Youth Development Programs Strengthen Classrooms

<b>Youth Development Programs Strengthen Classrooms</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Comprehensive approaches to positive youth development are becoming more common in schools across the country, resulting in stronger and healthier youth. Research shows that such programs increase academic achievement, decrease problem behavior and increase pro-social behavior. The positive impact of programs that develop life skills in the classroom has caught the attention of some of the nation’s largest school districts, including Chicago Public Schools (CPS).

Lions Quest, a positive youth development program of Lions Clubs International Foundation, recently entered select CPS schools as part of a movement to develop students’ social and emotional skills. Now in more than 10 schools throughout CPS, Lions Quest is garnering recognition and support for additional expansion.

The program’s positive presence in CPS recently attracted the attention of Bank of America, resulting in a $10,000 grant awarded to Lions Quest by the Chicago division of the organization.

“Youth in Chicago are some of the most at-risk in the U.S.,” said Al Brandel, Chairperson of Lions Clubs International Foundation, “But the Lions Quest program aims to provide these youth with the life skills they need to develop into healthy adults and build stronger communities.”

Edward Tilden Career Community Academy High School was awarded the funding from the Bank of America grant, providing the Lions Quest “Skills for Action” program. Tilden, a high school located on Chicago’s south side with a student population of 1,350, has a high drop-out rate and low graduation rate, and the majority of students come from low-income families. The funds trained 36 teachers from Tilden and other Chicago Public Schools and provided curriculum materials to 500 students.

Teacher training is central to the success of the program. Through informative and engaging workshops, teachers become experts on the content and subsequently implement the program according to the needs of their classroom.

By implementing positive youth development programs in schools, students receive a comprehensive approach to education that strengthens not only the classroom, but also society as a whole.

For more information, visit www.lions-quest.org.

Program Teaches EMS Workers How to Respond to Epilepsy

When the average citizen sees someone pass out or start convulsing, their first instinct is probably to dial 9-1-1. Unfortunately, too many emergency medical services (EMS) personnel do not know how to recognize or treat a person experiencing a seizure.

When someone is having a seizure they often become confused, cannot communicate and do not understand or respond to questions or orders. Forceful methods of restraint, such as tasering, hog-tying, facedown holds and choke holds can put people with epilepsy in serious danger. Tragically, there have even been deaths of people who had a seizure when first responders didn’t recognize that the symptoms they were responding to were the signs of a seizure.

Save Money With Free Software for Your Computer

<b>Save Money With Free Software for Your Computer</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Looking to save money? There are ways to leverage great technology without burning a hole in your wallet.

Here are some safe, secure options — all of them free — that can help make your computer more productive, useful and fun:

* Firefox Browser:

(www.GetFireFox.com) — Get onto the Internet with this alternative to Windows Internet Explorer that is compatible with both Macs and PCs. It is fast and secure and allows you to download lots of free plug-ins that provide information, social media integration and multimedia capabilities.

* TweetDeck:

(www.TweetDeck.com) — This free program enables you to easily manage, monitor and post to all of your social media networks, including Facebook, Twitter and MySpace, from one place.

* Trillian:

(www.Trillian.im) — Not everyone uses the same instant message service. You might use AOL while your friend uses Yahoo. Trillian lets you combine all of your instant message accounts — AOL, Yahoo, MSN, ICQ and IRC — into one program. Recently updated, it can integrate your Facebook and Twitter accounts, too.

* LogMeIn:

(www.LogMeIn.com) — The free version of LogMeIn lets you securely access your computer from anywhere in the world. Want to check your home computer while you’re on the road? Go to a web browser from any Internet-enabled computer or mobile device, and log in to your account to instantly connect and access any programs, files, photos or music on your desktop.

* Windows Live Desktop:

(www.WindowsLive.com/desktop) — Windows 7, which will be loaded on many new computers and mobile devices this year, does not include its own email program. Instead, Microsoft offers a mail program as a free download from this site, along with other programs, including a photo organizer and an application for creating videos.

* Picnik:

(www.Picnik.com) — Picnik is a free alternative to Photoshop and offers photo-editing capabilities such as cropping, resizing, sharpening and red-eye reduction. You can add special effects, fonts, or various shapes to turn your precious memory into a work of art. Google’s Picasa is another good option for free photo-editing software.

Any or all of these programs will immediately add value to your Mac, PC or laptop — at absolutely no cost.

Do your homework first and check out product reviews from reputable technology sites such as CNET’s Download.com to find out more about free and safe software options before you install them on your computer.

Youth Program Aims to Curb Unemployment Among Young Adults

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – The economic recession has hit America’s youth particularly hard. Nearly 4 million of the unemployed are young people 25 and under. Many of them …

Program Teaches EMS Workers About Epilepsy

<b>Program Teaches EMS Workers About Epilepsy</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – When the average citizen sees someone pass out or start convulsing, their first instinct is probably to dial 9-1-1. Unfortunately, too many emergency medical services (EMS) personnel do not know how to recognize or treat a person experiencing a seizure.

When someone is having a seizure they often become confused, cannot communicate and do not understand or respond to questions or orders. Forceful methods of restraint, such as tasering, hog-tying, facedown holds and choke holds can put people with epilepsy in serious danger. Tragically, there have even been deaths of people who had a seizure when first responders didn’t recognize that the symptoms they were responding to were the signs of a seizure.

Nearly 3 million people live with epilepsy in the United States, so it’s especially important that first responders recognize seizure symptoms. Through a partnership with The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Epilepsy Foundation has launched a national EMS training program to give first responders the skills they need to effectively and appropriately respond to individuals having seizures.

The program, currently in pilot with select local affiliates across the country, will teach more than 600 first responders in Northern California how to appropriately respond to persons having seizures. In Alabama, four junior colleges are incorporating the curriculum into their EMS program. The Foundation is using e-mail, e-newsletters, national conference presentations and first-responder Web sites to inform as many EMS personnel as possible about this new training program.

First responders must understand the signs and intervention techniques that are appropriate for people having seizures to ensure safe and supportive emergency care for their clients.

For more information, visit www.epilepsyfoundation.org.

Cosmetology Offers Domestic Violence Victims New Path

<b>Cosmetology Offers Domestic Violence Victims New Path</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Many women who suffer from domestic violence feel powerless to remove themselves from abusive relationships because they are financially dependent on their abuser. This leads many to stay in an unhealthy or even dangerous environment.

Empire Beauty Schools, one of the nation’s largest systems of cosmetology schools, has created an educational assistance program to help these women. The Empire Gives Back Endowment Program allots money for clients of domestic violence relief organizations across the country. The endowment will provide up to $3,000 towards attending any Empire Education Group beauty school. The goal of the fund is to help abuse victims afford a cosmetology education, which can mean a path to financial independence.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field of cosmetology is projected to grow 20 percent between 2008 and 2018. And aside from its healthy job outlook, cosmetology has proven to be an answer for mothers who need a flexible job schedule that will allow for their childcare needs.

“Domestic violence affects one out of every four women, and that includes our clients and even our Empire family,” says Franklin K. Schoeneman, CEO and Chairman of Empire Education Group. “Thanks to our endowment program, students have come to us from many of the women’s shelters we support around the country, and we have witnessed first-hand how the opportunity for a cosmetology career can change a life.”

Empire is not the only organization to embrace the concept that cosmetology can be a solution for women who desperately need a lifeline. Beyoncé Knowles just opened the Beyoncé Cosmetology Center at Phoenix House, a drug and alcohol addiction-recovery center in New York. Knowles, whose mother once ran her own salon, said that she felt like the program needed something that was geared towards women.

Career assistance is only one way the salon industry helps in the fight against domestic violence. Hairstylists often share intimate client relationships, allowing them to notice signs of abuse that others may miss. Women usually see their hairdressers regularly, building trust over time, and sometimes feel more comfortable confiding in their hairdresser than family members or friends. Empire educates students on how to inform abused clients about where to get help.

“We’ve worked with the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Office on Violence Against Women to launch our Empire Gives Back awareness and fundraising program, and we are hopeful that our new endowment program will be a path to a new career and, hopefully, a new life for women in need,” said Schoeneman.

To learn more, visit www.empiregivesback.com.

Family Caregivers Face Pain Challenges

<b>Family Caregivers Face Pain Challenges</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Every day, many Americans find themselves in an unexpected new role. They become a family caregiver for a loved one suffering from chronic pain.

Experts estimate pain affects 76 million Americans, more people than diabetes, coronary heart disease, and cancer combined. Pain can interfere with daily activities, and those affected may need help from family and friends. Providing care for a loved one experiencing chronic pain presents a unique set of challenges, such as making sure your loved one reports pain to his or her healthcare provider and that your loved one’s pain is taken seriously by those who provide care.

“Each person may feel pain differently. Although it is a physical sensation, perceptions of pain are influenced by social, cultural, and psychological factors,” said Suzanne Mintz, president and CEO of the National Family Caregivers Association. “It can be difficult to make sure your loved one’s pain is evaluated appropriately.”

Unfortunately, there has been little information and few resources available to help family caregivers cope with these problems. The National Family Caregivers Association has teamed up with the national pain management education program Partners Against Pain to create Caregiver Cornerstones, a new program that provides information, encouragement, and tools to family caregivers who are caring for loved ones suffering from chronic pain.

The four Caregiver Cornerstones are:

1. Learning about pain management. Taking an active role in helping to manage a loved one’s pain may help you feel more useful and worry less.

2. Caring for a person with pain. This includes making sure that patients receive proper assessment and follow their treatment plans.

3. Caring for yourself. Being a family caregiver can be a demanding job. Allow others to help provide a support system.

4. Advocating for all people in pain. The Caregiver Cornerstones program offers guidance on raising awareness about the importance of access to appropriate and effective pain care.

More information about the Caregiver Cornerstones program and tips for caring for loved ones suffering from chronic pain can be found at www.partnersagainstpain.com.

Solving America’s Immigration Problem Will Require New Laws

<b>Solving America’s Immigration Problem Will Require New Laws</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – In this country, we have a choice on the matter of undocumented immigrants — to try in vain to enforce a broken law or to change the law to fit the needs of our country now and going forward.

We have been told by the Department of Homeland Security that we don’t have the resources to deport the estimated 13 million living in the U.S. without legal papers. And we know from the heavily publicized worksite raids in places like Bedford, Mass., and Postville, Iowa, that the resulting negative economic and human toll makes these actions counterproductive.

Some have reservations about a legalization program because it is claimed that the old Amnesty program did not work in the long run. But the old “amnesty” under the 1986 Immigration Reform & Control Act made a deadly mistake. It did not create a workable system that would allow people to enter the U.S. on worker visas or immigrate to the US in a timely manner to meet the futures needs of our economy. It also made inadequate provisions to achieve family unity.

Today, it can take six years to reunite a legal permanent resident with his or her foreign spouse and children. We need a safe, legal, orderly means for people to enter the U.S. when they have a job that can’t be filled by U.S. workers. One might ask, “Why now?” Because we know that we have to have a visa system that works in a full-employment economy as well as in our current recession. A legal work visa must be based upon a demonstrated shortage of available U.S. workers. Wages offered to both U.S. and foreign workers must be at least the average wage paid to other workers in the occupation and geographic area. The time will come when we have a situation where there are widespread workforce demands that can’t be satisfied by our domestic workforce. In the meantime, we need to create laws that allow for legal entry so that we can better secure our borders and avoid a new potential wave of uninspected immigration.

Youth Program Helps Buck Unhealthy Trend

<b>Youth Program Helps Buck Unhealthy Trend</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Research shows that as American children age, they become less active — adolescents exercise less and eat more unhealthy foods than younger children. But one program is helping adolescents, especially girls, buck this trend.

Triple Play was created in 2005 by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA), The Coca-Cola Company and Kraft Foods Inc., and endorsed by the Department of Health and Human Services. Findings show that girls taking part in Triple Play became significantly more active, increasing their daily physical activity by nearly seven minutes, while girls outside the program decreased by more than eight minutes — the weekly difference growing to nearly two hours more activity for girls participating in Triple Play.

The government recommends that children get 60 minutes of exercise a day. By the end of a two-year study, Triple Play youth increased their physical activity to 90 percent of the federally recommended amount, while peers outside the program decreased to 78 percent. “So many kids, especially girls, end up spending more time shopping or at the food court in the mall than working out in the gym,” said Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson, 17, Triple Play’s Ambassador for Action. “So it’s encouraging to find programs like Triple Play that turn that trend around.”

Children involved in Triple Play also increased the number of fruits and vegetables in their diet by 10 percent, while the fruit and vegetable consumption of their peers dropped approximately 21 percent.

Triple Play is open to all Boys & Girls Club members ages 6-18. The program teaches children how to eat smart, keep fit and form positive relationships so they can learn to choose a wide variety of nutritious foods in appropriate portions, enjoy being active and improve their self-esteem.

“We’re grateful for partners like Coca-Cola who can help us develop programs that work and serve as models at a time when one-third of American schoolchildren are overweight or obese, putting them at risk of health problems as they get older,” said Judith J. Pickens, senior vice president, Program & Youth Development Services, BGCA.

For more information about Triple Play, visit www.bgca.org/programs/tripleplay.asp.

Youth Development Programs Gain Momentum in Schools

<b>Youth Development Programs Gain Momentum in Schools</b>“></td>
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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Receiving a comprehensive education in today’s society requires more than leaving the educational system with knowledge about algebra or an understanding of how to write a compound sentence. Today, more than ever, leaders, educators and communities alike are looking for programs that go beyond academic education, but develop youth into well-rounded citizens.

Long before youth development programs were a growing trend in our school systems, Lions Quest, a global program of Lions Clubs International Foundation, was already helping schools and communities develop youth into strong, healthy members of society. Founded in 1984, Lions Quest is recognized by the United States Department of Education and continues to be a leader among positive youth development programs.

Comprehensive programs that center on positive youth development provide adolescents with the essential skills to help them lead healthier lifestyles, resist drug use and develop a positive self-image. As children today continue to be confronted with pressures at earlier ages, incorporating programs that educate them about these issues is essential.

The Lions Quest program centers its curriculum on social and emotional learning. The foundation of a student’s success in school, work and life is closely tied to social and emotional learning. Service-learning is another core focus of Lions Quest, demonstrating to youth the importance of serving others.

Results show that Lions Quest youth have experienced up to a 50 percent decrease in bullying, while increasing their connectedness to school 100 percent. In addition, students’ use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs was reduced or remained stagnant as a result of the program.

Each year, 3.8 million children throughout the U.S. benefit from Lions Quest in their school or community, demonstrating the long history of the program in developing healthy, strong school-aged children.

As the trend toward comprehensive education grows, Lions Quest continues to pave the way as a premier program. Through such programs, youth are better equipped to resist drugs and alcohol, discover a commitment to serving their community through service and develop into the leaders of tomorrow.

Visit www.lions-quest.org for more information about the Lions Quest program.