Nenana Wellness Coalition
October 29, 2013
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, masticate and help implement plans for improving the wellness and quality of life in Nenana Alaska.
We had 14 participants today, including: Kat McElroy, Rebecca Troxel, Rebecca Aho, Heather Walker, Jeannie Bennett, Tim Horn, Bonnie Reed, Harriett Borst, David Poppe, Steve and Nick Duplantis, Clarence Gallworth and Amie Verhagen. We enjoyed tomato bisque soup, mixed green salad, sliced cheese and raisins and walnuts for lunch.
WELCOME by this week’s chairperson, Tim Horn, followed by the READING OF MISSION STATEMENT.
PRAYER was led by Rebecca Troxel followed by the PLEDGE OF ALLEGIENCE.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Minutes were submitted electronically to the WIN e-list as generated last week.
APPROVAL OF THE AGENDA: There were four additions to the agenda today.
INTRODUCTION OF GUESTS: Rebecca Aho and Heather Walker are with a Youth Empowerment project, visiting today. Clarence Gallworth is with the This generation ministry doing suicide prevention work in the Yukon Flats area, currently at Nenana Assembly of God church.
Just Move It, Nenana: There were 19 participants last night for the line-dancing activity at the Civic Center. Rebecca Ulery led, teaching the steps, and then they put it all together to music. They learned five different dances. By donation, they raised 45 dollars for the students to tour colleges next spring. It was suggested that they do a demonstration of this at the next Village Pride/Community Safety meeting to encourage others to attend. Maybe we should do a flash mob presentation? We will consult with Rebecca Ulery about future line-dance activities.
Nenana Emergency Services: Joe Forness presented his five year plan for supporting our local Emergency Services. His vision is ambitious. Year One would see new bunker gear; this equipment needs to be replaced every ten years, at a cost of a little over 3 thousand dollars per. He is in the process of updating the new electronic reporting system. He wants to update to enhanced 911 capability and to replace the repeaters from up on the hill. Lastly, this year, he would like to get a rescue boat and get EMT-I’s trained up to become EMT-II’s.
Year Two, he envisions obtaining a vehicle to carry their rescue equipment, a 2 thousand gallon water tender, fire-fighter I training for all qualified staff, and creation of a new station design. Our current fire station is maxed out for space and has problems due to age and infrastructure. The new structure would have expanded space for equipment and training needs. He would like to be able to fund for two paid staff.
Year Three he would like to see the city to provide dedicated support for the new building plan, as this will be essential to obtaining funding. If we are to build a new fire hall, we will need to garner support from every aspect of our community and from multiple entities. He would like to find funding for two part-time positions and to have a Training Coordinator.
During Year Four, Joe would like to be able to move his staff and equipment into their new building. He would also like to see a dedicated medic staff person to be sent Outside for para-medic training. He would like to get a 1st Response vehicle with Advance Life Support capability.
By Year Five, Joe would like for Nenana to have become a regional EMS training site. By doing active outreach to the rural villages, Joe believes that Nenana could assist them in expanding and increasing their emergency response. He would like to bring people in from around the Interior to work responses with our crew while they train, so they can return to their villages with real-time experience as well as training.
There would be huge expense involved in some of these projects. Joe discussed the demands placed on small rural, usually volunteer, emergency response teams, which are subjected to all manner of unfunded mandates from the federal and state levels. Potential funding to help with these costs is available but fragmented: FEMA, Homeland Security, and USDA are a few of the agencies that have money available.
Per previous discussion, a work group has been formed to begin to explore avenues of funding and to hammer out funding requests. Joe has received a response from Senator Murkowski’s office with an offer of assistance in seeking funding for our emergency services response needs.
It was remarked that Joe has good command presence and provides the ability to organize a quick and adept response in real-time emergency situations. It was also noted that six of our current EMS squad are high school students. Jeannie wants to have a food booth at the Christmas Bazaar to raise funds for the EMS.
Community Thanksgiving: It is uncertain yet where the Thanksgiving community dinner will be held. It will occur Friday following traditional Thanksgiving, and will be either at the tribal hall or the Civic Center, depending on repairs to the tribal hall. An alternative location could be the Old George Hall. Rebecca shall be making direct invitations and direct requests regarding what to bring.
Nenana Blood Drive: The Blood Bank of Alaska/Fairbanks will not schedule a blood drive here in January due to temperature/weather considerations and they had no available times in February, so our choices in March are Wednesdays, the 12th, 19th or 26th. Our consensus was that the 26th would work best for us. Tim has asked the school what would work best for them. Our June drive will be held at the Civic Center, June 25th and again next October, back in the school, on 10-08-14.
Nenana Health Fair: Begging letters are being generated. One was sent to Crowley. A request for funding will also be made to the Ice Classic. Jeannie has agreed to be our site coordinator and has a check from Railbelt to pay the site fee. She has booked the Civic Center for March 22.
Envisioning Wellness. Kathleen Demientieff has rescheduled to November 12th to present about her book. Kat will facilitate PINK’s presentation about the Bully Project on November 19th. Tim asked Mel if her would talk to us about his geo-thermal home heating system; he demurred but Karen provided contact information for the man in Fairbanks who completed their project and Tim has left him a message asking if he would be interested in doing a presentation about the process to WIN.
Rebecca: Her 98 year old Grandmother had an abscessed tooth and needed surgery. She has opted to move into a nursing care home.
Rebecca has two young children in Head Start and hence has become a volunteer in the parent advisory committee; says we will probably be hearing a lot about that.
Kat: Went to the Talking Circle yesterday. It was good but only five participants. They discussed changing it to an evening activity. So, next talking circle is scheduled for Tuesday, November 12, 5:30 P.M.
Railbelt is in the middle of our annual financial audit.
David: Has hauled 34 loads of manure from the yard to the airstrip where he has been haying. Thinks he has another six loads to go. Will be sending one of the pigs to slaughter in Delta tomorrow.
Rebecca Aho: It is wonderful to see a group of people working together for the benefit of the whole community. She explained a little bit to us about the Youth Empowerment/Youth Junior Service projects they are working on. They will be in town until Wednesday. Kat suggested she introduce herself to Cynthia Erickson who is doing suicide prevention projects with youth in Tanana
Heather. She has been working in North Pole, volunteered for a year of service. She interested in starting Youth Empowerment youth service in our community.
Bonnie: Larry and Judy Junge have left for Florida for the winter. She will be having a themed devotional on Unity in Diversity at her house Wednesday evening, 7 P.M.
Clarence: He has been developing multi-media projects for youth. The latest was a series of three to five minute video segments of a man from Talkeetna, an 80 year old a farmer named Roger who has stories that correlate farm skills with life lessons.
Jeannie: Dealing with propane leaks in the RV. She thinks it is the RV heater, so she shut off the tanks till Rob gets back. She had a lot of fun line-dancing last night.
Amie: Is experiencing morning sickness. Kristy had a baby girl Saturday night, Charlotte Anne Dugan. Paul and Elijah have gone to NYC to pick Joe up from his ministry.
The Harvest festival will be held in the old court house October 31st, 3-6 P.M.
Nick: Agrees that line dancing was a lot of fun last night. They are talking about doing a Friday night youth group at Assembly of God church, not so much scripture based as hanging out, playing video games, fellowship.
Steve: Is waiting for the lake across from the church to freeze so they can turn it into an ice skating rink. They continue coordinating meals for the O’Brien family, at least one adult and six kids. Matt and Lily are back down in Anchorage where Matt is receiving aggressive chemo-therapy. The kids say they have had enough pizza.
Harriett: Seven seniors went to Anchorage last week and it was a good trip Larry drove down and Mary drove back.
Tim: Hallowe’en Carnival at the school gym from 6-7:30. The Nenana Book Club are reading Orphan Train and will meet Moday, November 2nd, 7 PM at the Harvey’s residence to discuss this book.
Don’t forget to Fall Back one hour Sunday night.
ADJOURNMENT: Meeting was adjourned at 2:10 PM