National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week
Lead is spooky!
Lead is commonly found in homes built before 1978. Look out for lead in some of these areas: Old paint and varnish on doors & windows, Lead in paint on walls, Dust & paint chips on window wells and sills, Old painted furniture & toys, Old paint on porches, railings, & steps, Chips & dust from outside paint including siding.
If you live in Erie County and think there is a chance that you have lead in your home, contact the Erie Redevelopment Authority at 814-870-1540.
Visit the following websites for more information about Lead Hazards:
Learn more at www.redeveloperie.org or by calling the Erie Redevelopment Authority at 814-870-1540.
New Publication to assist families with Juvenile Justice system
The PA Juvenile Justice System strives to involve families in all aspects of the juvenile justice process. The next publication, "A Family Guide to Pennsylvania's Juvenile Justice System," was developed by the Family Involvement Committee of the PA Council of Chief Juvenile Probation Officers.
The guide is intended to assist families with a better understanding of the Juvenile Justice System and to enable them to be better prepared to work closely with juvenile justice staff during the justice process.
Child here to download the publication (PDF).
Need Help? Call the Mental Health Association's Behavioral Health Navigators
If you need assistance to access and/or navigate the behavioral health service and support system for yourself, your child, a family member, or someone you know, you can now contact the Behavioral Health Navigators at the Mental Health Association of PA.
The Navigator positions are designed to help people of any age – children through older adults – find resources for the variety of issues and needs that come up when looking for or using mental health and/or substance abuse services and supports. When you contact the Navigators, you can choose to remain anonymous or share your name.
You can contact the Navigators at 717-346-0549 or 1-866-578-3659, extension 2, or you can reach the Navigators via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also call the Pennsylvania Mental Health Consumers' Association at 717-564-4930 or 1-800-887-6422 to be connected to a Navigator.
New Government Resource - www.stopbullying.gov
Stopbullying.gov provides information from various government agencies on what bullying is, what cyberbullying is, who is at risk, and how you can prevent and respond to bullying. Check it out at www.stopbullying.gov.
Important Information About Medical Assistance Benefits
The Department of Public Welfare is making a change to Medical Assistance prescription drug benefits. The change starts January 3, 2012.
What is the change?
You can get up to 6 prescriptions each month. This is a new limit.
Does this change apply to you?
If you are in a managed care plan, contact your managed care plan to ask how this change applies to you.
The change does not apply if:
- You are under 21 years of age;
- You are pregnant; or
- You live in a nursing home or an intermediate care facility.
If you use the PA ACCESS card to get your prescriptions and you do not fit an exception, this change applies to you.
To read the entire notice, please click here.
"Everyong is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live his whole life believing that it is stupid."
- Albert Einstein
Submitted by Brian M., Sprout Contributor
Carbon Monoxide Detectors and Smoke Alarms Available to protect residents in Erie
Carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms are available through the City of Erie Fire Department and Safe Kids Erie partnership known as “Protect the Place You Call Home”. For more information call 870-1402.
Medical Assistance Co-Pays
As part of the PA state budget for 2011-12, the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) will begin charging co-pays for Medical Assistance services for children with disabilities whose family income is more than 200% of the federal poverty guidelines (or about $45,000 for a family of four). At this point, DPW is still deciding how to implement these co-pays.
Several organizations are concerned about the impact this will have on families. In order to give the DPW some information about out-of-pocket costs families are facing, these organizations have created a short survey asking families to complete.
Please distribute to other friends or families you know who have children with disabilities. Please fill out a separate survey for each child on Medical Assistance due to a disability.
Check out LearntobeHealthy.org!
LearntobeHealthy.org is an online health education center that has been designed to communicate physical and mental health science education concepts to students K-12 through health educational resources such as games, activities, and health education lesson plans. To learn more, visit www.learntobehealthy.org.
Stairways Behavioral Health Opens New Family Therapy Clinic on Erie’s East Side
ERIE, PA – In response to community demand for emotional support to families and neighborhoods dealing with trauma – and to best serve all families throughout Erie County – Stairways Behavioral Health announces the opening of a new clinic, on Erie’s east side, dedicated to the practice of family therapy.
“The Family Therapy and Training Institute is the product of Stairways’ vision of services delivered to families, and a rich history of best practices in the Erie community,” says Jeff Natalie, director of program development and supporting director of Stairways’ child and family services.
Sharing a campus with Stairways’ Center City Arts center on the grounds of the historic Rose Koehler Curtze estate at 138 E. 26th Street, the new ‘Family Therapy and Training Institute’ serves as an important social service anchor in the Central City Neighborhood of the U.S. DOJ’s ‘Weed and Seed’ community-based strategy.
The decision to open a clinic in this location, and one that is dedicated to families and relationships, is intentional, says Natalie. “As children grow through adolescence and into young adulthood, they will invariably experience more stress, particularly when they perceive a situation as dangerous, difficult or painful, and they feel they do not have the resources to cope. Through the Family Therapy and Training Institute, Stairways provides a centrally-located retreat for children, adolescents and their families.”
Additional strategy has gone into the type of services offered. Recognizing that children and youth get better in the context of their families and with the support of other important relationships, Stairways dedicates this new practice to the very best of prevailing family therapy models - those which address the needs of each family member in context of the full family dynamic.
“If your child breaks their leg, you don’t drive him or her to the doctor or emergency room and drop them off, then come back and pick them up once the cast is in place,” says Natalie. “Similarly, a child who is experiencing anxiety or depression or effects of a trauma, heal best when treated with family by their side. For too long we’ve been dropping our kids off at therapy, in hopes that they’ll get better. And they don’t.”
Stairways’ existing continuum of child and youth services, including the Stairways Mobile Adolescent Rehabilitation Team, Child and Adolescent Blended Case Management and Youth in Transition, is now complemented by this community outpatient mental health program. And while Erie County residents with private insurance have come to expect this full continuum of services and high standard of care from their privately paneled doctors, therapists, and rehabilitation professionals, The Family Therapy and Training Institute is open exclusively to families receiving medical assistance.
The Family Therapy and Training Institute is now accepting counseling cases for children, adolescents, couples and families. Families may obtain more information or schedule an intake appointment by calling the FTTI directly, at 814-878-2094, or toll free at 888-453-5806.
For more information, please visit www.stairwaysbh.org.
Erie County Drug and Alcohol Coalition Announces new Website to Aid in Fighting Drug and Alcohol Abuse
The Erie County Drug and Alcohol Coalition (ECDAC) announces the launch of a new website that will aid Erie professionals to fight drug and alcohol abuse. The website, www.eriedrugandalcohol.org, was made possible, in part, with a grant from the Erie Community Foundation.
The Erie County Drug and Alcohol Coalition, established in 1993, is an all-volunteer 501(C)3 organization. The board of directors and general membership represent human service agencies, health professionals, law enforcement, parents, business and community leaders, elected officials and others concerned with the development of an integrated drug and alcohol education and prevention delivery system. ECDAD is the oldest coalition of its kind in Pennsylvania.
For more information, visit www.eriedrugandalcohol.org.
Bullying Hotline set up by Safe Harbor Behavioral Health
Students in grades K-12 who are being bullied can now get immediate help. A 24-hour hotline SAFELine has been set up by Safe Harbor Behavioral Health. They are currently working with school superintendents and other community leaders to schedule meetings to learn about the hotline.
The number to call is 814-456-SAFE (7233).
Erie Community Foundations Posts Healthcare Resources for Low Income Residents of Erie County
In the search for new information to add to the Erie SPROUT Community Resource Guide, we stumbled across a very helpful guide published by The Erie Community Foundation, The Pennsylvania Area Health Education Center, The Erie County Department of Health, Erie Times News and GoErie.com.
While we take the time to load this great compilation of resources into our own guide, we wanted to make the information available to SPROUT viewers so they could take advantage immediately. Please look for the addition of this great resource into the Erie SPROUT Community Resource Guide Soon!
Guide to Healthcare Resources for Low Income Residents of Erie County
WebTool Locates Needed Resources
PEPNet has launched a new “Research Search” tool for www.pepnet.org which will improve access to the rapidly growing variety of PEPNet resources which address issues related to providing quality services to students who are deaf or hard of hearing.
The revamped search feature makes it easier to find resources, and provides immediate and accessible references for site visitors, while expanding the site’s search capabilities.
The new feature will search everything in the PEPNet Dissemination Center (PDC) where we house a variety of products, such as handbooks, articles, conference proceedings/tipsheets/curricula/training materials/CDs/DVDs, videoclips, etc. In addition to searching the PDC, you also will be able to search the following offerings:
- Frequently Asked Questions
- PEPNet Listserv Past Posts
- Current and Past PEPNet Perspectives
- Training Materials
For more information, please visit www.pepnet.org.
Use Your Head and Prevent Flat Head Syndrome for your Baby
Flat Head Syndrome is a flat spot on the back or one side of your baby’s head. Being in the same position repeatedly causes this condition.
The first six weeks of your baby’s life is a vital period for you to prevent serious disorders in the future– like facial asymmetry and movement disorders.
Here are just a few tips:
- Alternate your baby’s head direction when placing your baby to sleep on his or her back
- Carry your child in your arms frequently
- Use car seats only for riding in the car
- Avoid extended time in swings and other reclined seats
- Provide frequent, supervised tummy time when your baby is awake
Visit www.flatheadprevention.org to learn more.
This information provided by the Junior League of Erie, Women building better communities
Preparing for Post-Secondary Education at Disability.gov
This guide has tools for parents to prepare them for their child's transition from public school to postsecondary education and adulthood. Includes information about laws that protect parents' rights as well as the rights of adult children in college.
For more information, check out www.disability.gov.
PASchoolTalk is a new site that provides a forum for people who have concerns and ideas about public education in Pennsylvania. Some ELL Task Force members have already joined the site. We’d really like to see more ideas and information on ELL issues on the site – but that will only happen if more join.
Text4baby is a free mobile information service designed to promote safe pregnancy and healthy birth outcomes, particularly among underserved populations.
An educational program of the National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition (HMHB), text4baby will help women in having safe and healthy pregnancies by providing them with information they need to give their babies the best possible start in life.
Text4baby is the largest national mobile health initiative to date and is being launched by an unprecedented group of public and private partners, including the White House and the Department of Health and Huma Services (HHS).
To sign up, text BABY or BEBE to 511411, or visit www.text4baby.org
New Resource Available for Parents and Educators
Learntobehealthy.org is an online health science learning site designed to help educators, parents and community leaders communicate important health concepts to students. The site contains comprehensive lesson plans, interactive games and activities, webquests and more. The goal of the site is to inspire students and their families to make health choices that will last a lifetime.
To learn more, visit www.learntobehealthy.org
Special Education Eligibility Guidelines
Parents if your child is eligible for special education did you know:
Only you can excuse professional members of the school team from your IEP meeting. Fore example if your child has Speech, Occupational or Physical therapy only you can excuse their presence.
There should always be a special education teacher present and at least one of your child’s regular education teachers.
There should always be a local education agent at your meetings. (LEA rep) This is a person authorized to approve an aide or any monies necessary to meet your child’s needs.
You can bring whoever you want to an IEP meeting.
IEP meetings should be held at your convenience and with enough time allotted to discuss and make changes to the draft document
You can ask for additional goals to be added to any IEP.
Goals must be clearly understood and be measurable. (A good rule of thumb, close your eyes and imagine your child doing this goal, if you can then it is probably a good goal for your child)
Education should take place in the least restrictive environment
Curriculum should be modified to meet your child’s needs.
You can always request an assistive technology evaluation. There are technologies available that support children who have a difficult time with Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Math to name a few.
The Notice of Recommended Educational Placement (NOREP) does not need to be signed at the IEP meeting. This is the legal document that you sign agreeing with the child’s program, and placement. It is always best to take home and read over the IEP changes and then decide whether or not you agree. You have 10 days to do this or the IEP will go into effect whether you agree or not.
There are experts available from the IU 5 and PATTAN if your IEP team gets stuck on how to best support your child.
This information has been brought to you by Kathy L.
for more information contact Jill Hrinda-Patten Director of Mission Empower at 814-825-0788