Nenana Wellness Coalition
September 3, 2013
There were 12 in attendance today, including: Kat McElroy, David Poppe, Beverly Joseph, Tim Horn, Virginia Young, Bonnie Reed, Evelyn, Johnny and Ephraim Verhagen, Amy Verhagen & Paul & Merrily Verhagen.
We enjoyed chicken and black mushroom soup with wild rice, fresh tomato and cucumber salad, walnuts with raisins, sliced cheese and Ritz crackers for lunch.
The Nenana Wellness Coalition is an alliance of representatives from various organizations, government agencies, community groups and individuals that meets weekly to discuss, evaluate, coordinate, consolidate, celebrate and help implement plans for improving the wellness and quality of life in Nenana Alaska.
WELCOME followed by the READING OF MISSION STATEMENT, by this week’s chair-person: Tim Horn.
PRAYER was led by Merrily Verhagen, followed by the PLEDGE OF ALLEGIENCE.
PRESENTATION OF AGENDA AND CALL FOR MODIFICATIONS: There were no additions to the agenda.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Posted on the WIN link at http://www.railbelt.org and submitted electronically to the WIN e-list.
INTRODUCTION OF GUESTS: No new guests today.
Who’s Your Grand-daddy?: Paul Verhagen began his remarks by stating that he and his wife have been interested in and researching genealogy and family history for 35 years, beginning when they were first married in 1978. Back then, he noted, they had no internet, and research was conducted by making phone calls and writing letters and researching in person, government offices, church registries, etc. This was a slow, laborious, cumbersome process, but they were able to gather not only the facts of who their ancestors were, but also photographs and most importantly, the stories of family from long ago. He said that although his mother didn’t understand his fascination with genealogy, she was willing to go with them on visits to various cemeteries to collect information and she willingly shared what she already knew about the family tree. This information had to be hand-lettered or typed into pedigree charts.
Today, with the technological advances of cell phones, email and the internet, with literally thousands of web sites devoted to family histories and research, the process of finding out about your family is infinitely simpler. He said that genealogy is the second most researched subject on the internet. Although he knows his family roots are from Holland, because he and his family participated in a DNA testing project, fully ten years after providing DNA samples in a double blind study, he was informed that the highest concentration of his genotype is from the North Western portion of Ireland, followed by the Basque mountain area between Spain and Portugal, then areas around the North Sea and the Black Sea and ultimately back to Southern China, which he found to be fascinating information. He has found that if you go back five generations in the USA, for people of European ancestry, you will find a common link, and likely multiple common links. Paul provided some hand-outs detailing the math.
Paul talked about some of the web sites they have used for conducting their research. Subscription rates for various sites can range anywhere from free to several hundred dollars per year. He explained that lots of information is held private: birth certificates information does not become public until 105 years after a person birth; census information is held privately for 50 years. Web-based data bases allow a person access to information that others have ferreted out. Military records and pension records are a wealth of information, for instance. When you begin to build a genealogical data base on a web site, you can set it to be private or public, restricting access for instance to only those other people to whom you have given permission.
Merrily and Evelyn demonstrated how to access various web sites. They noted strategies for narrowing a name search by inputting gender, maiden names, and dates, for example. One they use extensively is http://www.ancestry.com which seems to best fit their needs. They have also used their church genealogy web site at http://www.newfamilysearch.org w2hich may also be reached via the main LDS web site at http://www.lds.org and just follow the links. Paul also mentioned http://www.usgenweb.org as being a good site. For international searches, he recommended http://www.myheritage.com . They are all slightly different; each has features that are helpful, each has drawbacks. . The Verhagens are willing to allow others to utilize their subscription to access research, if people are interested in giving the process a try; people interested may contact Paul via his cell 378-5454.
WELLNESS THOUGHT: Today, September 10th, is World Suicide Prevention Day. A good time to ponder the consequences of what we as a society have long neglected to address — the close link between suicide and addiction disorders. We can’t blame our neglect on ignorance. Multiple federal studies have revealed the startling statistics over the last five years. We know that addiction is the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S. — 600,000 out of the 2.5 million deaths in the U.S. annually are attributable to tobacco, alcohol, or other drugs. The failure to integrate addiction prevention, treatment, and recovery effectively into our nation’s healthcare structure costs upwards of $468 billion annually, harming families and communities across the country. Alcohol and drug abuse are second only to depression and other mood disorders as the most frequent risk factors for suicidal behavior. Linda Rosenberg, National Council for Behavioral Health
Beverly: Glad to be here. Thanks for lunch.
Kat: Dancing in The Streets starting Friday the 13th with the parade at five, then dinner and dancing at the Civic Center.
Virginia: Her root stock is still in transit. She is enjoying this wonderful fall weather.
Bonnie: The Seniors will be making their train trip to Denali tomorrow, leaving Nenana from the depot at 9 AM. $25.00 round trip!
Evelyn: People who want a firewood permit can get one at DNR/Forestry in Fairbanks, on Airport at University (across from Fred Meyers); permits costs ten dollars and people can get up to ten cords. Forestry will supply maps and provide information what and where to cut.
Merrily: Joe is just coming back from mission and Mary is getting ready to leave. She will be serving in Columbus, Ohio; she is very excited.
Amy: Her birthday was on Sunday. She is learning to speak Koyokon Athabascan.
Paul: Was talking yesterday to the deputy commissioner of DNR about map-making. The legislature granted money to update Alaska maps and the deputy commissioner was looking for input that would be valuable; Paul told him about the need to map rural/remote Alaska and he said that he would take that suggestion to the Lieutenant Governor when he spoke next to him.
Tim: There will be a basketball clinic Friday and Saturday 3:30-6:30 PM.
The next soccer game will be a home game at Anderson Tuesday the 17th, 5:30 PM.
Games are also scheduled there for the 20th and 21st.
The Assembly of God church will be hosting fifth Sunday sing-alongs, the first is scheduled for the 29th at 6 PM.
ADJOURNMENT: 2:00 PM