RRARA Community Update: 3/15/16

By | Uncategorized | No Comments
Inline image 1
Next meeting Reminder- Wednesday, March 16th from 8:30 -10 AM at Fife Creek Commons,16376 Fifth Street, Guerneville
March Meeting Speakers: Learn about and discuss important issues with:

Jennielynn Holmes, Catholic Charities Director of Shelter and Housing

Pauline Richardson, Manager Maternal, Child and Adolescent Health Home Visiting Programs Sonoma County Department of Health Services

Other meeting agenda items:
  • Update and feedback on ongoing Affiliated Strategies
  • Community Updates.
Community Activities and Opportunities
 

Time running out to comment on State Park’s Sonoma Coast parking-fee plan: The time for the public to weigh in before the California Coastal Commission reviews the California State Parks’ plan to install pay stations at beaches along the Sonoma Coast is running out. The Coastal Commission will hold a public hearing in Santa Rosa in April, where the issue may be decided. The decision will have statewide significance and could result in additional fees in undeveloped lots, lower standards for environmental review of state park projects and reduced access to the coastline.  Anyone who cares about this issue can gather more information at sonomacoast.surfrider.org. Even more important: Contact your legislators and provide written comment by March 25 to sonomastateparksappeal@coastal.ca.gov.

Grant Writing and Administration mentors for SSU Masters in Public Administration students: The SSU course, “Grant Writing and Administration,” offered through the Masters in Public Administration program is looking for mentors. Your organization will receive a master proposal for this program, master letter of inquiry for this program, and five new foundation prospects. Expressions of interest from nonprofits and government agencies with a staff person experienced in grant writing are due no later than March 25. Contact the professor, Judy Kunofsky at kunofsky@jmjline.com. More info here

Russian River Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence Quinceañera: Fifteenth anniversary celebration will be held on March 25th at the Rio Theater. Please join us for music by the Hubbub Club Marching Band, Miss Netty Machete ,and the Russian River Sisters, and the grants award ceremony, blessings & saintings. Cocktails at 5:00pm at the Rio Cafe. Festivities begin at 6:00pm at the Theater.

Forestville Fire Department Blood Drive: Tuesday, March 22, 2016 from 2:00 PM – 6:00 pm. Blood Centers of the Pacific Bloodmobile will be at the Station at 6554 Mirabel Road. To schedule your lifesaving appointment, visit bloodheroes.com, click “Locate a Blood Drive”& enter sponsor code: Forestville. For additional help please call (707) 280-2563.

Forestville Creative Sonoma “Coffee and Conversation” meeting at Gerald Huth Fine Arts Studio: Creative Sonoma is a new county-wide initiative established to support and advance the creative community of Sonoma County, from individual artists and arts organizations to creative businesses such as graphic designers, architects, culinary arts and artisans. These meetings are taking place throughout the County to learn about both the assets and concerns of our diverse creative communities.This is an opportunity for the creative community of Forestville and surrounding communities to help us shape the direction of Creative Sonoma and define how we will measure our collective success going forward. Monday March 28, 2016 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM. To learn more and RSVP, please click this link. SPACE IS LIMITED.

Give Back Tuesday for the Russian River Chamber of Commerce – Stumptown Daze Parade Fund: Tasty potluck buffet for just $5/plate, and a large raffle. All proceeds from the potluck & raffle, and 10% of bar sales goes to the Russian River Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center #StumptownDazeParade Fund. Tuesday, April 19th from 5 PM – 9 PM at the Rainbow Cattle Company.

Employment Opportunity: Stewards is currently taking applications for Service Aides in Armstrong Redwoods State Natural Reserve and Austin Creek State Recreation Area, Guerneville, CA. Seasonal position 24 to 40 hours a week. Stewards is seeking a qualified candidate, or candidates, to assist our organization in the daily park operational tasks.  Job duties will be to help staff the entrance kiosk at Armstrong Redwoods, collecting day use fees, counting and reconciling moneys collected, answering phone calls and questions, registering campers, and deal tactfully with public.  Job duties also include campground maintenance, including the bathroom cleaning, trash pickup, general janitorial, and road/trail maintenance tasks.More information here

News:
 

Mapping America’s distressed communities, zip code by zip code: According to this metric termed as an “analysis of community well-being across the United States”, the most distressed zip codes in Sonoma County appear to be in the Russian River area. The Distressed Communities Index mapped how each zip code was faring based on the following metrics: education, housing vacancy, employment rate, poverty rate, median income ratio, employment trends and number of business establishments. Zoom in on the map here

 

Sonoma County supervisors make housing key priority: Press Democrat Article: Sonoma County supervisors are eying rent control, just-cause eviction policies and land-use reforms to increase affordable housing as key components of a broad and ambitious new plan to address the county’s housing crisis. Supervisors unveiled the plan in an outline of their top policy priorities for the year, with action on county’s steadily tighter housing crunch foremost on the list. Board members voiced support for moves certain to generate controversy, including stronger protections for tenants and development of new housing, both within and outside city limits. The measures are seen as possible ways to keep people in their homes and stave off steeper rent increases that are pricing out the lowest-income residents. Read article here.

 
Finding Solutions to Homelessness in a Small Town: KRCB Channel 22 Video: This video discusses some aspects of the homeless issue in Guerneville and some of what is being done. Watch here.

Community Engagement Matters (Now More Than Ever): Stanford Social Innovation Review: Data-driven and evidence-based practices present new opportunities for public and social sector leaders to increase impact while reducing inefficiency. But in adopting such approaches, leaders must avoid the temptation to act in a top-down manner. Instead, they should design and implement programs in ways that engage community members directly in the work of social change. Read more here

California smoking age increase, vaping bills move to Jerry Brown: California is one step away from enacting some of its most significant tobacco legislation in decades. The state Senate on Thursday approved a far-reaching package of bills that will raise the legal purchase age to 21 from 18 and regulate e-cigarettes like a traditional tobacco product. Six measures now head to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk, where their fate is uncertain.If Brown signs the age increase, which includes an exemption for active members of the military, California will follow Hawaii as only the second state with a smoking age of 21. The Senate approved the change on a 26-10 vote. Read more here

RRARA Community Update: 2/26/16

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

rrara-logo-transparent-400

Next meeting Reminder- Wednesday, March 16th from 8:30 -10 AM at Fife Creek Commons,16376 Fifth Street, Guerneville

March Meeting Speakers: Learn about and discuss important issues with:

Jennielynn Holmes, Catholic Charities Director of Shelter and Housing

Pauline Richardson, Manager Maternal, Child and Adolescent Health Home Visiting Programs Sonoma County Department of Health Services

Other meeting agenda items:

  • Community Updates.

Community Activities and Opportunities

Russian River Area Volunteer Opportunity Database: To capture more volunteers and help connect them with meaningful volunteer opportunities we will be working with the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County to develop a Russian River Area Volunteer Opportunity Database. We are optimistic that we will be able to get this database ready by mid-March and if so we will most likely plan a volunteer recruiting event in April, which is National Volunteer Month. If you have not already and would like to list volunteer opportunities on the list please reply to this email.

Recruiting for Community Organizing Model Workshop: RRARA would like to take a team to the North Bay Organizing Project’s workshop to introduce their regional community organizing model that “engages congregations, unions, environmental justice organizations and other community institutions in a struggle for fairness and equity. This workshop will provide the tools necessary to build a team that undertands the needs and concerns of the people, identifies and recruits talented leaders and, ventures into the public arena to address local issues of inequity.” The workshop is Saturday, March 5th from 10am-2pm at the United Church of Christ in Santa Rosa. If you are interested in learning more or being involved, please reply to this email. See the attached flyer for more info

Guerneville Aging Together with Pride for LGBT Seniors: To support LGBT seniors’ optimal aging, the Sonoma County Human Services Department Adult and Aging Division is hosting an eight-week group, Aging Together With Pride. Each session allows LGBT older adults to share thoughts and experiences in a safe environment, while developing strategies for accessing local resources and services comfortably.When: Saturdays, April 9-May 28, 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Where: Russian River Senior Resource Center, 15010 Armstrong Woods Road, Guerneville. Cost: A $20 fee for the series is requested, and no one turned away. Register at (707) 227-6935. For flyer click HERE

Sonoma County Community Development Committee public hearings: Two public hearings will be held to consider proposals for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), HOME Investment Partnerships, Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG), and Community Services Funding (CSF), and Low- and Moderate-Income Housing Asset Fund Services Funding (LMIHAF-Services) Programs for FY 2016-2017.Tuesday, March 8, 2016 ~ 8:30AM ~ Hearing Room at the offices of the Community Development Commission. 1440 Guerneville Road, Santa Rosa, CA

Oscar Party at the Rio Theater: Sunday February 28th, starting at 4pm. Open House to celebrate the Oscars with free admission and concessions available for sale.Watch the Oscars live on the big screen. Dress up, dress casual, or dress like a character from your favorite film! More info here.

2015 Annual Health Action Chapter Report and Health Action Impact Report: The 2015 annual report from the Health Action Chapters around the county can be found attached along with the Health Action Impact Report that includes updates from the last quarter in regards to actions and outcomes that are currently occurring within Health Action on their three main focus areas health care, education, and economic wellness.

Job Announcement: West County Community Services Executive Director: Working under the oversight of the Board of Directors, the Executive Director provides overall management, planning, vision and leadership for the organization. Link to the job desciption.
Job Opportunity- Program Coordinator for Redwood Community Health Coalition: Redwood Community Health Coalition is seeking a bilingual candidate to coordinate outreach to immigrant communities in Sonoma County.  Please see job description, attached, and forward to your contacts as appropriate.

The Graton Day Labor Center (Centro Laboral de Graton) is hiring for the position of Workforce Development Coordinator in Graton, CA.  The Workforce Development Coordinator is responsible for workforce development trainings, program management, and job development through marketing and outreach to prospective employers. The Workforce Development Coordinator is also responsible for hiring and job dispatch and serves as one of the staff organizers engaging workers in Centro Laboral de Graton’s (CLG) social justice campaigns, civic participation, worker leadership development, andcommunity relations and engagement. Full job description attached.
Social Advocates For Youth (SAY) hiring for several positions: Positions include Chief Financial Adviser, Team Lead Supervisor, Building Maintenance & more! For more information visit: https://www.saysc.org/employment-opportunities/

Several current County of Sonoma job openings for entry and professional level jobs: New jobs are posted every week, so visit the website on a regular basis.New positions include:Community Engagement Manager, Account Clerk, Administrative Coordinator – Independent Office of Law Enforcement Review & Outreach, Voter Registration Clerk, & many more! Visithttp://www.yourpath2sonomacounty.org/ and click on Current Job Opportunities to view listings.

Volunteer opportunity: Become A Tutor, Change A Life: Join more than 600 of your friends, colleagues and neighbors as a Schools of Hope tutor and make a difference in a child’s life today! Schools of Hope is an early intervention model for children who are struggling with reading. Volunteer tutors spend 30 minutes per week tutoring a 1st or 2nd grade student in Sonoma County including schools in: Cloverdale, Cotati, Geyserville, Guerneville, Forestville, Petaluma, Santa Rosa, Sonoma, and Windsor. To learn more about the importance of education and United Way’s Schools of Hope visit:  www.unitedwaywinecountry.org or contact Education Program Officer Andrew Leonard at 707-528-4485 x141 or Andrew.leonard@unitedwaywinecountry.org.

Volunteer opportunity: Help others Earn It! Keep It! Save It!: A little of your time can help local hard working individuals and families see a big return. Volunteer opportunities are available at tax sites in Petaluma, Rohnert Park, Santa Rosa, Windsor, Cloverdale, Guerneville, & Sonoma Valley. They are actively recruiting volunteers to become Tax Preparers, greeters, interpreters, resource coaches, and outreach volunteers. who assist taxpayers with their tax returns during tax season. Learn more about the program and how to volunteer, by visiting www.unitedwaywinecountry.org or calling (707) 528-4485

News:

Income gap growing in Sonoma County: Press Democrat Article:  The gap between the wealthiest people in Sonoma County and everyone else is not only vast but also has widened significantly over the past quarter-century, according to a new report. The top 1 percent of households in Sonoma County saw their average annual income rise 40.8 percent between 1989 and 2013, while the remaining 99 percent of households saw their average incomes decline 10.4 percent during the same period, according to the report by the California Budget and Policy Center, a Sacramento think tank.  Read more here:

Debate Over Homelessness Grows In Guerneville: CBS News Video and article: But, while there’s a real sharp and often bitter divide over what caused the problem, and how to fix it – there is one area of consensus. “It’s about the river, and taking care of the river and keeping the stuff from going out into the ocean.  It’s the environment that getting impacted,” Sonoma County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ray Basurto said. See more here

Novel Healdsburg program would improve properties while keeping rents down: Press Democrat Article: With Healdsburg officials reminded by activists at nearly every meeting about the high cost of housing, the City Council is considering a novel program that would loan landlords money for critical repairs to their properties as long as they didn’t exorbitantly raise rents. “It’s a great first effort,” Mayor Tom Chambers said of the rental unit rehabilitation program that would offer landlords as much as $3,500 per unit for repairs, up to a maximum of three units per property owner, and forgive the debt if they don’t raise the rent more than 3 percent annually over three years. Read article here

RRARA Community Update: 2/17/15

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

Next meeting Reminder- Thursday, February 18th from 8:30 -10 AM at Fife Creek Commons,16376 Fifth Street, Guerneville

February Meeting Speakers: Learn about and discuss important issues with:

Al Lerma and Heather LoBue, Business Assistance and Business Services Program Managers at the Sonoma County Economic Development Board

Davin Cárdenas, Lead Organizer with the North Bay Organizing Project

Other meeting agenda items:

  • Five year visioning process to inform our planning process, identify resources we would need to reach our vision and also inform Health Action’s five year plan to create a healthier Sonoma County.
  • Community Updates.

Russian River area Volunteer Coordination Meeting: We will be having a volunteer coordination action planning session after the next RRARA meeting. The planning session is scheduled for Thursday, February 18th at Fife Creek Commons from 10-11am.  Lori Norcia, a program Director at the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County will be leading the planning session. If you are planning to attend, it would be helpful if you could resppond to this email so that we can plan accordingly.

Community Activities and Opportunities
State Parks Meeting on Parking Fees at the Sonoma Coast: Tonight, Wednesday, 2/17 from 6:30-8:30pm at the Sebastopol Community Center. This may be the last chance to make public comment before a proposal is sent to the Coastal Commission. Learn more here.

Creative Sonoma: Coffee and Conversation in Guerneville: In case you missed it, Creative Sonoma held a  “Coffee and Conversation” convening at the Guerneville Regional Library last week. This was an opportunity for the creative community of Guerneville, West County and the Sonoma Coast to help them shape the direction of Creative Sonoma and define how they will measure their collective success. If you have any issues, suggestions or ideas related to art or creativity in Sonoma County and the Russian River area please feel free to share at this email- creativesonoma@sonoma-county.org. To sign up for Creative Sonoma’s email list click here.

Russian River Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence grant Cycle Open: Applications must be submitted by 11:59pm on March 11, 2016. Grants are available to local,under-funded charitable groups and civic-minded organizations, such as small grass roots organizationsthat receive little, if any, government or mainstream funding. They are especially attracted to progressive projects that promote wellness, identity, tolerance and diversity within communities in the Russian River Area. For more information and to apply click Here.

Forestville School Early Literacy Faire on March 30th: Community event for parents of 0-5 children. The goal for the event is to reach as many parents as possible and expose them to all the resources that are available to them. If your organization would like to participate email Talin Tamzarian at ttamzarian@forestvilleusd.org.

Stewards Volunteer Orientations, Trainings & Seminars: Would you like to explore tidepools along our coast with your children, friends and family? Would you like to know more about the marine mammals that inhabit our Sonoma Coast? Would you like to lead hikes in Spanish and be trained to share redwood ecology with your group? We are in search of volunteers and interested parties! For more information or to register for one of their events, call 707.869.9177 ext. 6# ! For flyer click HERE

 

Great Russian River Race May 21st: The Race Course for the 6th annual Great Russian River Race will be moved downstream with the Finish Line located at Johnson’s Beach in Guerneville.  They are still working out the location for the start of the shorter race, but the longer race will depart from Steelhead Beach in Forestville and is roughly 9 miles. Tickets will go on sale mid-March, so stay tuned and mark your calendars for May 21st! This race is a fundraiser for Russian Riverkeeper. I If you would like to be a  sponsor please return the Sponsor Form ASAP!

Sonoma County Library needs public input to implement its new strategic plan. Due to decreased revenues and the increasing costs of books and materials, Sonoma County Library hours have been cut by 25% since 2011. These funding cuts have reduced overall access to our libraries and to the many educational classes and resources for the 30,000+ school and pre-school children who use our libraries each year. Recently the library conducted an independent survey of residents that where 77% of respondents surveyed would support a local funding measure to maintain, restore, and enhance library services. Help the library prioritize services by completing the attached Community Feedback Form. See the attached FAQ for more information.

Job Announcement: Community Engagement Manager: The Sonoma County Human Services Department is seeking an experienced professional with exceptional analytical skills to fill one full-time vacancy assigned to the Office of the Director under Planning, Research, Evaluation andEngagement (PREE) of the human Services Department (HSD). The emphasis of this position is on community engagement.  Bilingual, English-Spanish candidates are encouraged to apply. $31.51 – $38.30 Hourly. Closing date: February 28th. For full job description click HERE

 

Job Announcement: Resource Connector Worker: The non-exempt, full-time, Resource Connector Worker is the primary service provider for clients referred to the Resource Assistance Program. Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Santa Rosa, a non-profit and the largest human services provider in the North Bay, serves the most vulnerable regardless of their religious, social, or economic background. $15.00 – $18.00 Hourly. Closing date: Open until filled. For full job description click HERE

 

News:

California State Parks downsizes Sonoma Coast beach fee proposal: Press Democrat Article:  Faced with a public backlash, California State Parks has downsized its proposal for expanding the number of beaches on the Sonoma Coast where day-use fees are charged. The state agency, which had been pushing to install self-pay stations at 14 beaches along 35 miles of coastline, now is seeking to do so at only three locations: Shell Beach, Stump Beach and Freezeout Creek. In addition, three manned fee-collection stations would be constructed at Bodega Head, Goat Rock and Willow Creek under the state’s proposal. Read more here:

Why Sonoma County Workers Can’t Afford the Rent: Sonoma County Gazette Article: A widening gap between declining incomes and rising rents is fueling two powerful movements in the Golden State: one to raise the wage floor for low-wage workers, and another to control rents and increase funding for affordable housing. According to the California Housing Partnership Corporation, a combination of falling incomes and high rents is driving the worst rental-housing crisis in California since World War II. Between 2000-2014 in California adjusted median household income fell 8 percent while median rents jumped 20 percent. During this timeframe Sonoma County‘s median renter income dropped by 9 percent and median rents increased by 17 percent. As a result, a record number of renters in the state and the county cannot afford housing costs. In Sonoma County in 2014, 56 percent of renter households spent more than 30 percent of their income on rent, and 30 percent of county households were severely cost burdened, spending more than 50 percent on rent. Read more here

Sonoma County coalition awarded $8 million grant for water conservation work: Press Democrat Article: A coalition of Sonoma County resource agencies has been awarded $8 million in federal funds to advance an ambitious series of conservation projects intended to improve water supply and quality and enhance wildlife habitat on local agricultural lands. The efforts will take in vineyards and farmland and aim to reduce erosion, boost stream flows and groundwater and clean up the Russian River and its tributaries while restoring habitat for imperiled fish and wildlife species. Read more here:

RRARA Community Update: 2/4/15

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

Next meeting Reminder- Thursday, February 18th from 8:30 -10 AM at Fife Creek Commons,16376 Fifth Street, Guerneville

February Meeting Speakers: Learn about and discuss important issues with:

Al Lerma and Heather LoBue, Business Assistance and Business Services Program Managers at the Sonoma County Economic Development Board

Davin Cárdenas, Lead Organizer with the North Bay Organizing Project

Other meeting agenda items:

  • Five year visioning process to inform our planning process, identify resources we would need to reach our vision and also inform Health Action’s five year plan to create a healthier Sonoma County.
  • Community Updates.

Russian River area Volunteer Coordination Meeting: We will be having a volunteer coordination action planning session after the next RRARA meeting. The planning session is scheduled for Thursday, February 18th at Fife Creek Commons from 10-11am.  Lori Norcia, a program Director at the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County will be leading the planning session. If you are planning to attend, it would be helpful if you could resppond to this email so that we can plan accordingly.

Community Activities and Opportunities

Participate in the West Sonoma County Unified High School District Career Fair: The purpose of this event is to connect organizations and local high school students from El Molino, Analy and Laguna and expose them to the many employment, career and volunteer opportunities available to them locally.  Career Fair registration form can be completed at this link: Please RSVP no later than Friday, March 18th, 2016. Space is limited! Analy High School Main Gym on Thursday, March 31st from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

Creative Sonoma Advisory Board Opportunity: Creative Sonoma, a division of Sonoma County’s Economic Development Board, opened up the recruitment process for individuals who are interested in serving on its first Advisory Board. The Creative Sonoma AdvisoryBoard is an advisory group to Creative Sonoma and the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors and consists of up to 11 members. Board members are appointed to a two-year term, renewable one time. For full position description click HERE. For Press Release click HERE. For more information contact Kristen Madsen Kristen.Madsen@sonoma-county.org (707) 565-6120

Documentary Series: The Raising of America: Early Childhood and the Future of Our Nation: The 5-part documentary series which explores how a strong start for all our kids can lead to a healthier, stronger and more equitable America can be viewed for free February 1st  – 15th at www.raisingofamerica.org. Here’s a 30 second video trailer!  http://raisingofamerica.org/raising-america-30secondtrailer. More background, video clips, Tookits, interactives and more at www.raisingofamerica.org

Guerneville School Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) and Resource Fair- Share in an exciting evening on Feb. 24 from 5:30 -7:00 in the school library. Families are invited to come and see the progress they are making on their  LCAP (annual plan) and to seek their input for future next steps. It is also an opportunity for organizations to share community resources, describe the services they provide, etc. They would love to have a table/space for you! Please let Superintendent Dana Pedersen (dpedersen@guernevilleschool.org) know if you can attend. They would love to have their partners there sharing their services and helping learn how we can further serve their kids!

Clean River Alliance RIver Clean-up Events: Let’s Get Trashed Guerneville Town Clean up. Every Monday 4-6pm @ the Guerneville Town Square.For more info or to talk trash call Chris @ 707-322-8304

Russian RIver Health Center fire update: West County Health Center’s most recent press release (1/22/16) is attached. There are a couple *new* items on the Fire Frequently Asked Questions  page that can be seen here- http://www.wchealth.org/news/Russian-River-Health-Center-Fire-Recovery. West County Health Center has established a Community Outreach Office at 16350 3rd Street in Guerneville (next door to Higher Grounds Coffee Shop) which is down the street from the Russian River Health Center where people can drop-in for more information.

News:

Forestville resident devoted to keeping Russian River clean: Press Democrat article: Forestville resident Chris Brokate has become a master of the before-and-after shot. His “before” photos typically feature expanses of trash and debris of every size, shape and material that has been ground into riverbanks, hangs in trees and is stashed behind buildings and under local bridges. The “after” pics? Land and beaches swept clean of soiled clothing, damp cardboard, torn bedding, waste paper, cigarette butts and other trash, more than 10 tons of it removed from the Russian River watershed in January alone. .In the past several months, he has mobilized dozens of people in lower Russian River communities for regular cleanup events, including some of the homeless whose encampments are among the most challenging work sites. Read more here.

Stuck in squalor: Hundreds of Sonoma County renters endure poor living conditions: Press Democrat: Squalid conditions have been reported in hundreds of housing units across the county, mostly in apartment complexes, public records show. Complaints by tenants to city and county code enforcement agencies, analyzed and tracked over the past six months by The Press Democrat, detail chronic problems with mold, infestations by rodents and other vermin, inadequate heating and broken plumbing — conditions that qualify as “substandard” under state laws meant to prevent people from living in slum housing. Inspectors say it is impossible to keep up with complaints against offending landlords. Read more here.

‘High-impact’ step for schools: Help students get health insurance, feds say: EDSource Article: Lengthy, complicated and expensive programs are used in schools every day to improve student performance, but last week the U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services kept it simple. If schools want to take one action to boost student attendance, health, behavior and learning, they should help uninsured students enroll in health insurance, the departments said. Read more here.

Ethnic studies classes in S.F. surprisingly successful: San Franciso Chronic:Taking a ninth-grade ethnic studies course boosted the grades, attendance and course completion rates of San Francisco students who started high school with an academic record that indicated future failure, according to a newly released Stanford University study. In fact, the academic benefits of the course were so significant, the researchers who conducted the Stanford study said they were shocked by their own findings.The study found struggling students who took ethnic studies went on to compile a C-plus average in their freshman year, compared with a D average for similar students who didn’t take such a course. The ethnic studies students completed four more semester courses than the other students and had nearly perfect attendance, the Stanford researchers found. Read more here.

RRARA Community Update: 1/25/15

By | Uncategorized | No Comments
Next meeting Reminder- Thursday, February 18th from 8:30 -10 AM at Fife Creek Commons,16376 Fifth Street, Guerneville
Community Activities and Opportunities
 
Russian River Watershed Workshop Hosted by the State Water Board: Today, January 26th 3pm-7pm: Opportunity for anyone interested in opportunities to improve water supply reliability and restoring fish-bearing streams. Attendees will learn about water rights, filling out applications for water rights and streambed alterations; local fisheries; flow enhancement actions under the state Water Action Plan; and funding opportunities for offstream water storage and habitat enhancement. North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board Hearings Room, 5550 Skylane Boulevard, Suite A, Santa Rosa, CA 95404. For more information, contact Dan Worth,daniel.worth@waterboards.ca.gov, (916) 341-5324
Clean River Alliance RIver Clean-up Events:  Yesterday they removed Approx.1600 pounds from the banks of Dutch Bill Creek and the Russian River. Lower Russian River and Beach cleanup on Saturday Jan. 30th. Meeting at Goat Rock at 10 am till 1 pm. Let’s Get Trashed Guerneville Town Clean up. Every Monday 4-6pm @ the Guerneville Town Square.For more info or to talk trash call Chris @ 707-322-8304
Help Prepare a meal for the West County Winter Shelter: If you would like to join RRARA members in preparing a dinner for the West County Winter Shelter, please provide your availability at this Doodle here to identify which date would work best. There is a kitchen we can use to prepare the meal. If you are interested in organizing another time to prepare a meal contact Debra @ 869-4215 for more information.

Post volunteer opportunities and search for opportunities on the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County’s online database: Volunteers can create a profile, search for opportunities, and view your upcoming events. Community-Based Organizations can post their opportunities to share with potential volunteers. Register your organization here or register yourself as a volunteer or search for opportunities here.

Covered California Enrollment Open through January and Medi-Cal Enrollment is Year-Round: The 2016 enrollment period for Covered California health insurance runs Nov. 1 through Jan. 31, 2016. Residents can apply for coverage on the State exchange online at sonoma-county.org/healthcarereform/ and mybenefitscalwin.org, or in-person through at the County Human Services Dept. Economic Assistance offices and various locations throughout the County, including the Redwood Community Health Clinics. See the online listing ofenrollment locations, or call Economic Assistance at (877) 699-6868.

Local actions urgently needed for increasing access to early care and education: As you may know, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors priorities for 2015 included ‘Universal Access to Preschool’. The Board has a retreat planned for January 29th where they will be deciding their priorities for 2016.  Hearing from their constituents is important.  If you would like to see this continue to be a priority in Sonoma County, you can take one or more of the following actions: Before January 29th, email or call your supervisor and ask them to keep Preschool and Early Care and Education a priority for 2016. On February 2nd, First 5 Sonoma County and the Department of Health Services will be on the Board of Supervisor’s consent calendar for a Preschool Facilities Fund item.  This item requests approval for First 5 to accept additional funding into the Facilites Fund from Sonoma Wine Country Weekend and the Fort Ross Education Foundation.   Stakeholders are encouraged to show support for the Preschool Facilities Fund as well as support for increased access to high quality early education for all young children in Sonoma County.

West County Health Center Homeless Healthcare Services FAQ document: The document addresses some topics related to Health Center’s Homeless Healthcare Services, as well as the broader topic of homelessness. Link to FAQ document. The Health Center’s new Homeless Healthcare Program Manager, Jed Heibel, who drafted this document can be contacted with questions and ideas regarding how to best serve the homeless patients.

Russian River Health Center and West County Health Center Volunteer Training: There has been a huge outpouring and interest in supporting the Health Centers since the fire. There is an upcoming volunteer orientation on Wednesday, February 3rd from 1:30-4:30pm at the Forestville Wellness Center. To learn more about volunteer opportunities and the upcoming training contact Laura Moss, Community Programs Manager @ 823-3204 or lmoss@wchealth.org. See the attached flyer for more info.

Register Now! Sonoma County Food Forum, March 17th: It’s been 4 years since Sonoma County’s landmark Healthy & Sustainable Food Action Plan (FAP) became our shared vision for our local food system. We invite you to join your fellow community leaders to celebrate what has been accomplished to implement this vision, and to help shape the next phase of the FAP. Learn more and reserve your spot HERE.

RRARA Website Launch: The Russian River Area Resources and Advocates (RRARA) is excited to announce the official launch of our website at http://www.rrara.org/. Please have a look and let us know if you have any suggestions. Also, if you would like to add your organization’s logo to the Partner page please respond to this email. We look forward to identifying how this website can best serve ours the community’s purposes. We would also like to thank Anselm McClain with Extremely Heavy Industries for his help with developing the site.

Join the 10 Week WellnessChallenge! Starting January 25th St. Joseph Health is excited to offer 3 Live Healthy Wine Country challenges in 2016. The first employer and community challenge will be their 3rd annual 10 Week Wellness Challenge. Registration will be open through February 5th. Last year over 1,500 people participated in the Live Healthy Wine Country Challenges including 28 local businesses and organizations. Grab your friends, family and co-workers or participate individually and let the 10 Week Wellness Challenge help you get moving to reach your fitness goals in this new year. To register or for more information visit: www.LiveHealthyWineCountry.org
VA contact with housing vouchers for Vets: Heather Dunn, Social Worker doing work with HUD VASH program for the Santa Rosa VA clinic has housing vouchers for vets. Her contact info is Phone: 707-569-2458 Cell: 707-373-7505 Fax: 707-569-2323 Email: heather.dunn@va.gov
News:
 

Homeless arrests up since town meeting: Sonoma West Times and News: Several street people in Guerneville and Monte Rio were arrested or cited last week on charges that included vehicle theft, drug use, obstructing a law enforcement officer and occupying a condemned building. The arrests came in the aftermath of a town meeting and a demonstration in Guerneville last week addressing problems associated with homeless Russian River residents. Coincidentally on Friday, a rally in the Guerneville town plaza drew about four dozen demonstrators protesting what they say is an influx of people committing misdemeanors including littering, public drinking, drug use and trespassing. Passing drivers on Main Street. last Friday evening honked in support as demonstrators waved picket signs that said “Save the River,” “Save Guerneville” and “We are taking back our town.” Article here.

Stuck in squalor: Hundreds of Sonoma County renters endure poor living conditions:Press Democrat: Squalid conditions have been reported in hundreds of housing units across the county, mostly in apartment complexes, public records show. Complaints by tenants to city and county code enforcement agencies, analyzed and tracked over the past six months by The Press Democrat, detail chronic problems with mold, infestations by rodents and other vermin, inadequate heating and broken plumbing — conditions that qualify as “substandard” under state laws meant to prevent people from living in slum housing. Inspectors say it is impossible to keep up with complaints against offending landlords. Link to article

BUILDING A DREAM CENTER: KRCB Video: How do people come together to create positive change in our community? Social Advocates for Youth (SAY) was founded in 1971 to serve homeless youth with housing and career development opportunities. As the need grew for larger facilities and expanded programs, SAY created unique partnerships to open the “Dream Center,” repurposing the former Warrack Hospital in Santa Rosa. Many area residents were concerned about this addition to their neighborhood. This video explores how people with differing opinions and viewpoints can work together for the civic good and find solutions and pathways to success for a stronger community. Watch video here.


How to Bridge That Stubborn Pay Gap: New York Times: More than a half-century after President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act, the gender pay gap is still with us. Women earn 79 cents for every dollar men earn, according to the Census Bureau.So what might work to close the gap? Social scientists and policy makers have some ideas, as do companies that have been trying to combat the problem in their work forces. Article here

The unbending arc: America’s race gap is stuck: Brookings: America is in danger of becoming stuck, with insufficient social, geographical, or economic mobility. Poverty persists across generations. Half of the black children born on the bottom rung of the income ladder (the bottom quintile) will stay there as adults. A boy who grows up in Baltimore will earn 28 percent less simply because he grew up in Baltimore. Sixty-six percent of black children live in America’s poorest neighborhoods, compared with six percent of white children. Link to article

Community Update- 1/7/16

By | Meetings, News | No Comments

Next meeting Reminder – Wednesday January 20th, from 8:30 -10 AM at Fife Creek Commons,16376 Fifth Street, Guerneville

December Meeting Speaker – Donata Mikulik, Volunteer & Community Services Manager at the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County
Learn more about the Volunteer of Sonoma County and discuss opportunities for volunteer coordination in the lower Russian River area.
Emmanuel Moon, Community Benefit Coordinator for the United Way of the Wine Country will also share information about Earn it! Keep It! Save It! and Schools of Hope a couple of their volunteer driven programs in the lower Russian River area. There will also be an update about RRARA’s efforts to bolster the Russian River Senior Center Volunteer Driver Program.
Updates and discussion of RRARA and community activities.

Community Activities and Opportunities

Community Meeting for discussion and information about current community issues on the lower Russian River: Monday, January 11, 2016 at 5:30 pm at the Guerneville School Auditorium. The three main topics for discussion will be: the homeless/housing, health and public safety concern, and environmental issues.

Elected Officials and Community Leaders present will be:

  • Sonoma County 5th District Supervisor, Efren Carrillo,
  • Sonoma County Sheriff, Steve Freitas,
  • Sonoma County District Attorney, Jill Ravitch,
  • Sonoma County Community Development Commission Deputy Director, John Haig,
  • West County Health Centers Executive Director, Mary Szecsey,
  • West County Community Services Executive Director, Donna Roper
  • Russian River Fire Protection District Fire Chief, Max Ming
  • Russian River Chamber of Commerce President, Debra Johnson

Prepare a meal for the West County Winter Shelter: If you would like to join RRARA members in preparing a dinner for the West County Winter Shelter, please provide your availability at this Doodle here to identify which date would work best. There is a kitchen we can use to prepare the meal. If you are interested in organizing another time to prepare a meal contact Debra @ 869-4215 for more information.

Date Correction: The Sonoma County Early Learners Conference: A day of learning for all those working with children ages birth to twelve years: Infant/Toddler and Preschool Teachers, Family Child Care Providers, Transitional Kindergarten Teachers, Afterschool Staff, ECE students, etc. Is on Saturday, March 5, 2016 8:30am – 4:00pm @ Sonoma State University. More info here.

Immediate job opening with Restorative Resources: The program involves ongoing restorative dialogue with youth who have been experiencing behavioral issues at schools. The Somos circles of up to 10 youth will focus on positive individual and communal transformation and will include rites-of-passage elements to maximize the effects of restorative justice on individual maturation. See SOMOS JOB DESCRIPTION

News

Guerneville to talk fires and homelessness: Sonoma West Times and News Article: A series of unexplained fires including the blaze that destroyed the Russian River Health Center are expected to attract a big turnout of River residents at a Guerneville town meeting next Monday.The Jan. 11 meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. in the Guerneville School all-purpose room and will bring in 5th District Sonoma County Supervisor Efren Carrillo, Sonoma County Sheriff Steve Freitas and Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch to meet with River residents concerning the fires, homeless issues and a sentiment in Guerneville that no one seems to be in charge. Read here.

Russian River Health Center scrambles to maintain services after arson fire: Press Democrat Article: With their 30-year-oldcommunity clinic destroyed by an arsonist, medical staff at the Russian River Health Center in Guerneville are scrambling to maintain services to the 3,500 patients who relied on the charred clinic. Staff members have set up a mobile medical trailer across the street from the fire-gutted clinic to serve patients who cannot drive or find transportation to Sebastopol, where they have temporarily claimed space in two sister clinics. Eventually, West County Health Centers wants to rebuild the Third Street clinic, its flagship facility. But for now, it is sending patients to Sebastopol and treating patients in Guerneville inside a cramped mobile unit with two exam rooms, just enough to accommodate the patients for a single physician. Read more here.

CDC: Youth exposure to electronic cigarettes ads contributing to use: Washington’s Top News Article: Children in the United States are seeing lots of ads for e-cigarettes — and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that is one big reason why the use of e-cigs is soaring among the young. A new CDC report says seven in 10 middle and high school students have seen these advertisements which — like cigarette ads of yore — use themes of sex, independence and rebellion to sell their products. “The e-cigarette advertising we’re seeing is like the old-time Wild West; no rules, no regulations and heavy spending,” says CDC Director Tom Frieden. Read more here.

Santa Rosa, Guerneville, Vallejo rank high in LGBT rights: North Bay Business Journal: Santa Rosa, Guerneville and Vallejo have received high marks from the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization for legal protections including being at risk of being fired, being denied housing or refused service, and benefits. The Human Rights Campaign released its fourth annual report assessing LGBT equality in 408 cities across the nation, including 55 in California. The average score for cities in California was 73 out of 100 points, which falls above the national average of 56. Santa Rosa came in with 86 points; Guerneville with 81; and Vallejo with 70. Read more here.

Clean River Alliance aligns with Russian Riverkeeper: Sonoma West Times and News: Marking its one-year anniversary, the Clean River Alliance is proud to announce that Russian Riverkeeper, the nonprofit river steward group for more than 28 years, is now the fiscal sponsor of the alliance. Starting this month, residents can support the Clean River Alliance’s efforts by donating to Russian Riverkeeper with a note, “Clean River Alliance” or “river clean up” on the bottom of the check to ensure donations go to river clean up efforts. Read more here.

Attend the next RRARA Meeting Check the schedule...