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Mother’s Hubbard’s Cupboard Expands Services To Community In Larger Facility

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A local food charity has been able to significantly expand its services and programs for people since its movement into a new facility.

In June of this year, Mother’s Hubbard’s Cupboard opened its doors at 1100 West Allen Street.

The new facility plus an increase in food available for distribution and increased staff have allowed more hours of service to clients from 10 hours a week to 31 hours a week.

Mary Beth Harris is the Director of Development for Mother Hubbard’s and she says the organization has jumped from 9,000 bags of groceries a month to over 13,000 bags a month.

“We have been working closely with the Hoosier Health Foodbank, who is our main supplier of food,” Harris says, “We work with them to ensure the supply of food is keeping up with demand.”

The new facility also has teaching kitchen and classroom, which has allowed Mother Hubbard’s to expand its Nutrition Education Program.

Nutrition staff, interns, and volunteers have hosted 37 recipe sample tables, more than tripling the number of opportunities patrons have to sample healthy and affordable recipes using items available in the pantry.

They have also hosted nine nutrition workshops including canning, jamming, and fermentation classes.

Mother Hubbard’s also operates a Garden Education program.

They have planted and begun tending a demonstration garden, which has produced its first harvest of tomatoes, basil, eggplant, arugula, and cucumbers for the pantry.

We asked how her organization has managed to fund the expansion of the food distribution system and these and other programs it provides.

Harris says they launched the Nourishing Community: Growing Possibilities eight months ago with the goal of $325,000 and they are already 85 percent of that goal. They hope to use that money to renovate their new facility, buy more tools and equipment as well as help manage a three year transition period with an increase in services and operating cost.

“We expected to increase about 25 percent and we are really seeing over and above what we anticipated by moving into the larger facility,” Harris says.

Listeners who are interested in finding out about volunteer opportunities with Mother’s Hubbard’s Cupboard can go online to: www.mhcfoodpantry.org/events.

Food donations, include produce from home gardens, is accepted Monday-Friday 11am-6pm at 1100 West Allen Street in Bloomington.

Luncheon On The Impact Of Adult Vaccinations To Be Held Friday

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It’s not only children who benefit from vaccines.

The Local Council of Women invites all those who are interested in learning more about risk factors of communicable diseases and the importance of immunizations for adults to attend an event at the Monroe County in Bloomington.

Nancy Lumbley, the President of Local Council of Women says it will be a “brown-bag luncheon” and during the luncheon, there will be speakers on the importance of adult vaccines.

“Hopefully we can answer any questions people may have about whether or not they should be taking these vaccinations,” Lumbley says.

Dr. Charlene Graves, currently Chair of the Indiana Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics Immunization Committee, and Amy Meek, Program Manager at the Monroe County Public Health Clinic, will speak on the event.

Ms. Lumbley says that Dr. Graves has very thorough knowledge on the importance of immunization and Amy Meek will be able to talk about the local impact of the lack of immunization here in Monroe County.

The event will be held at the YMCA Brown Bag Luncheon on Friday, September 27, 2013, from 11:30-12:30, at the Monroe County YMCA, 2125 South Highland, in Bloomington. If you are interested in this event, please call 812-961-2171 to make a reservation.

IU Owned-And-Operated Air-Monitoring Tower Fully Funded For Next Three Years

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The Federal Department of Energy has announced that an air-monitoring station, owned and operated by Indiana University in Morgan Monroe State Forest, will be fully funded for the next three years.

The station, which sits atop a 150-foot tower in the forest since its installation in 1998, monitors the exchange of carbon dioxide between the atmosphere and the forest ecosystem, as well as water vapor levels in the air.

It’s part of the AmeriFlux system of 120 such towers in the Western Hemisphere which, in turn, is part of the world-wide FluxNet system of 1000 towers.

Kim Novick, Assistant Professor at IU’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs, says the data mined from this tower is very valuable and that’s why this tower’s operation was deemed worthy of more funding. We then asked Doctor Novick to summarize the findings from the tower’s measurement of carbon dioxide production and absorption over the period of its operation.

“As temperature has been increasing, the growing season has lengthened,” Novick says, “And since the leaves are on the trees longer, we’ve noticed that carbon absorption in the air has increased. We’ve also noticed over the past six or seven years that there’s been a tend toward dryer conditions, and this can counteract the effects of the longer growing season.”

During the first half of the monitoring period, there was a net increase in the amount of carbon taken up by plants in the forest.

However, the increasing dryness during the second half has negated the previous increase. The tower station can also monitor other green-house gases,

such as methane and nitrous oxide, but doesn’t do so, as their emission from relatively dry eco-systems like the Morgan-Monroe forest are negligible.

The  tower receives the bulk of its funding from a federal government department, Novick respons about the sequestration cuts may have affected the local monitoring station.

“Generally, it’s become increasingly more difficult for scientists to get federal funds to support their research,” Novick says, “When you’re given other options to support your project, it’s something to be happy about.”

Listeners who are interested in visiting the tower individually or as a group can contact the researchers via Steve Chapman at IU Communications.

Middle-Skill Level Job Openings Set To Increase Exponentially In Next Ten Years

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The Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition released a report yesterday that finds a growing number of unfilled ‘middle skills’ jobs, and concludes that Indiana’s Skills Gap is an adult problem that will require adult solutions.

Jessica Fraser, program manager and co-chair of the coalition, says in this report they define a middle skills job as a job  that requires training, that is more than a high school diploma, but less than a four year degree.

Mostly, it is one-year credentials or two-year associate degrees.

She also mentions that this is a update to a report they rolled out in 2010.

“In the ten-year projection from this report, we found that there were 63,000 more middle-skills job than in the projection we did three years ago,” Fraser says. “This means more opportunity in the middle-skills job market.”

According to Fraser, middle-skills jobs mean more than that for Hoosiers.

In the short term, the jobs don’t require four-year college education, which makes people get re-trained relatively quickly and able to make a family-sustaining wage if they lost their jobs.

“There are jobs that are required to take place here in Indiana,” Fraser says, “Not only that, but they are high wage jobs, and I think that’s the key takeaway for Hoosiers in the long term.”

Despite all these benefits middle skills job brings to Hoosiers job market, the report finds that the largest and fastest-growing segment of Indiana’s skills gap comes from middle-skill jobs.

Fraser says that 55 percent of the jobs in 2012 were classified as middle-skill, but only 47 percent of people in Indiana had the skills for those jobs.

“Based on a ten-year projection, 550,000 job openings will be coming up as middle-skill. We simply won’t have nearly enough workers to fill those positions,” Fraser says.

To fill the gap, the Coalition has selected four policy priorities: allow part-time students greater access to state financial aid, continue differentiation of services for students in adult basic education, maximize on-the-job training opportunities and promote the statewide establishment of prior learning assessments.

Wimbush on DEMA

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Bev Smith and Eric Love of WFHB’s Bring it On! speak with the new Vice President for IU’s Office of Diversity Equity and Multicultural Affairs James C. Wimbush about his new position and the goals he has planned for DEMA, for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

Daily Local News – September 24, 2013

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The Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition released a report yesterday that finds a growing number of unfilled ‘middle skills’ jobs; A tool for monitoring the local impact of global climate change has recently been given an assurance of funding for at least the next few years; The Local Council of Women will hold a discussion on communicable diseases and immunizations at the Monroe County Public Library; Local food charity Mother’s Hubbard’s Cupboard announced a significant expansion of services and programs for people since its movement in June to a new facility at 1100 West Allen Street.

FEATURE
Wimbush on DEMA
Bev Smith and Eric Love of WFHB’s Bring it On! speak with the new Vice President for IU’s Office of Diversity Equity and Multicultural Affairs James C Wimbush about his new position and the goals he has planned for DEMA, for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

INS AND OUTS OF MONEY
Experts recommend an emergency savings fund that reflects 3-6 months of your annual household salary. Ashley and Sarah interview local community members about whether or not they have an emergency fund, how they have set it up, and real life examples of emergency expenses, on the Ins and Outs of Money, our weekly segment providing economic education to keep your budget balanced, and connecting you to community resources that help you keep your finances flourishing.

CREDITS
Anchors: Shayne Laughter, Alycin Bektesh
Today’s headlines were written by David Murphy and Yvonne Cheng, and Yin Yuan
Today’s feature was produced by Harrison Wagner, courtesy of Bring it On!
The Ins and Outs of Money is produced by Dan Withered, in partnership with the Monroe County Public Library and the Monroe County United Way
Our engineer is Harrison Wagner
Executive Producer is Alycin Bektesh

Ins and Outs of Money – Emergency Fund

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Experts recommend an emergency savings fund that reflects 3-6 months of your annual household salary. Ashley and Sarah interview local community members about whether or not they have an emergency fund, how they have set it up, and real life examples of emergency expenses.

Report Shows Recovery Has Not Benefited Most Hoosiers

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A recently released report into income and poverty in Indiana has concluded that the continuing recovery from the great recovery has not benefitted most Hoosiers. The report, entitled ‘No Progress’, from the Indiana Institute for Working Families, there has been no significant change in the poverty rate for the state, since the recession supposedly ended last year, and average incomes have actually continued their decade long decline. The decline in wages and the increase in poverty over the last decade in Indiana has surpassed both that of the country as a whole and that of our neighboring states.

Furthermore, the state unemployment rate has been above the national average for one full year. Indiana’s high unemployment rate is at least partly attributed to the continuing barriers in the way of people attaining post-secondary educational training. Obstacles to educational attainment continues to be a barrier to high-wage growth.

The Daily Local News spoke to Derek Thomas, Senior Policy Analyst with the Institute. He first talked about poverty in Indiana.”Since 2000, Indiana saw a 58.7 percent increase, that’s the fifth largest in the U.S. In 2007, the poverty rate was 12.3 percent.”Currently, fifteen point six percent of Hoosiers live in poverty. It is much worse for younger residents, with over twenty-two percent of all state children living in poverty, and twenty-seven point two of children under five years of age in poverty.

The study next looked at income in the state. It found that Median Household Income in Indiana is over six percent below what it was when the recession began in 2008. The decline in income since the year 2000 has been the fourth largest in the country, similarly the worst among our neighbors except for Michigan.

This poverty and low income is exacerbated by the relatively low educational levels of Hoosiers. And, the percent of state adults with secondary and post-secondary degrees has not improved significantly over the last year. The institute has suggest several policy measures that could quickly alleviate some of these social-economic problems.

“First of all, we recommend the incretin the earn and income tax credit. It’s a federal credit for low to moderate working family. The credit reduces the tax burden. So, it offsets pay roll and income taxes. It’s also refundable, meaning if the credit exceeds the tax, the credit will given it back to the family.”

The second recommendation was for Indiana to enact a $25,000 tax floor, where a family of four earning less than this amount would not be charge income tax. Currently, Indiana is one of only 15 states that tax people below the federal poverty level of 23 thousand for a family of four and 11 thousand for an individual. The third recommendation is for the state to address the so-called cliff effect of work support programs, which Thomas explains for us, using the example of Indianapolis.

“In Marion County, a single-parent of two children, for example, post from 15 dollars per hour that parent losses about more than 8,000 dollars in childcare benefits. In this single parent family raises two children, childcare is important. Works program, means that you are only eligible for childcare if you are working. But what happens is that once you reach the certain address hold, the top level of eligibility lose it all.”

Consequently, employees would be hesitant to seek such an modest pay increase which creates a so-called poverty trap, impeding people’s socio-economic upward mobility. The report also recommends an increase in the minimum wage and indexing it to the cost of living index, and making it easier for Hoosiers to access higher education institutions and staying there until completion of their program.

Thomas concludes saying state policy makers should pursue these remedies.”We are optimistic that the message that self-deficiency is something that everyone embraces.”

Almost half of Hoosier children are low income, defined as below 200% of the official national poverty threshold. These poverty rates are the fifth worst in the nation and worse than all neighboring states except for Michigan, the home of bankrupt Detroit. The full report can be viewed on-line at: www.incap.org/2013povertyday.

Bring It On! – Septmber 23, 2013

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William Hosea and Cornelius Wright along with Bev Smith and Eric love, welcome James C. Wimbush, Vice President of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs at IU.

PART ONE
Back in August, IU President Michael A. McRobbie selected James C. Wimbush, dean of the University Graduate School, as the successor to Dr. Edwin Marshall as the vice president for the Office of Diversity Equity and Multicultural Affairs.

Vice President Wimbush, who will continue in his position as dean, has served as IU’s top graduate school administrator for the past seven years and has been a professor at the IU Kelley School of Business since 1991.

Recently, Bring It On requested and was granted special access with Vice President to acquaint himself with our listeners and discuss his vision for DEMA. What followed is a prerecorded interview featuring Bring It On contributors Bev Smith and Eric Love.

PART TWO
Headline news and local calendar events of interest to the African-American community.

CREDITS
Hosts: William Hosea and Cornelius Wright
Bring It On! is produced by Clarence Boone
Executive Producer Alycin Bektesh
Our News Editor is Michael Nowlin
Our Board Engineer is Chris Martin

Indiana Sierra Club on Carbon Limits for Coal Plants

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Under rules announced last week by the Environmental Protection Agency, new power plants will be limited in how much carbon they can emit into the atmosphere. The new rule is expected to most dramatically affect coal-fired plants, which will be forced to capture at least some of the carbon they release. Both supporters and detractors of the rules say they will make it more difficult to build new, financially viable coal plants. The Hoosier Chapter of the Sierra Club has often brought attention to the environmental hazards of coal power. Assistant News Director Joe Crawford spoke with Jody Perras, from the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, about the potential effects of the rules for today’s WFHB feature exclusive.

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