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Showing posts from September, 2012

Day of Caring and a Minor Crisis Averted

Friday, September 21st I got a frantic phone call from the South Corvallis Food Bank; "Deanna!  We thought we were going to have enough food leftover from Monday and Wednesday for distribution this weekend, but we're all out.....We have pounds of nothing!"  Luckily, Sept 21st there was a bustle of positive activity around Corvallis as it was United Way's Day of Caring.  Groups of gung-ho volunteers were out and about doing all sorts of projects for the betterment of our community.  We were lucky enough to have employees from Samaritan Health come help out at SAGE. 
Volunteers helped us clear green beans, whack back a section of invasives and of course, harvest! In fact, that was the largest single day harvest to date, nearly 250lbs of food total (with 195.5lbs being harvested by Sam Health for direct delivery to the South Corvallis Food Bank).  Immediate crisis of no food at the food bank averted.  Still working on relieving the more long term crisis of hunger in our…

Scottish Health Survey 2011

Scotland’s Chief Statistician today announced the publication of the Scottish Health Survey 2011.  This is the seventh report in the Scottish Health Survey series which began in 1995.  The report comprises separate volumes for adults and children and Health Board level results are published alongside the annual report for the first time since 2003.

Men, Suicide & Society

This report seeks to explain why men of low socio-economic position in their mid-years are excessively vulnerable to death by suicide and provides recommendations to reduce these unnecessary deaths.
The report goes beyond the existing body of suicide research and the statistics, to try and understand life for this group of men, and why they may come to feel without purpose, meaning or value.
DownloadHERE

A Few Fun Production Facts

This season we have a plethora of veggies going out to a variety of agencies.  We always track the weight of donated produce, but this year we're also tracking the approximate value (based on Safeway pricing of conventional produce).  We feel like using Safeway as an average is more realistic as that is a more likely place for clients of the different hunger relief agencies to shop.  This is one reason why we don't use organic produce prices or compare it to local produce at the co-op.  I can go into more detail if you're interested, but just that explanation ended up being longer winded than I expected.....what I really want to show you all was a couple of fun facts that Chris recently deciphered from our production spreadsheets.  


So far this year we've donated:
over a 1/4 ton of cabbagenearly $1000 of kaleclose to 300 heads of lettucealmost 500 lbs of cucumbers

Another Fun Fact
upwards of 80 deliveries have been made by bike, amounting to more than 3000 lbs of produce d…

The Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival 1st - 24th October 2012

Now in its sixth year, the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival is one of Scotland's most diverse cultural events, covering everything from music, film and visual art to theater, dance, and literature. The annual festival takes place in venues across Scotland from 1st - 24th October 2012, aiming to support the arts and challenge preconceived ideas about mental health.

Festival information 

Get involved! 
Cheers 

Lesley

Friday is.....

World Alzheimer's Day is on Friday 21st September. How aware are you?
Alzheimer Scotland has just launched a new report, Delivering Integrated Dementia Care: The 8 Pillars Model of Community Support, which calls for a radical reform of the way we deliver community care services for people with dementia, their carers, partners and families.

Healthcare Staff: Mental Health & Exercise / Physical Activity

Dr Andrew Murray from the Scottish Government spoke yesterday at the Mental Health Nursing Forum on the importance of encouraging exercise as a way of significantly improving health outcomes in Scotland. Click HERE to watch an online resource for students/qualified nursing staff. It's really quite powerful. Dr Murray works alongside Sir Harry Burns on this agenda and they are actively trying to influence knowledge, understanding and practice in a bid to get all nurses/healthcare staff to ask patients routinely about their activity levels and prescibing exercise as an effective treatment.

The Internet Cult of the Special Needs Mommy

This weekend, I did what I periodically do (and I suggest you do as well): I Googled my name and home town and did my best to clean up public links that included them. It's amazing how quickly things like comments at newspapers can snowball and it's never a good idea for a future employer to think one's entire life consists of funny "Caption This!" contests.

However, in the course of deleting innocuous comments, I ran across one that stopped me cold. Several years back, I had written into Time magazine in response to a (very slanted) article they ran about food allergies and they published my response. The comment itself is long gone from the Time site. However, my name, hometown and a single line from the comment were now part of a support site for moms of diabetic children.

The original comment was, I thought, innocuous. It was about how food allergies are not thought of as a real disease, and how schools protect, for example, diabetic children but don't alwa…

What Does It Mean To Be A Good Food Allergy Mother?

As part of the college application process, parents are asked to write a summary of their child's strengths, weaknesses and issues that may have affected their high school performance. The summary is then used by the child's guidance counselor to write a letter of recommendation (one the parent never sees) to the colleges to which the child is applying.

I found myself writing at length about my son's food allergies, including the following:
Other people really don't understand the effect food allergies have on kids, socially and anxiety-wise. My son has had four major reactions that involved breathing difficulties and rescue meds; he's had countless other reactions that did not progress as far, but that made him sick. Coping with the fear of a reaction and learning to make good decisions, cook his own food, and watch out for potential issues (like kissing someone who has eaten peanut butter) has been a major undertaking.
There was more before and after that paragraph:…

Thomas Szasz Dies September 8th 2012

Thomas Szasz the critic of conventional psychiatry died aged 92 at the weekend. Read his obituary in 'Critical Psychiatry' HERE<*ahref="http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/oct/04/thomas-szasz">ALSO

Harvesting Time of the Year!

This time of the year is delightful; the light starts to change, the weeds are less enthusiastic about filling in the blank spaces of the garden and we have a big bounty of produce to deliver to hunger relief agencies.  With work party volunteers lately we've been able to do substantial harvesting which everyone always enjoy (and is especially helpful to us as picking things like beans, tomatoes and tomatillos can be time consuming on your own!).   Just a couple of weeks ago, the Tuesday evening work party volunteers helped us harvest 120 pounds of produce to deliver to the South Corvallis Food Bank.  Any guess on how many pounds of beans are in the tub in photo above?   I'll give you a hit; the answer is 1/6th of the total poundage we harvested that night! That harvest was just one day, one delivery site.  A lot of produce is being distributed and we couldn't do it without all the hardwork of our volunteers (past, present and future!).


In addition to harvesting, we've…

Have You Met My Friend: Constant Agitation?

This morning was a pretty typical morning in our household: the kids 20 minutes behind and me sucked into the Siren's call of Facebook when I should be packing lunches. So, the last 5 minutes was a flurry of my son and I both shoving things into a bag.

I grab a dark chocolate Kit Kat (thank you, Peanut Free Planet and Nestle) and shove it in. A moment later, he yanks it back out and mumbles something. I hear "mmrmmmrmmrBLEmme itchy mmrmmr."

"What?" My hand stills as I'm shoving "may contain milk" pretzel crisps into another bag.

"I said that you need to stop packing those in my lunch. They make me itchy. Same with the Junior Mints. There's too much soy in them."

I'm holding the pretzels he's asked for, thinking, what about these? New item we've been trying, have packed it in his lunch before... I go for lecture mode in self-defense.

"You do remember these are 'may contain', right?" I ask.

"Yeah, I remembe…