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My Town: Our Kitchen Table improves lives through the power of plants

My Town: Our Kitchen Table improves lives through the power of plants

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.— A leafy green initiative to improve the lives of Grand Rapids families is leading to a plant free-for-all this weekend.

On Saturday, July 26, Our Kitchen Table will be giving away a variety of vegetable plants to those who rely on the United Church Outreach Ministry and the Asian West Michigan Association for support.  Kale, collars, broccoli, cauliflower, Bok Choy, chard, lettuce, cabbage and Brussel sprouts will all be available on a first come, first serve basis. The plant pick-up will take place at Gerald R. Ford Academic Center, 851 Madison Ave. SE from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

My Town: Health phone survey in Kent County largest of its kind in the world

My Town: Health phone survey in Kent County largest of its kind in the world

GRAND RAPIDS – Starting this week, people in Kent County will be receiving letters and phone calls asking families to take part in the 2014 Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS).

This health survey is the largest-conducted telephone survey in the world. The survey will help the KCHD and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to track critical health issues, as well as creating and evaluating public health programs in Kent County. Issues and Answers, a phone marketing research firm, will be conducting the survey on behalf of the Kent County Health Department (KCHD).

Caught Being Safe program launches statewide

Michigan State Police, local law enforcement and Michigan’s Field Neurosciences Institute have teamed up with McDonald’s of Michigan to once again launch “Caught Being Safe,” a statewide bicycle/scooter helmet safety program. Kids wearing helmets and “caught being safe” by participating law enforcement officials will treated to a free ice cream cone or Apple Dippers at McDonald’s. 

According to the Field Neurosciences Institute (of Michigan): “Caught Being Safe! has shown a significant increase in both helmet utilization and public awareness regarding the critical importance of wearing a bicycle helmet. This program has impacted not only children but adults as well.” 

My Town: Celebrate Independence Day by making a life-saving donation

My Town: Celebrate Independence Day by making a life-saving donation

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Americans are encouraged to celebrate the upcoming Independence Day by rolling up their sleeves to make a life-saving donation.

Blood and platelet donations from all types of donors are needed, as the American Red Cross deals with a summer shortage.

“Vacations and other summer activities often conflict with donation appointments for regular blood donors, which makes summer a very difficult time to collect blood donations,” said Todd Kulman, communications manager for the Great Lakes Blood Services Region. “Donations decline further near summer holidays like Independence Day. A blood or platelet donation now can help sustain an adequate blood supply this summer.”

 The Red Cross must collect 15,000 blood donations daily to meet the needs of patients across the country.  From June 30, through July 7, all donors will receive a commemorative Red Cross t-shirt, while supplies last.

My Town: Health department offers free testing in honor of National HIV Testing Day

My Town: Health department offers free testing in honor of National HIV Testing Day
----------------------NEWS RELEASE--------------GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (Kent County Health Department) – One in five people living with HIV don’t know it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Thursday, June 27, 2014 marks the 10th annual National HIV Testing Day. The Kent County Health Department is making it easy for everyone to know their status the week of National HIV Testing Day: a quick, painless finger poke test, which gives you preliminary results in just 20 minutes. The Kent County Health Department is offering four opportunities to get tested, without an appointment, free and confidentially. When you get tested at one of these events, you will receive a gift card* for your time, education about HIV and prevention, and steps you can take to protect those you love from HIV.

Opinion: Have you ever been to a 5k for Mental Illness?

Opinion: Have you ever been to a 5k for Mental Illness?

 

Yes, it's me and I am on the band wagon about the subject of Mental Health. Here is something I found that describes Mental Illness in plain language:

A mental illness is a medical condition that disrupts a person's thinking, feeling, mood, ability to relate to others and daily functioning. Just as diabetes is a disorder of the pancreas, mental illnesses are medical conditions that often result in a diminished capacity for coping with the ordinary demands of life.

Serious mental illnesses include major depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and borderline personality disorder. The good news about mental illness is that recovery is possible.

Committed to Influencing Today's Youth

Committed to Influencing Today's Youth

By Marla Miller

This story originally ran in the Grand Rapids Urban Innovation Exchange

With the mission to restore and refocus at-risk youth, Grand C.I.T.Y.