We are reminded once again that depression is NOT a normal part of aging; agitation, irritability, significant changes in thinking, judgment, and perception can be the result of isolation, poorly balanced nutrition, changes in metabolism or other body systems, and these issues can be addressed and improved.
Not Alone’s visitors on this broadcast introduced the GOALS Center, or the Greater Omaha Attendance and Learning Services Center. The mission of the Learning-Community wide program is twofold: first, it is designed to encourage youngsters and families as they identify and overcome hindrances preventing regular school attendance. Secondly, they are assisting as the families implement workable plans that encourage their students to stay engaged in school until graduation.
We’re always pleased when we can pass along congratulations to people and organizations inspiring a higher level of mental health care opportunities in Nebraska. The Executive Director of the Nebraska Families Collaborative (NFC), Dave Newell, was just accepted to the Twentieth-Anniversary Fellowship Class of the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The program will be intense and involves a large commitment of time and energy on Dave’s part, but he is the kind of leader who will invest in the challenge. The Casey Foundation Fellowships increase the pool of leaders with vision, drive, and ability to create and sustain major system reforms and community initiatives for benefitting large numbers of children and families. During this twenty-month process, Dave and the 15 other Fellows, will work toward specific, measurable improvements for children and families.
Our Not Alone guest, Lila Starr, is an amazing lady, representing older persons mental health needs. Her message educated us on the emergence of the elderly as the top group needing mental health care. Our older people are suffering in untold numbers the effects of depression and anxiety, which many people erroneously consider a ‘normal part of aging.’ People living for many years with diagnosed mental health challenges are living healthier, longer lives because of advances in medication, and recognition of the need for healthy eating and exercise. However, there is not yet consistent research to demonstrate the needs of people with psychiatric disorders on their changing bodies as they become seniors.
We always welcome and appreciate visits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to our Not Alone broadcasts. There are so many positive opportunities relating to improving the emotional health of our veterans to share with listeners, we simply run out of broadcast time. On this episode, we focused on two topics: one, healing opportunities available through VA programs for the men and women veterans who have experienced Military Sexual Trauma (MST) and two, the numbers of young veterans and their families who have become homeless and the local programs initiated by the VA to locate safe and affordable housing for these families.
Not Alone welcomed friends from Epworth Village on this broadcast. Headquartered in York, NE, Epworth Village is one of Nebraska’s most respected agencies in rehabilitating troubled youth that originated as an orphanage nearly 125 years ago. It has evolved and changed as the needs of society have changed, becoming now a recognized leader and positive influence for families dealing with severe emotional and behavioral disorders in youth. Our guests were Patrick Garcia, the CEO, and staff member Jamie Cline. The goals of Epworth Village include helping youngsters and their families successfully navigate their personal challenges, their negative thinking and feelings of frustration, before these failures become a way of life and are perpetuated to the next generation.
February is supposed to be the month of hearts and flowers, of love, admiration, and respect. But, what happens when the cycle of dating abuse we are experiencing in our country expands to include pre-teens, teens, and college age students?
Again this year, we had the privilege of attending the At Ease USA luncheon to raise support for Nebraska military families experiencing the effects of trauma or emotional injury.
Walter Hudson, founder of Vet to Vet in Ohio and President of Resilience Advocacy and Associates in Ohio, and Jane Winterling, one of the outstanding writers of the Mary Ellen Copeland Wellness Center joined Not Alone today talking about WRAP plans for past and present members of the military and their family members.
From time to time we invite friends to Not Alone who have experienced a brain disorder and are willing to share their personal story as an encouragement and incentive to people living with chronic brain diseases. Sometimes it’s tough to speak of illnesses, treatments, lack of treatment, loss of family, and dreams. However, courageous people have taken the pain and isolation they once experienced and are using their life story in helping others develop opportunities to find the help they need, hope, and healing that can change lives and make them meaningful once again.