Caractere’s Disposable Linens Mobilized to Aid Syrian Refugees in Germany

This fall, Germany’s administration broke apart from the position held by its neighbors and other members of the European Union on the subject of a pressing humanitarian aid crisis: Syrian refugees. Germany became the first country on the continent to accept a large contingent of asylum-seekers from the war-torn country.

The pilot program will allow 5,000 Syrians to relocate over the course of one year, thanks to the organisation of 25 private flights by the German government. Counting those who will receive this assistance and other refugees who migrate on their own, estimates place the number of people to flee Syria in recent years for Europe at 17,000+ by the beginning of 2014.

Germany and the UNHCR are lobbying other European members to contribute space for the refugees or other resources to help smooth their resettlement.

The UNHCR, or the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees,  selected the initial group of refugees according to a number of factors.

Those considered “particularly vulnerable,” such as single mothers, minorities and the chronically ill were atop the list.

For the purposes of integration, German speakers had an advantage over other applicants. Additional consideration was also given to applicants with a connection to Germany, such as time spent in the country studying or family currently located there.

Finally a certain number of spots went to the intellectual, academic and professional elite of Syria, judged the group most important for the reconstruction of the country after the resolution of the current crisis.

The first group landed in Hannover a few weeks ago, sending a message the German government wants its neighbors to notice. The government then transported them to Friedland, a transit camp where the refugees spend two weeks.

Germany is no stranger to waves of refugees, as it decided to welcome 300,000 during the wars in the Balkans of the early 1990s. Nearly a million refugees have passed through Friedland over its history.

Given the basics of shelter and food, the newcomers attend German language and culture classes every day. Administratively a step ahead of other asylum-seekers, the Syrians are granted instant refugee status, which means they can start working whenever they want.

After the two week integration and orientation period, the different states of Germany each accept a number of refugees for permanent placement.

Certainly Germany’s actions represent a noble gesture, but this recent decision risks being seen as merely “a drop in the bucket.” This is because some two million Syrians seek asylum abroad, in addition to the four million already internally displaced, according to figures released by the United Nations.

This represents one third of the country’s population, a figure the UN estimates could reach as high as one half by the end of the year. More than 700,000 Syrians have officially registered as refugees in Lebanon. This has overwhelmed Syria’s neighbor, a country normally with a population of 4.5 million.

Unfortunate for the refugees, airline regulations impose a 44 pound limit per person for luggage. Within this limit, refugees must pack all the personal items and effects intended to prepare them for a stay of two years in Germany. Many left their homes in a rush, fleeing violence or destruction, without the time to pack up properly.

Often because of these constraints, refugees come to airport with little more than the clothes on their backs. For these reasons, it’s essential for countries planning to welcome refugees must prepare adequate infrastructure and supplies in advance.

While the core of our activities stem from the hotel industry or public institutions like hospitals and schools, Caractere already has experience in the field of humanitarian aid. Thus, it was with great honor that Caractere recently received a substantial order from Germany to help welcome Syrian refugees in their transition to life in Europe.

Some of our most popular items to deal with natural disasters and large population migrations include those from our hotel supply unit, including warm blanketssleeping bags and children’s linens. Caractere also manufactures a variety of uniforms and work outfits to properly equip the staff and volunteers associated with the reception of refugees.

baby sleepingbag by caractere

Caractere’s Baby Sleeping Bag

To learn more about the different types of products that can help with the reception of refugees,  check out the English language version of the website for Caractere Paris, Disposable Linen!

Caractere UK’s Disposable Linen on Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/CaractereUK

Caractere UK’s Disposable Linen on Twitter:
http://twitter.com/CaractereUK

Sources
Amos, Deborah. “For Some Syrian Refugees, A New Home In Germany.” NPR, Sept. 12, 2013.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/parallels/2013/09/12/221764124/for-some-syrian-refugees-a-new-home-in-germany
Heine, Friederike. “Gateway to Freedom: Camp Preps Syrian Refugees for German Life.” Der Spiegel, Oct. 11, 2013.
http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/second-syrian-refugee-group-arrives-at-friedland-transit-camp-a-927372.html

A Revolution in Bedding Protection: Wet Protect Mattress Covers by Caractère

Tired of traditional mattress protectors just not cutting it, or not doing the job well enough? Experiencing leaks, stains and odours even though you thought your beds were thoroughly protected? Try the new Wet Protect Mattress Cover from Caractère Paris!

Caractère Wet Protect

The new Wet Protect system from Caractère Paris!

Caractère is proud to introduce a series of new technological innovations rolled into one: Wet Protect! A cutting-edge, new line of mattress covers and protectors that assures your beds will be able to withstand even the heaviest of leaks, yet still remain soft and silent to the touch.

Did your hotel or guesthouse recently acquire new mattresses? Always a costly endeavour, those experienced in the tourism industry know that new bedding can prove a worthy investment over time. While expensive up front, this sort of expenditure will pay for itself through positive reviews and word of mouth from satisfied clients.

However, once you’ve bought top quality sleeping arrangements to make everyone happy, how can you make sure to guarantee a quality night’s sleep for every client, all the while keeping your mattresses in shape? Too often, hotel owners sacrifice comfort for safety. How many times have you tried to fall asleep on a bed while traveling and felt that crinkly, odd plasticized layer pressing against you through the sheets? Often, guests wake up in the middle of the night in these situations, covered in sweat and unable to fall back asleep. The next day, they cannot understand the exact cause of their fatigue, but it certainly makes it more difficult for them to enjoy their holiday. In the end, this can all be due to a low quality mattress protector that prioritizes covering the mattress rather than providing a restful sleep.

Caractère thought long and hard about how to resolve this conflict between the interests of the client and the interests of the accommodation owner. Finally, we believe we’ve reached the perfect compromise: The brand new Wet Protect system! Now you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for hygiene. At the same time, you can ensure your mattress investment won’t need to be replaced as frequently thanks to Wet Protect’s full mattress protection system against leaks and incontinence. Don’t throw out anything more than the sheets if you don’t have to! While you can easily wash and replace linens as part of typical daily maintenance and cleaning schedules, there’s no simple way to remove the stench of urine or defecation from a mattress. Too many of us know, there’s nothing worse than paying for a top-shelf hotel room or suite and than discovering your place of sleep, the most sacred part of a stay, will be bothered by unwanted odors, dampness or a noisy mattress cover.

mattress protector for hotel bedWet Protect answers all these needs with its combination of spongy cotton and polyester fibres sewn together in tiny, almost micro-fibre rings. Washable and breathable, this new mattress cover is one of the most sophisticated mattress protection system available on the market. Combined with a layer of polyurethane as a liner on the inside, no rival product comes close to this perfect combination of attributes. The unique and innovative materials prevent Wet Protect from causing those noisy, crackling disturbances so common in guest houses.

the mattress protector Wet Protect can resist 50 washs

Caractere’s Wet Protect  mattress covers can easily resist 50 washes

Resistant against the use of a washing machine, these sturdy new covers can withstand more than fifty wash cycles in lower temperature settings without shrinking or losing their leak resistance. The technological advance of polyurethane provides a never before seen or felt experience of softness, while still ensuring total impenetrability, even during the heaviest of leaks and accidents. Increased width of the ridges on the sides of  the covers, from 25 to 35 cm (10 to 14 inches), offer the highest quality protection possible for the top of your mattress, as well as the sides and corners of the bed. Manufactured in a neutral white tone and sold individually, Wet Protect guarantees maximum versatility in establishments both large and small, from the most basic to the most prestigious. When you’re looking for mattress protectors, choose a product that will make your accommodations stand out from the rest! Choose Wet Protect for a better night’s sleep, for both you and your guests.

For more information, click here: http://bit.ly/15oAMLS

A new year with Caractère: Disposable solutions for ‘Back to School’

This time of year coincides with several changes. The long and sunny days start to lose their spark, not to mention length. People move around in droves, beginning new jobs and seeking new titles. The produce available changes, just as the coulors of the leaves on trees. For students and teachers, another year starts to take shape, along with its inherent excitement and anxiety. How can school administrators and education policy makers ensure a safe, easy and comfortable return to the classroom? Let’s explore the opportunities to improve your institution over years past with Caractère’s wide range of disposable products for schools and day care centers!

Naptime hygiene
Does your establishment encourage kids to take nap? A vital moment of rest during a child’s formative years, naps help the child to recharge and reboot. Pediatricians explain the need for naps as a result of the process of growth and development, a highly energy-demanding experience for children. Experts agree that as long as one imposes limits and sticks to a regimen, naps will not interfere with the child’s ability to attain a normal night of sleep.

While most teachers believe in the necessity of naps, the problems of modern life can make this normally simple concept more complicated than necessary. Naptime hygiene, in particular, proves a constant problem for daycare centers and schools. How do some institutions prevent the spread of lice, fleas, chicken pox and other diseases and pests; problems that perennially plague others? How can the school’s administration provide a comfortable solution for children often required to sleep on the floor? How can ease of use, affordability and cleanliness intersect?

To answer these questions, Caractère proudly presents disposable sleeping bags! The bags come in sets of 10 units that measure 2 m (6½ feet) long and 1m (3¼ feet) wide each. Imagine trying to travel or go camping with a group of children and having to organise logistics. Among the prime concerns of food and shelter would be the decision of where to sleep. Clearly, there now exists a quick and simple solution. Custom-designed from a resistant, non-woven fabric, these lightweight sleeping bags can be used as liners inside more traditional insulated sleeping bags, on top of nap mats or thick carpeting, or with blankets and other traditional bedding materials.

Large enough for adults yet cozy enough for children, Caractère designed the sleeping bag liner with every need in mind. In the unfortunate event of a natural disaster, they can provide ease of mind in relief centres and airports. Ever versatile, homeless shelters and other group housing establishments could use them to avoid the spread of infections. Zipper-free, there’s no danger of snagging or hurting yourself, or feeling a cold shock from metal touching the skin. Individually-wrapper packaging ensures a hygienic distribution to each and every user. Finally, created with the environment in mind, the liners can then be thrown away or recycled. To learn more, see the Sleeping Bags page on Disposable Linen’s website.

For the youngest among those at daycare, Caractère also created a baby-friendly version of the sleeping bag. Ideally for children of two to 18 months old, the bags are available in sets of 6 units. A wonderful, innovative and popular product not only for day cares, but also for parents on the go who want the best quality sleeping arrangement for their children. Available in 6 colours, you can choose one to match your mood. This solution ends your worries about cleaning, ironing and looking out for baby sheets!

Both the adult and baby sleeping bags’ lifespans range anywhere from one to two weeks, depending on the user’s cleanliness and preferences. In terms of safety, the baby-sized version closes thanks to a Velcro seal sewn on shoulders, instead of the buttons used by other products that pose a choking hazard. A zip fastener on the side prevents injuries to the baby’s neck. Adjustable in size thanks to shoulder straps, the sleeping bag also offers room for a personal touch with the choice of six colours: Blue, Light Blue, Golden Yellow, Light Yellow, Salmon and Light Green. Please see the Disposable Linen website for more information about our comfy Baby Sleeping Bags.

Library and media room cleanliness
Does your school integrate multi-media presentations or activities into its lessons? Research shows that switching from the typical, top-down hierarchy of lectures to a more inclusive and varied set of media sources encourages the development of a child’s mind. In addition, it helps provide a moment of discovery for the children, who feel they have a choice over what information they access and for how long. Why not take advantage of advances in technology to accelerate learning and give your kids a more accurate view of the world?

Unfortunately, the realities of lice and ticks often put a damper on multi-media aspirations. A pesky issue, these critters can dig deep down in the padded foam that lines earphones and headsets, ready to strike at any moment. Once infected, a child can spread lice to an entire class in a matter of days. After a tick attaches itself, it can spread lyme disease and stay on the child’s skin for extended periods of time, undiscovered, sucking blood as long as it desires.

Fortunately, Caractère’s disposable headphone covers present a perfect solution! Totally hygienic, this is the only way to avoid infections because each user puts on a different set each time. Avoid the lice, ticks, flu viruses and mega-resistant bacteria with sanitary equipment for each user. Luxury gyms and fitness centres already provide their clients with these headphone covers to allow users to listen to music or watch television while they enjoy their favourite exercise activities. This after they found it too costly to give a new pair of headphones to each guest, not to mention the environmental waste that would entail!

Easy to wear and comfortably breathable, the earphone covers feel almost undetectable when worn. Caractère now offers six different sizes of headphone covers, designed and tailored for devices between 1 and 7 inches (3 to 12 cm) in diameter. They also fit the ear pieces of conventional telephones and function as an ideal cover for cellular and mobile headsets, such as CN® ou jaffa®. Fitting snugly, they guarantee your listening comfort while providing the safety desired by parents and health inspectors by showing your respect for hygiene. Individually wrapped and sealed for sanitary conditions, they come in sets of pairs for simple distribution. Each package contains 100 pairs (200 individual covers), in an easy-open box that doubles as a dispenser for the covers.

Video: How to measure the size of your disposable headphone covers

For the style-conscious, Caractere manufacturers them in both black and white versions. Check our website for more information and do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. Our staff is standing by to ensure your transition into this new school year goes as smoothly as possible. Finally, we want to wish the best of luck to the teachers and students out there!

Legionellosis or Legionnaire’s Disease in Spa and wellness centre

Are you the owner or manager of a spa, hot tub or pool, or do you provide showers and air conditioning for your clients? Make sure you are fully aware of the dangers of legionnaire’s disease and the risks to your clients, and understand what your legal obligations are.

What exactly is Legionnaire’s Disease?

legionella

Legionnaire’s disease is a serious disease caused by a tiny aquatic organism which thrives in warm, damp environments. It can be inhaled in fine droplets, leading to pneumonia and a high fever. As the disease takes up to 10 days to develop many other people may be infected before it is realised that anything is amiss. Air conditioning systems, humidifiers, nebulisers, ornamental fountains and many other types of equipment containing water may also be sources of legionnaire’s disease.

How can it be prevented?

 

A spare swimsuit for pool to keep the pool clean.

Because of its long incubation period an outbreak is easier to prevent than to control and there are strict regulations in place to safeguard public health. The essential feature is a controlled system of regular testing and keeping water systems clean. Although legionella bacteria can be found in many sources, including fresh water, it becomes dangerous when slime is allowed to develop and when the temperature reaches 35-45 degrees centigrade.

What are my legal obligations?

According to www.hse.gov.uk, under general Health and Safety law you are obliged to maintain your water systems in good condition and assess the risk of a problem developing. This means drawing up a risk assessment, identifying potential sources of legionnaire’s disease and preparing a course of action to monitor that risk. You must keep accurate records and be able to prove you are taking your responsibilities seriously.

The Notification of Cooling Towers and Evaporative Condensers Regulations state that if you have a cooling tower or evaporative condenser on site you must notify the local authority in writing. Contact your local Environmental Health department.

 

What should I do on a daily basis?

disposable flip flop for pool and spa

If you employ five people or more, you must have a written risk assessment and keep careful records of your monitoring of the water system. Make sure you have a responsible person do this and that all your staff know the correct way to use equipment.

Keep the system and the water clean, and avoid a situation where an outbreak could develop. Keep the water too hot for the bacteria to survive or add an antibacterial solution to prevent growth.

Consider employing a firm of consultants to check your supply.

Keeping Employees Healthy Proves Profitable For Business and Employees

Keeping Employees Healthy Proves Profitable For Business and Employees

By QuiteUnusual (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Every company strives not only to deliver the best products and services to their customers, but also to deliver a high quality workplace to its employees. Employees who are happy in their jobs are likely to have a greater loyalty to the company as a whole and will remain with the company for a long time. Low turnover means more employees with an intimate and thorough understanding of the company and who are, as a result, better suited to represent the company. Companies spend a large part of their budgets on ways to keep employees engaged, motivated and, above all else, happy. According to experts, one simple way to help achieve this goal is to help employees stay healthy.

In a study released in 2012 and conducted by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans,

Council Directive 89/391/EEC of 12 June 1989 on the introduction of measures to encourage improvements in the safety and health of workers at work

researchers found that companies were experiencing tangible, real world benefits from investing in employee wellness programs as well as actively encouraging a healthier lifestyle. More than 600 Human Resource professionals and benefits executives took part in the study and, by far, the biggest gains were seen in overall productivity. Additionally, though, companies also saw a lowering of health care costs overall as well. Although the results were not instantaneous, the companies reported a long term return on investment for their increased role in employee care.

One easy way to help support overall employee health is for companies to do what they can to give their employees the safest and most sanitary work conditions.

headphone covers

For those working In the service and sales sector this can be achieved through simple sanitation measures such as using disposable covers for headphones, earpieces and microphones. A small investment in these easy to use, disposable covers prevents the spread of germs throughout the year and encourages an all around healthier work environment. Taking such a simple step requires very little investment on the part of a company and can add to the return on investment as part of a whole office healthcare campaign.

The benefits of investing in the promotion of employee health and wellness can directly benefit the company both in terms of employee satisfaction as well as increased productivity. It can also cut back on health related expenses, including the expense incurred when large numbers of employees become infected with a cold or flu virus which is spread through less than sanitary conditions. Simple efforts such as making hand sanitizer available and using disposable headset and microphone covers can stop germs in their tracks and further contribute to keeping employees healthy and happy.

Waterproof pillowcase Nuit Tranquille! Repellent and breathable

Waterproof pillow protector

Waterproof pillowcase Nuit Tranquille! Repellent and breathable, available in different sizes, lifespan equal to washable pillowcase, no noise coming from the material! These pillowcases are ideal for hotel but also normal use!

More info here

How Important Are Headphone Covers During Cold & Flu Season?

How Important Are Headphone Covers During Cold & Flu Season?

The work force of almost every company is impacted during the brutal winter months of cold and flu season.  No matter how dedicated a sales, service or support team may be, winter brings with it a higher rate of absenteeism due primarily to health concerns.  And once a winter cold or flu hits an office it can spread easily, infecting other workers and making the problem worse.  Although companies encourage their employees to stay home when they’re sick, sometimes germs can be spread before the onset of noticeable symptoms.  This is when sanitation measures such as disposable headphone covers can make a big difference.

 

headset protection covers in call centres

In a busy work centre, it is often the case that employees will share headsets with microphones.  This is especially true in call centres, sales offices and administrative support areas.    The use of these can easily result in the spread of germs as employees speak to customers, exhaling and even coughing onto the microphone part of the headset.  Germs are easily spread by other means as well, including the hands, which makes any part of the headset that touches a person a likely suspect when it comes to the spread of the cold and flu virus.  Although this can lead to big problems, it can also be easily mitigated.

 

The spread of a cold or flu virus can easily land many members of a work force in bed for several days.

flue virus H1N1 from Wikipedia

flue virus H1N1 from Wikipedia

This impacts on the company as a whole in many difference ways.  First, they lose out on a large portion of their staff which creates extra work for the remaining staff as well as a backlog in the amount of work to do.  In a customer service setting this can easily result in customers receiving less than stellar support which can have a direct impact on overall sales.

A company which simply begins to employ the use of disposable headset and microphone covers effectively stops the spread of germs in its tracks.

Disposable headset covers

White Protective Headset Cover

Employees simply need to slip these covers off at the end of their shift, throw them in the bin and it’s done.  The next employee can then place fresh covers onto the headset as needed and won’t have to worry about catching their colleague’s cold.  This can help prevent the spread of a cold no matter how severe.  As a result, the company will see fewer employees calling out sick, saving them thousands over the course of the cold and flu season.