The holiday season is a time of joy, celebration, and connection. However, amidst the festive spirit, it's crucial to ensure our homes remain safe and welcoming for everyone. Drawing inspiration from Informed Families' "Safe Homes Smart Parties" campaign, this blog aims to provide you with practical tips to make your home a safer place during the holiday celebrations.
Informed Families Catalyst
Adapting to Change…who likes it? The Answer…no one!
Adapting to the shelter-in-place order forced on us during the COVID-19 crisis is showing some early adapters: the winners are colleges and schools making the switch from sitting in a classroom to having the classroom on your laptop. Hats off to you!
One of my college-age granddaughters sent me a text yesterday, but when I called her back (generational thing) she replied back via text: I’m in class can’t talk right now.
Many schools are requiring the students to show up for their online classes in their school uniforms or in the school’s dress code. Schools are getting on with business, the content is the same, but the delivery is different.
Informed Families was scheduled to be closed for Spring Break this past week, but we canceled it. Why? So we could get our Lock Your Meds curriculum online and ready to use when Miami-Dade County public schools reopened on March 30. Schools, teachers, parents and students rely on Informed Families to provide them the latest information, tips, and resources to keep kids safe, healthy & drug free.
“I learned how to handle peer pressure and say no to drugs.”
“I didn’t know people could die from alcohol poisoning.”
“I didn’t know how much of a problem prescription drug abuse was.”
“Many of our peers are dealing with drug issues themselves or have a family member with a problem.”
Student ambassadors in the Miami-Dade County Public Schools Creating Community Change: Youth Engagement Program (CCC:YEP) program shared these messages and much more during their end of the year presentations at the Betty T. Ferguson Center in Miami Gardens on May 22, 23 and 24.
Topics: red ribbon week, ambassadors, prescription drug abuse, lock your meds, safe homes smart parties, middle school, peer pressure, drug free, drug prevention, parent peer group, miami gardens, miami
Informed Families President & CEO Peggy Sapp was invited to participate in a round table discussion about the opioid epidemic on Saturday, April 20. Organized by Congresswoman Donna Shalala, the panel was moderated by Rodrigo Lozano, LCSW, from the National Association of Social Workers and included John W. Newcomer, M.D., president and CEO of South Florida Behavioral Health Network in Miami, FL, Judge Victoria Sigler and Howard Rosen, Esq., head of narcotics in the State Attorney’s Office.
How We Pass Down Values To The Next Generation
From the moment our children are born, everything we do, every choice we make and every action we may or may not take communicates our values. Our kids are absorbing our every move, soaking up our interactions with them and with others.
We want them to learn right from wrong, how to be kind to others, how to recognize and manage their emotions and how to be honest, responsible and fair. Not only are our children more pleasant to be around when they learn these things, but they are more likely to be happy, perform well in school and become a productive members of society.
The loss of our great supporter, friend and philanthropist Betty Chapman this past week is a great reminder that we have the ability to not only pass values down to our children and their children, but we can pass down values in a community. Betty’s dedication to her community will continue to influence others to give back to their communities for decades to come.
5 Steps To Creating A Happy & Healthy Family In 2019
Have you seen Informed Families’ Lock Your Meds signs at your local Publix Pharmacy store? Through our amazing partnership with Publix Pharmacy, we are reaching roughly 1.2 million people in 720 stores across Florida and 397 in the Southeastern US with the Lock Your Meds message. Wow!
A happy and healthy family starts when you create a safe and healthy environment for children. This includes securing your medication, taking regular inventory to ensure nothing is missing and safely disposing of unused or expired medication.
Also, keep tabs on your liquor cabinet - and resist unhealthy social norms that make you feel bad for not “teaching your child to drink” at home. The research shows that children who start drinking before age 15 are 5 times more likely to have alcohol problems at adults.
Drug overdose was responsible for the loss of nearly 72,000 Americans in 2017, according to the Center for Disease Control & Prevention. That’s just under 200 people each day for the entire year - and 8,000 more deaths than the previous year, also a record year. At least 2/3 of those deaths were due to opioid abuse. Here are two trends that are contributing to this awful epidemic.
From Pills To Heroin
Patients receiving prescription drugs for pain as a result of an injury or recovering from surgery are often given significantly more than they need. While opioids are effective in managing pain, their addictive properties make them dangerous for long-term use.
How Large Is The Opioid Problem In Florida?
With the opioid epidemic sweeping the nation, Florida is certainly not immune. And apparently, the problem is getting worse. According to a recent report from Florida's medical examiners, there has been a dramatic 22% increase (2,126 more deaths) of in drug-related deaths from the prior year. The report also showed a 35% increase in opioid-related deaths (1,483 over the previous year for a total of 5,725).
Not suprisingly, more deaths were caused by prescription drugs than illicit drugs, accounting for 61% of all drug occurrences in the report. After all, availability and a low perception of harm lead to increased use and abuse.
The drugs that caused the most deaths were cocaine, benzodiazepines, fentanyl, morphine, heroin, alcohol, oxycodone, methadone and methamphetamine.
“Clearly, those are shocking numbers and we have got to do something about it,” said Senate Health Policy Chairwoman Dana Young, R-Tampa to The News Service of Florida.
Here are additional highlights from the report:
Normal Day, Let Me Be Aware Of The Treasure You Are
If nothing else, Hurricane Irma helps us to greatly appreciate uneventful times and the normalcy of our regular routines.
We take normal routines for granted; we don’t think about electricity, cable, phones, etc. until they are not functioning. Then, we get anxious and angry…someone let us down! Who? FPL, the cable company, the city, surely there is someone to blame for inconveniencing my routine. Unfortunately, Mother Nature doesn’t care about inconvenience to my little routine.
Hurricanes get our attention and force us to reexamine our place in the universe. I love the line, “Do you want to make God laugh? Tell him your plans.” We witness resilience from people whose house and cars are destroyed. Most say the same thing, “we still have our lives.”
Normal Day, Let Me Be Aware Of The Treasure You Are for someday I will want to hold you and you will be gone. As our routines return to normal, let’s treasure each routine and normal day.