Regional Asset Building Summit in Central Oregon

Neighborhood Partnerships and NeighborImpact will host the Central Oregon Regional Asset Building Summit on March 20 and 21. The summit will include a training for organizations that want to assist clients in building financial capability, and an economic summit for executive directors, local government officials and the business community.

Regional Asset Building Summits are designed to bring together financial capability experts with the other service providers in their communities to build stronger relationships and find ways to partner and leverage local resources.

For more information, contact Jill Winsor, jwinsor@neighborhoodpartnerships.org.

Posted on February 16, 2017 .

Teen volunteer program in Clark County

Youth volunteers are being sought to participate in the Vancouver VolunTEEN program.

The program, sponsored by the city of Vancouver and Clark County, offers youth 14-19 after-school service opportunities throughout Clark County.

Two-hour work parties are planned from 3:30-5:30 p.m. the second, third and fourth Thursday of each month from February-May and September-November.

Volunteers participate in activities such as invasive plant removal, trail maintenance and community center cleanup. To view a list of all spring Vancouver VolunTEEN events, visit www.clark.wa.gov/public-works/youth-projects.

To register for a VolunTEEN event, go to www.emailmeform.com/builder/form/IdB1t17zclU or call 360.397.6118 ext. 1627. Youths younger than 18 must provide a signed minor consent form, which is available at www.clark.wa.gov/public-works/youth-projects.

Posted on February 16, 2017 .

Job fair in Hillsboro

Project Employment Connect’s Feb. 10 job fair will feature networking with more than 40 employers. The free event will be from 10am to 4pm at Sonrise Church, 6701 NE Campus Way, Hillsboro. Haircuts, showers and clothing will be available.

Posted on February 7, 2017 .

Industry fair in Battle Ground

Career opportunities in Southwest Washington are the focus of the Battle Ground Public Schools Industry Fair from 5-7pm Feb. 23 at Battle Ground High School, 300 W. Main St., Battle Ground., Wash. Employers will talk about career pathways within their organizations, including jobs in healthcare, education, manufacturing, technology, construction, finance, hospitality, retail, apprenticeship, transportation and more. If you have questions, contact Kevin Doyle, doyle.kevin@battlegroundps.org.

Posted on February 7, 2017 .

Children’s Dental Clinic in Vancouver

The Clark College Dental Hygiene Program will hold a free children’s dental clinic from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 4 in the Firstenburg Dental Hygiene Education and Care Center in the Health Sciences Building on Clark College’s main campus, 1933 Fort Vancouver Way.

Clark College dental hygiene students will provide care to children younger than 18 under direct supervision of licensed dental hygienists and dentists. The free clinic will offer cleanings, sealants, X-rays, doctor’s exams, fluoride and select emergency treatments.

To schedule an appointment, call the dental hygiene business office, 360-992-2158.

This will be the 11th year the dental hygiene program has offered a free children’s dental health day.

Posted on January 30, 2017 .

Oregonians can get a larger tax refund with the Earned Income Tax Credit

Oregon has one of the lowest EITC participation rates in the country, with only 74.4
percent of eligible taxpayers claiming the credit in 2013, according to the IRS. The
Oregon Department of Human Services and the Oregon Department of Revenue
are working with other state agencies and community partners to encourage
taxpayers to learn more about this credit and find out if they’re eligible.

The EITC can mean a refund of up to $6,269 if the person filing has qualifying
children. In 2015, the average EITC refund for Oregon taxpayers was $2,136.
To be eligible, taxpayers must have earned income last year and have a valid
Social Security number (SSN). Other eligibility requirements for filers include:
· They can’t use the “married filing separate” filing status.
· Children they’re claiming on their return can’t be the qualifying child of another
person.
· They must be a U.S. citizen or resident alien for the entire year (in most
cases).
Taxpayers can use the IRS’ EITC Assistant to further check their eligibility.

Those who qualify for the EITC can also claim Oregon’s Earned Income Credit
(EIC), which is 8% of the taxpayer’s federal credit. There also are other
federal tax credits that workers may be eligible for, including the American
Opportunity Tax Credit, the Child Tax Credit, and the Additional Child Tax Credit.

Those who need help determining if they’re eligible for certain tax credits or need
assistance with filing their federal or Oregon return have some free or low-cost
options. Some companies offer free tax preparation software and e-filing for eligible
taxpayers. To see these offers, visit http://cashoregon.org/file-taxes-online/.

AARP and CASH Oregon provide free or low-cost, in-person tax preparation
services throughout Oregon. To see their locations, visit http://cashoregon.org/locations/.
People can also call 211 or visit http://211info.org/eitc to find free tax return preparation sites.

For more information on the EITC, visit www.irs.gov. For questions about Oregon
taxes, call the Department of Revenue at 503-378-4988. For questions about the
Department of Human Services call, 503-945-5600.

Posted on January 26, 2017 .

Fair Housing Council of Oregon Opens Fair Housing Poster Contest

Young artists are invited to participate in the Fair Housing Council of Oregon’sannual Fair Housing Poster Contest. The theme is “It’s Fun Having All Kinds of Neighbors.”

Oregon students in grades 1 through 8 are encouraged to design and submit posters that portray the importance of acceptance and diversity in our neighborhoods.

Top entries will receive cash awards, and the winning design will be displayed at venues throughout Oregon. Posters must be horizontally oriented on an 11”x17” sheet of white paper or poster board to qualify. Deadline for submission is 5pm March 17. Entries must be submitted before the deadline to the FHCO office, 1221 SW Yamhill St. #305, Portland, OR 97205.

For more information, visit www.fhco.org/index.php/news/poster-competition. Questions or interested in volunteering? Contact information@fhco.org 

Posted on January 20, 2017 .

Webinar on Confidentiality for Adolescents in Health Care

The School-Based Health Alliance hosts webinars to connect members of the school-based health care field with public health experts. The webinars are designed to help school-based health center practitioners provide quality health care services, build sustainable business models, and stay abreast of new topics in the health care world.

A five-part webinar series on adolescent confidentiality in health care is available through Feb. 17. Viewers can submit questions to Abigail English, director of the Center for Adolescent Health & the Law, at info@sbh4all.org with the subject line "Adolescent Confidentiality." Responses to selected questions will be posted in early March 2017.

For details, go to http://www.sbh4all.org/training/webinars/

Posted on January 20, 2017 .

Workshop on Rights of Immigrant Survivors of Domestic Violence

A workshop called Know Your Rights Information & Safety Planning with Immigrant Survivors, will be presented from 10am-noon Feb. 2 at the SE Health Center, basement conference room, 3653 SE 34th Ave., Portland.

The Family Violence Coordinating Council Training Committee will present the free training for people who work with survivors of domestic violence or have interest in the subject matter. 

This workshop will provide Know Your Rights information, safety planning and grounding techniques.  Participants will develop skills to assist in creating immigration safety plans and reporting civil rights violations. No registration is necessary.  

Free street parking is available; please do not park in the SE Health Center's parking lot, which is reserved for patients. 

Posted on January 20, 2017 .

Free Community Health Fair in Vancouver

Sea Mar Community Health Center is hosting a free Community Health Fair; open to all families with students enrolled in Vancouver Public Schools. The fair will be held on Tuesday (Jan. 10) from 4pm-6:30pm at Fort Vancouver High School, 5700 E 18th St. in Vancouver. Services provided include free blood pressure screenings, dental amenities, community resources and assistance with Apple Health (Medicaid) enrollment with Certified Navigators. While on site, enjoy free goodie bags and a raffle giveaway. 

Posted on January 9, 2017 .

Information on How to Prevent Birth Defects

January is Birth Defects Prevention Month, and the Oregon Family to Family Health Information Center is featuring information that can help. For example, women of child-bearing age should take a look at these 11 items that can impact pregnancy: http://bit.ly/2janRz0. For more information, visit the Oregon Family to Family Health Information Center’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/OregonF2FHIC/?hc_ref=PAGES_TIMELINE&fref=nf.

Posted on January 9, 2017 .

Polk Community Connect in Dallas

The 2017 Polk Community Connect will connect those in need, homeless, or at risk of homelessness with valuable free local resources and services. The event, which will also include a free meal, will be held Jan. 25 from 9:30am to 3:30pm at Valley Life Center, 1795 SE Miller Ave., Dallas. Free transportation to and from the event will be available; all services are free and confidential.

Among the services offered will be dental care, basic health screenings, pet care, bike repair, haircuts, clothing, backpacks and camping items. Many will be first come, first served.

Resources available will include children & youth services, education information, job assistance, housing programs, veterans services, benefits information, behavioral health and community mail service.

*first come, first served

 

To volunteer at the event: email polkconnectvolunteers@gmail.com or call (971) 599-3845.

To serve as a provider, contact Alinna Ghavami at ghavami.alinna@co.polk.or.us or (503) 623-9664 ext. 2457.

To donate to the event, contact Living Hope City Church, (503) 623-6890.

For more information, contact Heather Wright at (503) 507-4579 or go to Community Connect Flyer.

Posted on January 9, 2017 .

Clean Up Criminal Records in Oregon City

Participants must sign up by Dec. 9 for the Clackamas County Expungement Clinic. The clinic will show people how to remove one of the most common barriers to self-sufficiency—a criminal record.

To sign up, call Legal Aid at 503-224-4086 by Dec. 9. The clinic will be at 9:30 am Dec. 16 at the Clackamas Law Library, 821 Main St., Oregon City.

Posted on December 8, 2016 .

Healthy Cooking on a Budget

A free six-week course called Cooking Matters will focus on how to cook delicious and healthful meals, and how to shop on a budget. The classes begin in January, sponsored by Sea Mar Community Health Centers in Vancouver. Call health educators Elizabeth Perez, 360-213-1324, or Lauren D. Head, 360-947-2548, to register.

Posted on December 8, 2016 .

Free Class for Parents of Clackamas Teens

Staying Connected with Your Teen is the title of a free series of parenting classes facilitated by Northwest Family Services. The classes will be from 6-8pm Fridays from Jan. 27-Feb. 24 at Northwest Family Services, 6200 SE King Road, Portland.

The class, including a parent workbook, child care and dinner, will be provided at no cost to participants. To register, contact Judy Pearce, 503-655-8342, ext. 7128. Pearce is the skills group coordinator and facilitator at the Clackamas County Juvenile Department.

Posted on December 8, 2016 .

My Experiences as a Cooking Matters Volunteer with the Oregon Food Bank

By Becky A. Johnson, OHSU Dietetic Intern; Intern at Oregon State WIC Office

Combining my interest in nutrition education with a desire to help my community, in 2013 I started volunteering with the Cooking Matters program at the Oregon Food Bank.  Cooking Matters is a nationwide program that addresses hunger and food insecurity through a 6-week cooking and nutrition education course and through grocery store tours.

My first volunteer role was as “shopper” for a class at Independent Living Resources (ILR) in NW Portland. ILR provides services and training to people with disabilities to improve self-sufficiency. One of our participants was a young woman who had recently lost her sight and was trying to relearn skills to help her live on her own again. I am still amazed by her knife skills and the speed at which she was able to prep meals.

Shoppers are given around $600 in gift cards to buy groceries for the entire 6 weeks of the class. Not only are you shopping for in class meals to feed participants and volunteers each week, each participant (up to 15 in a class) receives a bag of groceries to take home to prepare the week’s featured recipe for family members. Needless to say you become rather skilled in finding the best deals on groceries in order to fall within your food budget. Participants are always eager to hear how much a meal cost, and are always impressed by the awesome meals that can be prepared for under $1.50 per serving. Being a shopper is also a great way to promote the work of Oregon Food Bank to other grocery shoppers, especially when the person in line behind you inquires why you are buying 20 eggplants.

After being the shopper for classes at Multnomah County Health Department and Oregon Child Development Coalition, I decided I was ready to try my hand as Chef Instructor. While many chef instructor volunteers are professional chefs, you definitely don’t need to be one in order to lead a class – in fact I learned most of my cooking skills from previous Cooking Matters courses! The best way I can describe the Chef Instructor role is as the class choreographer. He or she decides what’s on the menu for the week, plans the lesson, and keeps the team on track because there’s a lot to cover in a 2-hour period. The participants and other volunteers do the rest.

Cooking Matters uses a facilitated dialogue model to teach cooking and nutrition education to its participants. Each week’s lesson has a theme, such as MyPlate, whole grains, or healthy fats. In facilitated dialogue participants learn from each other and are free to ask questions. From my experience, participants have lots of nutrition-related questions. Often there’s a registered dietitian on the volunteer team who can answer tough nutrition questions based on scientific knowledge.

Interested in volunteering? It’s typically a 3-5 hour/week commitment for a 7-week period and well worth your time.

Interested in taking a course? If you’re already receiving WIC or SNAP benefits, you will likely be eligible to enroll. Some classes are also open to children and families, or are geared especially to people with diabetes.

For volunteer or enrollment questions, contact OFB’s Cooking Matters Coordinator, Eddie Arellano at earellano@oregonfoodbank.org or 503-583-8735.

Also be sure to check out Cooking Matters’ great selection of recipes. I make them at home all the time and especially recommend the vegetable lasagna, pumpkin muffins, and mango salsa.

Posted on November 30, 2016 .

Food Contributions Needed for JOIN Thanksgiving

JOIN Thanksgiving

Sunday, November 20th | 4-6pm

Rose City Park United Methodist Church

5830 NE Alameda (near 57th and Sandy)

It's time for JOIN Thanksgiving!  This is a wonderful community event that brings together hundreds of people to enjoy good food and loving community.  But we can't do it without your tasty food contributions!

Sign up to bring a classic Thanksgiving dish - gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, pies, or any favorite dish from your own family tradition!  Our greatest need is pies and hams, as well people willing to cook turkeys that have already been donated. 

 In addition to bringing a potluck contribution, we welcome you to stay and enjoy the meal with our community and/or volunteer with set-up, clean-up or other tasks.  If you can't make it to the meal, no problem.  You can arrange to drop off your dish before 3pm at the church.

 Please contact organizers Courtenay and Callie at  thanksgiving@joinpdx.org or 503-701-3027 to sign up to bring a dish!

Posted on November 17, 2016 .

World Diabetes Day

WorldDiabetesDaybanner2.jpg

In celebration of World Diabetes Day, 211info is showcasing local resources throughout Southwest Washington that invite folks to take charge of their health and wellness.

-          Washington State University – Vancouver and the YWCA Clark County offer diabetes prevention programs. Join a small group and work on your personal lifestyle goals in order to offset the risk of acquiring type 2 diabetes.

-          Sea Mar Vancouver offers a free class, “Living Well with Diabetes”, where participants learn how to manage their diabetes, and make positive lifestyle choices to live a healthier life.

-          Ready to get active? Join a free or low cost fitness class offered by Clark County Public Health, or Skamania County Community Health. Offerings include yoga, Tai Chi, Zumba, and Tae Kwon Do.

-          Looking for a free blood pressure screening? 211info offers listings of sites located through Southwest Washington where you can check your blood pressure: www.211info.org/blood-pressure-screening-locations

-          Are you or is someone you know at risk for pre-diabetes? Take the risk test to find out: www.doihaveprediabetes.org

-          Hungry for more? Clark County Food Bank partners with local community organizations to offer free nutrition education classes using healthy, low cost foods.

For more information on program eligibility, class dates and time, contact a 211info specialist:

-          Dialing 2-1-1

-          Texting your zip code to 898211

-          Emailing help@211info.org

Posted on November 14, 2016 .

Black Parent Initiative presents parenting symposium

“Sustaining the Village: Preserving Our Roots” is the theme of the Black Parent Initiative’s seventh annual parent symposium. It’s an all-ages event, with workshops geared toward parents of children ages birth through teens, and a youth track featuring STEM activities and topics facilitating youth discussions. Lunch and childcare are provided.

The symposium will begin at 9:15am Saturday, Nov. 12, at the Portland Community College SE Campus, 2305 SE 82nd Ave., Portland. Keynote speaker is Dr. Joy DeGruy, author of Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome, who will discuss how African American history affects people and behaviors, and how to enhance parenting interactions.

For details, email parent.symposium@thebpi.org.

Posted on November 8, 2016 .