Blood drive draws from near and far
Fremont– Donors came from as far away as Muskegon on Friday to do their small part and help a total stranger they’ve never met, an 11-year-old girl with a special need.
Tegan Rose of Spring Lake has leukemia and requires a much-needed transfusion. The challenge: Tegan has O-negative blood, a rare blood group that only 5 percent of the world’s population is estimated to have.
To help find a match, Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial teamed up with Michigan Blood to host a special blood drive on Friday, July 14 – and the public’s response was overwhelming, exceeding even the most optimistic expectations of staff working during the blood drive.
“I think many of us were expecting 15 people to show up, which is on the high end for blood drives, so imagine our surprise when more than 30 people came to give blood,” said Julie Ward, manager of Gerber Memorial lab services who helped coordinate the blood drive. “We had lines of people waiting to donate blood, and that just goes to show how generous West Michigan is.”
Amy Rotter, Community Relations Coordinator at Michigan Blood said that even though more than one-third of people are able to donate, only 3 to 4 percent of them actually give blood. That can make it difficult for people, especially those with rare blood types, to get the lifesaving transfusions they need.
Rotter said that’s what happened in the case of Tegan, who had to wait several hours for a blood transfusion when there wasn't enough of her blood type in stock.
“It's thanks to blood donors that people like Tegan are able to keep going,” Rotter said. “And at the Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial blood drive, donors really stepped up to help Michiganders across the state. Gerber Memorial, along with the more than 60 others across the state, rely on blood donors to provide their patients with lifesaving blood products.”
Michigan Blood expected 15 donors, an average number. More than 30 people registered, and 15 of those were first-time donors. Each donation can save up to three lives, so more than 80 Michigan lives could potentially be saved as a result of the generous donations Friday.
Rotter thanked all the donors who gave blood on Friday.
One of those donors on Friday was Cheri Shears of Fremont.
Shears said: “Every time that I try to give blood my iron is too low and I am unable to. However, today was a different story. I am O-Negative and they were able to take my blood. I was prompted to come today because of Tegan’s story. It feels good knowing that I am making a difference.”
Tom Bisson drove all the way from Muskegon. Bisson said: “I saw the call for O-Negative blood and Tegan’s story online and drove up from Muskegon to make a donation. I used to give blood on a regular basis and haven’t lately so it feels good to give to someone in need.”
Free sessions to be held July 25, August 1
By Marianne Boerigter
Spread kindness and be a part of an ArtPrize entry! The 'Kindness–Newaygo County' project is providing Kindness Camp for Newaygo County youth, grades K-8, which will include lessons for youth to learn ways of being kind, show empathy, share their ideas on kindness and use their creative skills through a project that will be included in artist Jane Stroschin's ArtPrize entry this fall.
"One of the most important social skills involved in bullying prevention is empathy, understanding and responding with caring to what others think and feel. Young people are less likely to hurt and more likely to help someone if they can imagine themselves in that person’s place" stated Lori Tubbergen-Clark, NCRESA Superintendent. "When students better understand themselves, they can better understand others. As adults, we can assist our youth in the development of empathy and kindness by encouraging them through the art and experiences of 'Kindness-Newaygo County'."
Conceived and executed by Newaygo County artist Jane Stroschin, the project 'Kindness-Newaygo County' is both one women’s artistic vision and an interactive county-wide multimedia work that attempts to raise awareness about bullying, by inviting those who experience it to engage in empathy and kindness. Stroschin is partnering with Spectrum Gerber Hospital, NCCA-Artsplace, and Newaygo County Regional Educational Service Agency (NC RESA) and K-12 students throughout the NC RESA service area in Newaygo County on this collaborative project.
With the purpose of art being, among other things, to provoke emotions and invoke wonder while communicating a certain set of ideas, the 'Kindness-Newaygo County' project is a presentation intended to speak to viewer’s hearts and minds.
Stroschin’s work will be six 4'x8' acrylic painted canvases and six 5' tall free-standing displays of shoes, artfully decorated by Newaygo County students, with all pieces emphasizing the theme "Walk a Mile in My Shoes....Be Kind". The shoe displays were created by students from Newaygo County Career Tech Center. Stroschin’s paintings and the accompanying artful shoe displays will be presented at each Newaygo County elementary school in early September, then on to ArtPrize September 20 – October 8!
As part of their activities, students in Kindness Camp will embellish a variety of shoes in artful ways that Stroschin will include as part of her ArtPrize 2017 entry. With her themes of "Be Kind" and "Walk a Mile in My Shoes" in her artwork, the shoes will complement her work and add a youthful spirit to the entry.
Kindness Camp will be held in two sessions, Tuesday July 25 and Tuesday, August 1, each from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. The location will be the Newaygo County Career-Tech Center in Fremont. There is no fee to participate, but registration is required. Please call 231.924.8807 for more information and to register.
“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.”-Henry James
Rockin Newaygo County Rolls into White Cloud
By Charles Chandler
If you ever want to see magic happen give a group of kids and adults free painting supplies, a flat surface to work on, and a bunch of smooth rocks and tell them to use their imagination.
This past Saturday local kids and parents met at 11:00 AM at the Trail Side Pavilion in the White Cloud Campground and Park for a free rock painting event. It was a perfect balmy summer day and about 80 painters, parents and wait staff gathered at the Pavilion to paint rocks.
Always on the hunt for something fun, free and interesting...
Hesperia Methodist Church women, community donate bags, pillows to Gerber Memorial cancer patients
Fremont– The Hesperia United Methodist Church women’s group on Tuesday, July 11, 2017, made a donation of 55 bags that contained snacks, activities, cards and other items to cancer patients at Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial. The thirty-one brand bags also double as a thermal bag. In addition, the 15 women who helped with the bags also made 55 bone pillows to comfort and support these patients. These donated gifts are already being distributed to patients.
“We are always looking for community missions that we can help people with. We make all kinds of things” said Joan Graff, a member of the Church who helped organize the project. The gifts were sponsored by numerous groups and individuals in the area. Other than volunteering for Gerber Memorial, Joan and her team plan to dedicate their 2017 mission outreach to the homeless population of Newaygo County, which is estimated to number more than 500 people.
Tamarac, Gerber Memorial offers four free fitness classes and family fun at Baby Food Festival
Fremont–Tamarac and Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial will spotlight fun family activities and information that focus on fitness and personal wellness during the National Baby Food Festival in downtown Fremont.
“We’re thrilled to share activities and information through ‘Fitness at the Festival’ that can help families in our community have fun together and make fitness and wellness part of their daily lives,” said Amanda Irwin, wellness center manager. “Tamarac and Gerber Memorial have resources and support services for people at every stage of their lives in terms of health and wellness, and being able to bring some of those to the National Baby Food Festival is exciting. We’re grateful to the Fremont Area Chamber of Commerce and all our community partners for their hard work on the National Baby Food Festival. We encourage everyone to stop by ‘Fitness at the Festival’ and check out these fun fitness classes.”
On Wednesday, July 19, Tamarac and Gerber Memorial will be at the Kids Expo from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.Featured will be childbirth education, sweatbands and a kidspush-up competition, as well as information about community wellness and an assortment of giveaways.
Also Wednesday, Tamarac will feature Kids ZUMBA at 3:30 p.m. to 4 p.m., and Fit Family from 4:15 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.
On Thursday, July 20, Gerber Memorial will participate in the NBFF Business Expo 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. And from 6:15 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tamarac will feature POUND, a cardio-jam session inspired by the energizing fun of playing drums.
On Friday, July 21, Tamarac will showcase the fitness bootcamp from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m.
The Fitness at the Festival activities will take place at Veterans Memorial Park and all fitness levels are welcome.
The Youth Advisory Committee (YAC) of Fremont Area Community Foundation was recently awarded the 2017 Grant of the Year Award by the Council of Michigan Foundations and the Michigan Community Foundations Youth Project Committee.
The award recognized YAC for its $27,500 grant to the Newaygo County Area Promise Zone. Rob Collier, president and CEO of the Council of Michigan Foundations, presented the award during the closing session of the 25th-annual Youth Grantmakers Summer Leadership Conference on June 25.
Three YAC members and two advisors from the Community Foundation attended the weekend conference at Central Michigan University, along with other youth philanthropists from across Michigan, Illinois, and Wisconsin.
The grant supports Promise Zone scholarships and a tuition-free path to college education for local students. At the grant presentation to the Promise Zone Authority Board in January, YAC member Sydney Noordyk shared that the committee was proud to support something that would directly impact the futures of Newaygo County students.
“This is one of the most exciting grants we’ve made,” said Noordyk. “The Promise Zone will have a big impact on us for years to come.”
YAC is a student-run committee focused on meeting the needs of Newaygo County youth through grantmaking and service learning. The committee is comprised of 25 high school students representing Fremont, Grant, Hesperia, Newaygo, and White Cloud public high schools as well as the homeschooling community.
Special Gerber Memorial blood drive this Friday to help West Michigan girl
Fremont, Mich.– Summer is a time when blood donations are at their lowest. To help meet the need, Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial is hosting a special blood drive on Friday, July 14, between 7a.m. and 1 p.m. to help one special girl who needs help right away.
The Blood Bus is coming to Fremont with hopes of helping 11-year-old Tegan Rose from Spring Lake. Just days before her birthday, Tegan was diagnosed with leukemia. Prior to undergoing her much-needed blood transfusion, she learned that she has a rare blood type: O-negative. She is only able to receive O-negative blood and Tegan is left waiting for blood to be donated in order for her to undergo the transfusion. That’s why Michigan Blood is working to get enough donations to help people just like Tegan.
The bus will be parked in the circle between the hospital and the professional building that houses the Multispecialty Clinic.
In addition to donors knowing they could potentially help save a life, everyone who attempts to donate will receive a $3 coupon to the Sullivan Street Café on the first floor of Gerber Memorial. People who donate twice between July 10 and Oct. 31 will be entered for a chance to win a Yeti cooler filled with Michigan-made merchandise.
Michigan Blood is the primary provider of blood and blood products for more than 60 hospitals in Michigan, including Spectrum Health. Donations given outside of Michigan Blood do not have direct local impact. Donating blood with Michigan Blood helps save the lives of patients in Michigan hospitals. Any healthy person 17 or older (or 16 with parental consent) who weighs at least 112 pounds may be eligible to donate, although females age 18 and under must weigh 120 pounds or more.
Spots are filling up fast, so click the link below to schedule an appointment to help save a life today. Walk-ins are also welcome.
White Cloud County Park is hosting a rock painting day on Saturday, July 15 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the park pavilion. The event is free and sponsored by Rockin NC (Newaygo County), Newaygo County Parks & Recreation, City of White Cloud and Newaygo County Welcome Center.
Painted rocks are popping up all over Newaygo County bringing smiles to the finders and displaying lots of creativity from both adults and children as part of a local effort to encourage kids to be more active.
Rockin NC is the result of a family vacation to Florida where Kimberly Howland’s children had a lot of fun finding the painted rocks. “I am always looking for cheap, fun things to do,” Howland said. “We started with a goal of 100 rocks and wanted to put at least two in every city and township in Newaygo County. In just a few weeks it has grown to more than 2,000 participants on the Facebook page.”
Howland said that many families might find it difficult to buy paint and brushes and still want to participate. If you find a rock, you may keep it or rehide it but take a picture and post it to RockinNewaygoCounty so they painter knows it has been found. If you keep it, it is encouraged that you hide a different one so there are always plenty to find.
To re-hide a rock make sure it is outside, visible and not hidden under something and must be in a place that is easy to get to, safe and not where it could be considered a nuisance. Don’t hide it in the grass that has to be mowed. Rocks are provided by Mellema Nursery.
That’s when Newaygo County Parks and the city of White Cloud saw the popularity and thought of a great way to encourage people to get out and use the parks.
“This is a great opportunity for families to do things together and to get kids off the couch or way from their electronics,” Howland said.
“Wear clothes that won’t be ruined with a little paint,” said Parks Director Nicholas D. Smith. “We will have rocks and paint. Rocks can be hidden immediately in the park or other places in Newaygo County.”
For more information, contact Newaygo County Parks at 231-689-7340 or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NCParks/
With recent visits, Gerber Memorial mobile mammo delivers critical screenings to patients in underserved areas
Fremont-Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial’s recent outreach with a mobile mammogram vehicle is connecting patients in underserved areas with critical screenings for breast cancer.
On Friday, a daylong mobile mammogram event in White Cloud drew 10 women to the parking lot of Sally’s Restaurant on North Charles Street. A service of Spectrum Health Betty Ford Breast Care Services, the mobile unit was parked from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and staffed by Kelly Butler, mammography tech, and Margaret Jackson, patient registration specialist.
Two months earlier, seven women were screened when the mobile unit – a pink and white vehicle the size of a large bus – visited Croton Township on May 5.
Next stop this fall for the Grand Rapids-based unit: Holton.
The numbers in Croton Township and White Cloud are striking: The unit has the capacity to screen only around 12 patients on a full day and typically sees no more than a handful of people. The unit’s main goal is to deliver a critical service to people in traditionally hard-to-reach, underserved areas of the state with limited access and resources.
“Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial is pleased that we can bring the mobile mammogram vehicle twice to Newaygo County so far this year and that on both occasions, it has been well-received and utilized by patients in our community,” said Brian McClain, Gerber Memorial director of clinical and ambulatory services. “Screenings are critical to reducing cases of breast cancer, which can be treated when detected early enough, so that’s why getting our mobile unit to areas where women may face challenges getting to our hospital in Fremont is essential. Our effort was a true partnership with the local community, and we are grateful that many people stepped up to get the word out so their neighbors knew about the opportunity to get screened without travelling far from their homes.”
Gerber Memorial is planning to bring the mobile mammogram vehicle to Holton in October, with details being finalized.
Because the mobile unit can take a limited number of patients, women were asked to make an appointment to reserve a spot, by calling 616.774.7998, option 1. Walk-ins were accepted if space is available: In White Cloud, two walk-ins were among the 10 patients screened. Women who schedule appointments were asked to bring insurance information.
Free mammograms are being made available for uninsured or under-insured women. For women who want to see if they qualify, they are asked to call 616.486.6050.
Breast cancer will affect one in eight women during her lifetime, according to the American Cancer Society. When detected early, breast cancer can be treated and cured. The American Cancer Society recommends women 40 years and older have a mammogram once a year.
By Charles Chandler, N3 Special Correspondent for White Cloud and Beyond
About 7:30 AM last Thursday N3 found Pat and Orrie Ebenstein at City Hall doing what they have always done, serving their community to the best of their ability. Orrie was attending the monthly Parks and Recreation committee meeting and Pat was there to swear in for another term on the White Cloud Community Library board.
Orrie and Pat are beloved to all that know them and are living examples of altruistic service. They have committed a large part of their lives and resources in the services of others. Orrie is a member of Rotary, has served on various City boards and committees and with his favorites the Boy Scouts of America. Pat has served for about 60 years with the area Blood Bank, about 50 years with the United Way and about 40 years on the White Cloud Community Library Board.
This is a very important time for the Community Library because there is a millage campaign underway to raise money to build a new Library. For those that use the Community Library the reason for the campaign is obvious, the building no longer works. The Library has been in its current building, which previously had been a funeral parlor, for about 40 years. It is outdated and with every possible inch of the building being used it can no longer adequately serve the high volume of people that visit the Library every day and every minute that it is open.
After the swearing in the N3 Correspondent asked Pat and Orrie to sit with us for a few minutes and talk about the Library and tell us why it is so important that we build a new Community Library. According to Pat, “I believe a Library is an important and integral part of a community and we need more room to provide the necessary resources and services to our patrons.
“About 60 years ago a group of us started a library here in White Cloud. We were located downtown in a store front in the Moore building then moved to the Bill Brant Building and eventually outgrew that space. Then about 40 years ago we moved from the Brant Building to where we are now at 1038 E. Wilcox Ave. The day that we moved all the members of the Community that were big enough to hold a book turned out and we formed a line up Main Street and we passed all the books from person to person until we had them all moved.
“Now we have outgrown this location and our ability to serve our patrons and Community. Many of our area children come to the Library after school and use our computers and other resources to do their homework. Many don’t have computers at home or need a safe place to wait to be picked up. These kids need their own space to watch their movies and do their programs and activities.
“Many of our seniors don’t have computers either and come to the Library for those services or for users like us that want to hold and read from a paper book and not a computer. It is also a place where many can pick up a book and travel anywhere in the world, either because they don’t have the means to do so or because they are no longer physically able. A library is much more than just books it has a social connection and demonstrates pride and commitment to the community. A Library is like a good friend, one that is always there for you.”
Yep, Pat. Kind of reminds me of you and Orrie.
Some quick facts about the White Cloud Community Library.
In 2016, 70,000 items were circulated, 5,721 people used the computers, 2,000 items were borrowed from other libraries for patrons, 3,550 items were loaned to other libraries, and 389 children attended programs developed especially for them. During each visit to the Library a patron checks out four items with an average total value of about $80.00 and at no cost themselves.
The Library Millage Vote is Tuesday, August 8, 2017 and “the cost of .9 mill to the average White Cloud School District homeowner will be about $35.00 a year or less than $1.00 a week.”
Many feel that it is time to stop kicking this old can down the street. Our Community, our children, our seniors and especially people like Pat and Orrie need and deserve a great library.