Percy Amoils created a new method of cataract surgery, using his cryoprobe. He developed this method at Baragwanath Hospital and was awarded the Queen’s Award for Technological Innovation in 1975. His invention gave back sight to many, who could now enjoy their successes in the light. This put South Africa on the world’s stage of medical advancement again. His invention has since been on display in the Kensington Museum in London.
Another exceptional advancement in medical technology was the CAT scan. This was developed in Cape Town by physicist Allan Cormack and his associate Godfrey Hounsfield. It required medical and mathematical skill and innovation in order to achieve their goal: a scanner that could scan the whole body and translate the data into meaningful images. These scans were clearer than static X-Ray plates and took the medical world a leap forward in diagnostic ability.
Their work also deserved an enormous trophy and was recognized through a Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine.
A CAT scanner is used routinely today in the diagnosis and management of many medical conditions and allows for much better and more specific treatment.
One more South African medical invention: The Smartlock safety syringe.
The Smartlock syringe automatically retracts the needle into a sheath and locks it in place as the needle is withdrawn the patient. Therefore, no needle caps to place over used needles or a specific ‘sharps’ disposal container. This meant safety for all concerned.
Interesting times indeed. May our people continue earning awards for South Africa, whether in science or culture, sport or engineering.
In our next blog post, I will feature some other, world-renowned inventions by South Africans who deserve the gold medal of innovation and the trophy of success!
Easter April 12 2017, 0 Comments
At this time of the year, awarding trophies might be furthest from your mind. It is school holidays. The extra long, long weekend is just around the corner and many people will be out of town, enjoying some well-deserved recreation and family time.
Easter is a time of deep reflection for many people around the globe. We share those sentiments as we think about the meaning of this season. It is both a solemn occasion and a celebration. But the celebration is not because of a race won or trophy earned. Neither are any there any medals. It is simple and profound; a time to remember redemption for both Christians and Jews.
So, may we take this opportunity to wish our Jewish customers and friends chag semeach this Pesach and our Christian customers and friends a truly blessed Easter.
Wherever you may travel, be safe. We hope to see you soon, rested and refreshed.
The All-important Badge March 20 2017, 0 Comments
From the first day of life, maybe even before a child is born, a name is selected. That name will stay with that child until the day they die. It is a life-long investment that is made on their behalf.
Perhaps that is why our names are so important to us. Even if we share our name with another, somehow, when our name it called we tend to believe it is for us alone. Have you ever been in a crowd and heard your name being called?
When we meet new people, is it not our names that we use first to introduce ourselves? “Hi, I’m Jack. You are?” Or, we may simply say our name and hand over a business card. A business card is something for the other person, whether stranger or friend, that contains many details but most important of all, our name.
Names are great conversation-starters. This is why so many more people in business wear badges, more than ever before.
The cashier in the bank has a name badge pinned to her chest. The waiter wears his badge prominently, so that patrons can call for him when they need service. It is also useful to the waiter, to help the customer remember who they should tip.
In the security industry, employees need to be identified in order to differentiate them from civilians and other perpetrators of mischief. For this reason, badges are manufactured to specific specifications, unique to that organisation.
Badges are not only worn as a means of personal identity. Many forms of insignium are worn to indicate rank or level of achievement, in the form of a scroll or possibly some other shape associated with the purpose – a star, a cross or a particular logo.
At Prestige Awards, we make badges. We bring identity to the school teacher, the corporate employee and the pupil. We recognise achievement and help give you your identifiable brand so that you are addressed properly and remembered.
Badges are made to order. The badge may be pinned with a brooch pin or held onto the clothing using a strong magnet. It’s your choice. Direct your search to this link for more ideas: https://www.prestigeawards.co.za/collections/badgesWe have been recognising people since 1983. Why not ensure that you are one of them; one of us!