SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CA (MPG) - On Jan. 15, the Board of Supervisors approved a collaborative partnership between Sacramento County and UC Davis Health to deliver primary care, behavioral health, and some specialty services to 5,000 Medi-Cal enrollees at the County-run Federally Qualified Health Center at Broadway and Stockton Boulevard.

“Sacramento County is thrilled for this relationship with UC Davis Health,” said Supervisor Patrick Kennedy. “Together we are committed to ensuring greater access to high-quality health care in our region. UC Davis Health already provides health care services at the Sacramento County Health Center and the expansion will allow for more access to primary care and high-quality health care to Medi-Cal patients.”

Starting Feb. 1, the partnership will bring together a hospital system and Sacramento County health care providers to give coordinated, high-quality care to patients. The unique structure of the agreement is based on that of an Accountable Care Organization, where UC Davis Health provides all care for primary care and behavioral health services for enrollees at the Paul F. Hom Primary Care Facility in the Sacramento County Health Center as well as at UC Davis facilities.

“Patients will be phased in over a period of six months to the​ Paul F. Hom Primary Care Facility in the Sacramento County Health Center,” said Peter Beilenson, Director of the Department of Health Services. “These enrollees will be provided with comprehensive primary care and behavioral health services, but will also have opportunities to connect with on-site social service organizations that provide housing assistance, job placement, legal se​rvices, Medi-Cal system navigation and eligibility, and care coordination.”

This collaborative initiative has great potential for all involved:

  • For patients and community members - primary and preventive care to Medi-Cal recipients who currently have limited access to care in the County will be increased and more coordinated
  • For the Sacramento County Health Center and Sacramento County - the Health Center will be fully utilized and serve the ultimate vision of a person-centered medical and social service home for an underserved community with increased reimbursement for services provided. 

Source: Sacramento County Media

...Read More!  
  |  

Sacramento Life Center Baby Basket Drive Raises $10K To Help New Moms

By Kristin Thébaud  |  2019-03-06

Ana Alvarado receives a baby basket from Sacramento Life Center, thanks to the group’s Baby Basket Drive held each December. Photo courtesy Thébaud Communications

SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - The Sacramento Life Center’s fifth annual Baby Basket Drive for new moms raised more than $10,000 from the community in December, which will buy more than 200 baskets for Sacramento Life Center patients throughout 2019. The drive is held each December to kickstart the 500 baby baskets needed so that every Sacramento Life Center patient who gives birth in the coming year can receive a basket of needed items, including formula, diapers, newborn clothes, pacifiers and more.

Donations will be accepted throughout 2019 and can be made online at www.saclife.org by writing Baby Basket Drive in the message box on the donation page. Gifts can be made in any increment, but a donation of $50 buys one basket.

“One of the most overwhelming feelings is learning that you’re pregnant and fearing you won’t have the resources to care for your vulnerable baby,” said Marie Leatherby, executive director, Sacramento Life Center. “Sometimes something as simple as a gift of diapers and newborn clothes can give expecting mothers the confidence that they have a support system to help raise their child. These baskets give expecting mothers proof that they will always have a family here at the Sacramento Life Center and supporters out in the community rooting for their family.”

The Sacramento Life Center’s mission is to offer compassion, support, resources and free medical care to women and couples facing an unplanned or unsupported pregnancy. The Sacramento Life Center’s licensed Sac Valley Pregnancy Clinic includes a primary clinic and two Mobile Medical Clinics that provide all services for free, including pregnancy tests, STD tests, ultrasounds, peer counseling for men and women, education and resource referrals. The nonprofit also offers a school-based teen education program, a 24-hour hotline and a program for women experiencing reproductive grief. For more information about the Sacramento Life Center’s Sac Valley Pregnancy Clinic, visit www.svpclinic.com. For more information about the Sacramento Life Center or to make a donation, visit www.saclife.org

 

Source: Thébaud Communications

...Read More!  
  |  

Farley Does the Trick

By Elise Spleiss  |  2019-03-05

Detective Moranz and Farley are ready for duty. Photo courtesy Citrus Heights Police Department.

Citrus Heights Police K9 to Serve Sacramento Region

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA  (MPG) – Police K9 Farley, newest addition to the Citrus Heights Police Department (CHPD), may be performing an invaluable service, keeping illegal drugs from reaching the streets of Sacramento and beyond, but it’s all just a game of fetch to him. 

Farley is a single-purpose narcotics detection canine. The two-year old Labrador Retriever was sworn into the CHPD by Police Chief Ron Lawrence at the December 13, 2018 city council meeting.  He was assigned to work with his handler / partner Detective Dave Moranz, a 28-year veteran of police work who has been with the CHPD since its inception in 2006.

Officers Farley and Moranz are a team, assigned to the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) Narcotics Enforcement and Criminal Investigations Task Force. During their intensive five-week training, Farley was trained to sniff out and alert Detective Moranz to the ingredients in four illegal narcotics; marijuana, methamphetamines, cocaine and heroin. Farley received his official Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission (POST) certification on November 23, 2018.

After being on the job for only three months, Farley has been involved in the seizure of 40 pounds of marijuana, 9 grams of cocaine, 16 grams heroin, and 9 grams methamphetamine.

Farley begins searching for drugs only upon hearing the words, “peanut butter” spoken by his handler. As far as Farley is concerned, he is not looking for drugs, only his tennis ball. Working as a team, Farley detects the scent of the narcotic and alerts Detective Moranz by a behavioral change such as sitting close to the source of the odor of the controlled substances he is trained to alert to.  Moranz watches him while he is working an area and checks to validate what he has found. Farley is rewarded with a “good boy” and a few tosses of his tennis ball each time his mission is accomplished.

In an email, Police Chief Ron Lawrence expressed his pride in Farley’s accomplishments.  “Having Farley on our team has been a tremendous asset. He is not only an expert at sniffing out illegal drugs and helping to solve crimes, but he is also a huge hit within our community. Everyone seems to love Farley! In a very short period of time, Farley has already proven himself as a valuable member of our policing team.”

The team continues their training weekly at different locations with different trainers to keep their skills sharp. Moranz described to this reporter one search where a substance was hidden high on the wall inside a covered a key case. Farley heard his command, took off and ended up twirling in a circle towards the source of the odor of the controlled substance. He then clamped his paws onto the wall beneath the box and stared at it until rewarded for his work.

Of the five K9’s with the CHPD Farley is the only one certified for narcotics detection. K9’s Dax, Blitz, Luke and Jake are trained in officer protection, tracking and criminal apprehension.

Farley spends his off time with his handler, Dave Moranz.  Both are on-call to assist CHPD and USPIS wherever and whenever there is a need for a narcotics detection canine.  Farley has also been called out by CHPD to assist in searching for illegal narcotics and on other cases.

...Read More!  
  |  

Fresh Start's Role is to Support and Encourage

Story and photos by Trina L. Drotar  |  2019-03-05

Charlotte Stott and Melinda Avey display a starter kit offered by the Assistance League program.

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) – In 2018, Assistance League Sacramento, an all-volunteer organization of over 285 members, celebrated 50 years of service to the local community through a variety of philanthropic programs that are funded in large part by its resale thrift shop, Fabulous Finds on Fulton. Programs, which are completely local, date back to 1967 when Eyes Right was established. At least one new program has been launched in each decade since. The organization’s newest programs, Fresh Start and Reaching Out, were established in 2017.

Charlotte Stott chairs the Fresh Start committee of 50 volunteers. After reviewing several studies on community needs, which included support for victims of sex trafficking and foster youth aging out of residential care, the group chose to partner with Community Against Sexual Harm (CASH) and its RESET diversion program. The program supports training and offers peer mentoring through its eight week, no fee program.

Stott explained that Fresh Start’s role is to support and encourage the women participating in the program. At four weeks, the midway point, women receive a “way to go gift” of lip balm, hand sanitizer, and a note. Upon graduation, women receive a bag with earrings, lipstick, and acknowledgement of their effort. The gifts, Stott said, tell the women that they matter.

 Fresh Start also assists by providing hygiene products and a change of clothing including sweat pants, bra, and a top. Three apartment starter kits are provided each quarter, and this month, the volunteers began providing bags with various items including tissues.

 “We provide small birthday gifts and cards hand signed by committee volunteers,” said Stott.

To assist foster youth aging out of the system, Fresh Start provides apartment starter kits to EA Family Services and Aspiranet. According to the latter’s website, 5000 youth age out annually in California and the agency supports 1900 by collaborating with community organizations like Assistance League Sacramento. Fresh Start plans to begin providing newborn essentials to young mothers who are in foster care.

Relationships were built and established and Stott estimates that approximately 6000 people have been touched in one way or another through the efforts of Fresh Start.

Reaching Out, a smaller committee of volunteers chaired by Melinda Avey, also provides apartment starter kits, along with a host of other assistance through its collaboration with Sacramento Steps Forward, an organization committed to ending homelessness in the region through partnerships with agencies such as Assistance League.

  “We buy work boots,” said Avey. “We pay deposit and application fees. We identify small needs.”

Sacramento Steps Forward, through partnerships with other organizations, may be able to secure housing for a currently homeless individual or family, but there are additional needs that they cannot provide. These, Avey explained, are the items that Reaching Out can assist with on short notice, such as the need for an application fee for a currently available apartment. When a request comes in, the committee votes to grant the request and Avey said, “makes it happen.”

 “That is the benefit of being a non-profit, we can act immediately.”

Like Fresh Start, Reaching Out also provides apartment starter kits. Kits, Avey said contain sheets, towels, pots and pans, shower curtain and rings, and other items that most folks might take for granted.

“We give a welcome mat,” she said, and the committee provides a clock. People living on the street lose track of time, she said.

Feedback, said Avey, always includes mention of the welcome mat. Items are not random choices. The committee is guided by suggestions regarding sheet size and table settings that are requested to be for one or two, not four.

The committee has also paid for a ticket to reunite a homeless individual and her father.

“It makes our day.”

For additional information, visit Assistance League Center’s Fabulous Find s on Fulton shop at 2751 Fulton Avenue or https://www.assistanceleague.org/Sacramento.

...Read More!  
  |  

Button Show Coming March 9

By Susan Maxwell Skinner  |  2019-02-22

Faye Wolfe (left) and Susan Rhoades display some of thousands of antique and retro buttons that will be exhibited at the California Button Society’s March 9 show. Photo by Susan Skinner

CARMICHAEL, CA  (MPG)  -  Some eye-popping antiques slip easily through a buttonhole. At the California Button Society’s March 9 expo, you might snag a Civil War tunic fastener for $50. If you lust for hand-painted 18th century pieces, be prepared to unbutton your billfold.  

What astonishes at such bazaars is the availability of seriously old stuff. Snipped from long-ago rotted garments, many are thumb-nail masterpieces. “We often look at old buttons and imagine the stories they could tell,” says Button Club treasurer Susan Rhoades. “They were traded, stolen and inherited. Lives were lost in making them; pearl dust and mercury (for gold plating) killed many. “You learn so much about history, art and manufacturing from buttons.”

In the Middle Ages, no material was too grand for the button makers’ art. Georgian aristocrats later bespoke Gainsborough-style portraits – sometimes of their pets – to fasten vests. When Queen Victoria took to wearing jet specimens, society followed. Though zippers have revolutionized modern fastening, nifty little buttons have never been completely undone. “People visit our shows show seeking that one perfect item,” says Sacramento collector Faye Wolfe. “One lady brought a vest she’d sewn; she wanted buttons for it. In the end, she chose four, each different. Who says they have to match? Our button world is full of eccentricity.”

The Button Bazaar runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 9, at the La Sierra Center, 5325 Engle Rd, Carmichael. The show offers a free service for valuing buttons. Admission is by $2 donation. For information, contact fwolfe@surewest.net

...Read More!  
  |  

Hard Rock at Fire Mountain Reaches Milestone

Story and photos by Shaunna Boyd  |  2019-02-22

The workers who constructed the building from the ground up wait to see the final beam set atop the structure.

Exterior Structure Complete for Anticipated Hotel and Casino

Wheatland, CA (MPG) - The exterior of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sacramento at Fire Mountain (located at 3317 Forty Mile Road in Wheatland) is now complete. On February 13, the final steel beam was set atop the structure during a topping-off ceremony celebrating the construction efforts and the hard work and commitment of everyone involved. The project is the result of a historic partnership between the owners of Hard Rock International and two Native American Tribes—the Seminole Tribe of Florida and the Estom YumekaMaidu Tribe of the Enterprise Rancheria.

Despite a downpour of heavy rain, the event tent was crowded with people and surrounded by the workers who had constructed the building from the ground up. The day began with a performance by an all-female group of native drummers. Tribal Elder Ren Reynolds opened the ceremony with a prayer to the Great Spirit and the ceremonial lighting of sage to bless the speakers.

Mark Birtha, president of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sacramento at Fire Mountain, said, “Topping off is a major milestone, for us it denotes placing the last structural piece of steel…Today symbolizes the hope that this building will be everlasting…It is meant to celebrate the beginning of a new life, a new destination.” The property will be a destination hotel casino resort, offering gaming along with a variety of amenities and entertainment options.

Jon Lucas, chief operating officer of Hard Rock International, said, “This special day is just another milestone along the journey that’s going to get us to this world-class destination resort. We’re going to be the best in this market, and it will set us apart from the competition…It’s about delivering authentic experiences that rock… It’s the culture that we create with the brand, the personalities of the people who deliver the service like nobody else.”

Lucas explained that the experiences and the non-gaming amenities will set them apart from the competition. “We’re really excited today to reach this milestone and move on to the next phases so we can deliver a great, great product for this community that everyone will be proud of. Most importantly, it will employ over a thousand people, and that will help the economy here both indirectly and directly.”

Enterprise Rancheria Tribal Chairperson Glenda Nelson detailed the challenges the tribe has faced on their journey, such as obtaining and maintaining federal recognition and losing 40 acres of their ancestral land during construction of the Oroville Dam: “Many of you know how long the road to this day has been…We have worked diligently over the past 17 years to re-establish a land base within our aboriginal area to conduct  meaningful economic development for our citizens and for our community. Along the way, we never lost hope, we never lost our vision of who we were and where we were going. And we never lost faith that eventually truth, fairness, and justice would prevail. Today’s milestone affirms that hope, vision, and faith.”

Nelson expressed her gratitude to be working with Hard Rock International and the Seminole Tribe of Florida: “It is such a blessing to our tribe to be able to partner with another tribe that shares our same values and vision for the future of all Native Americans, and…partnering with Hard Rock is a real game changer, for our community and for tribal gaming in California.”

The project has already created more than 2,000 construction jobs in the Sacramento area. Scheduled to open later this year, the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sacramento at Fire Mountain will employ more than 1,000 people and will offer the latest in live music and entertainment, hospitality, world-class gaming, and exceptional cuisine.

...Read More!  
  |  

Women's Empowerment Receives $25K from US Bank

By Kristin Thébaud  |  2019-02-08

Lisa Culp of Women’s Empowerment receives a check from Jessica Cook of U.S. Bank for Women’s Empowerment’s career-readiness, job training and financial literacy programs for women who are homeless.  Photo courtesy Thébaud Communications

Funds will provide job skills training and financial literacy for homeless women

SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) -  Women’s Empowerment has received a $25,000 grant from U.S. Bank Foundation’s Community Possible program. The grant will fund job skills training, career-readiness classes and financial literacy programs for Sacramento women experiencing homelessness.

“U.S. Bank continues to invest in the bright futures of homeless women through its generous donations to our job-readiness programs,” said Lisa Culp, executive director, Women’s Empowerment. “Our partnership with U.S. Bank ensures women can break the cycle of homelessness by gaining the skills needed to secure employment, regain a home and manage finances. When our mothers become financially self-sufficient, they create a better life for their children.”

Since 2001, Women’s Empowerment has been working to break the cycle of homelessness for women and children in Sacramento. In the initial nine-week program, women who are homeless receive free onsite child care in the group’s child development center and transportation assistance. Each woman works with a master’s level social worker to address her root causes of homelessness. She attends classes on job-readiness, confidence building, health and empowerment, as well as support groups for domestic violence and substance abuse. Financial empowerment courses are provided, including budgeting, improving credit score and second chance checking. With the help of volunteer teachers, women unlearn financial habits and create a step-by-step action plan for achieving their financial goals. Women then focus on job placement with their employment specialist and volunteer career mentor. 

Women who have graduated from the nine-week program can enroll in the group’s graduate services at any point when they need assistance. Services include paid job training, vocational certifications, counseling with a social worker and employment specialist, access to a professional clothing closet, and job retention services for employer and employee.  

“At U.S. Bank, we invest in and support programs and organizations that help people succeed in the workforce and gain greater financial literacy,” said Jessica Cook, assistant vice president at U.S. Bank. “Through our Community Possible giving and engagement platform we are working to close the gaps between people and possibility. Our partnership with Women’s Empowerment is doing just that.”

Women’s Empowerment is an award-winning organization that has graduated 1,554 homeless women and their 3,738 children. Last year, 82 percent of graduates found homes and 76 percent found jobs or enrolled in school or training. The program combines self-esteem courses, job training, health classes and support services to help homeless women across diverse ages, races and cultures. Women’s Empowerment is funded through private donations from the community and receives no government funding except for in-kind rent from the County of Sacramento. To make a donation: www.womens-empowerment.org

Community Possible is the corporate giving and volunteer program at U.S. Bank, focused on the areas of Work, Home and Play. The company invests in programs that provide stable employment, a safe place to call home and a community connected through arts, culture, recreation and play. For more information: www.usbank.com/community.

Source: Thébaud Communications

...Read More!  
  |