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Local Youth Hero Recognized

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Local business, Gi & Associates and tps, Creative Expressions, Inc (a local non-profit) partnered in celebration of Black History Month to recognize several local citizens for their outstanding accomplishments and community service. One of the outstanding young people recognized was DaShan Donique White Jr.

In 2010, DaShan Donique White Jr. was stabbed protecting a woman and child from being attacked in a Victorville shopping parking lot. “Our organization has established an award to recognize the outstanding contributions of community service made by our young people. Through a financial gift pledged by Gi & Associates we are now able to annually give this award of $200 to a deserving young person. It was by the Board’s unanimous vote that DaShan would be this year’s recipient,” stated Theresa Polley-Shellcroft, founder and President of tps, Creative Expression, Inc.

“We are compelled to support an award that recognizes the service and positive acts performed by our young people. Equally it’s our honor to partner with a Foundation that enriches our community through the cultural arts and education,” says Regina Weatherspoon-Bell, President of Gi & Associates.

During the recent Victor Valley African American Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon, Dashan and his mother, Franshella Hopkins was introduced to the many Chamber members, business and community leaders in attendance. DaShan received his award along with several certificates and a special recognition was presented by Victorville Mayor Ryan McEachron. Mayor McEachron was the luncheon’s featured guest speaker.

Lionel Dew, President of the Victor Valley African American Chamber of Commerce addressed the crowd stating, “We are honored to recognize DaShan White Jr. for his unselfish act to save someone else’s life. Without regard for his own life and without thinking twice he felt compelled to take it upon himself to be extraordinary in action. We extend our sincere gratitude.”

Riverside Public Utilities’ Specialized Rate Programs Receive Honors from CALED

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Sacramento – Riverside Public Utilities (RPU) specialized economic development and business retention electric rates were honored with Awards of Merit last week in the California Association for Local Economic Development’s (CALED) 2012 Awards of Excellence Program.

RPU’s Award of Merit in the Economic Development Programs category of the statewide competition recognizes outstanding and innovative programs that help manage resources while helping to carry out economic development policy in a progressive, timely, and cost effective manner. Launched in 2010, RPU’s Economic Development (ED) and Business Retention (BR) rates programs have become important tools that have allowed businesses to relocate and thrive in Riverside.

The ED rate drastically reduces initial operating costs for new businesses moving to Riverside by offering a 40 percent discount in energy rates in the first year of operation, and a 20 percent discount in year two. The savings generated can greatly offset moving expenses and start up expenditures. Meanwhile, the utility’s BR rate targets existing commercial customers, specifically those considering relocation or closure, and offers them a temporary discount on electric services of 15 to 25 percent.

To date, these rate programs have attracted or retained a total of eight companies, resulting in the creation of 870 jobs and the retention of 663 more. RPU is currently working with 15 additional commercial customers, including plastics manufacturers, printers, and food processing and cosmetics firms that are looking to relocate to Riverside or receive assistance with energy costs during tough economic times.

Consisting of both private and public organizations, CALED is the premier statewide professional economic development organization dedicated to advancing its members ability to achieve excellence in delivering economic development services to their communities and business

Colon Cancer Can Be Prevented With Regular Screening

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American Cancer Society Encourages African Americans 50 and Older to Get Tested for Colon Cancer. Learn Your Family’s Medical History.

Los Angeles –The American Cancer Society encourages African American men and women 50 and older to make testing for colorectal cancer a priority. Colorectal cancer (commonly referred to as colon cancer) is the third most common cancer among African American men and women. Colon cancer can be prevented through screening, which allows doctors to find and remove polyps in the colon before they turn cancerous. African Americans should begin testing for colon cancer at age 50, but those with a family history are at higher risk and should start testing sooner.

Colon cancer incidence and mortality rates are highest in African American men and women, but colon cancer screening has been proven to reduce deaths from the disease. By decreasing the number of people diagnosed with colon cancer and by finding a higher proportion of cancers at early, more treatable stages, screening has decreased rates in California by 18 percent among African Americans.

“We have the opportunity to significantly reduce California death rates from colon cancer through regular screening,” said David F. Veneziano, CEO, American Cancer Society, California Division, Inc. “This cancer can be prevented through early detection and removal of polyps. We hope that Californians will use March – National Colon Cancer Awareness Month – as an opportunity to make screening a priority and talk to their doctors, family members and friends about getting tested. It’s a conversation that could save lives.”

An estimated 14,530 cases of colorectal cancer and 5,120 deaths are expected to occur in California. Risk factors for colon cancer include a personal family history of the disease, which makes it necessary to learn the family’s colon cancer history, and communicate findings with a doctor. The American Cancer Society recommends the following tests to find colon cancer early: Tests That Detect Precancerous Polyps and Cancer •

Flexible sigmoidoscopy every five years, or •

Colonoscopy every 10 years, or •

Double contrast barium enema (DCBE) every five years, or •

CT colonography (CTC) every five years

Tests That Primarily Detect Cancer •

Annual guaiac-based fecal occult blood test (gFOBT) with high test sensitivity for cancer, or •

Annual fecal immunochemical test (FIT) with high test sensitivity for cancer, or •

Stool DNA test (sDNA), with high sensitivity for cancer, interval uncertain.

Tests that have a higher likelihood of finding polyps and cancer are preferred if patients are willing to use them and have access.

Healthy lifestyle behaviors can also reduce risk of colon cancer. Studies show that being overweight or obese increases colon cancer risk, as do diets high in red and processed meats. The American Cancer Society recommends that African American adults engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity five or more days a week; and consume a healthy diet that includes five or more servings of vegetables and fruits each day, whole grains (instead of processed grains and sugars), limited alcohol and processed and red meats, and controlled portion sizes. In addition, long-term smoking (for more than four decades) increases colon cancer risk by 30 to 50 percent. To help reduce cancer risk from smoking, the Society supports Proposition 29 which will appear on California’s June 5, 2012 ballot. The proposition will increase the tobacco tax by $1 and invest nearly $600 million per year for cancer research. It will keep 200,000 youth from becoming smokers and prevent more than 100,000 premature deaths, including those from colon cancer.

Thanks to improvements in prevention, early detection, and treatment, more than a million people in the U.S. count themselves as survivors of colon cancer. Regularly scheduled cancer screening can save lives and help achieve the American Cancer Society’s goal of creating a world with less cancer and more birthdays. Whether a person is worried about developing colon cancer, making decisions about treatment, or trying to stay well after treatment, the American Cancer Society can help. Visit cancer.org or call 1.800.227.2345 for free information and details about free cancer patient/caregiver support programs.

SBVC Hosts Education for Prosperity Forum

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By John Coleman

Despite the wind, rain, and cold, community members, educators, and students came out for the recent Education Community Forum, at the newly constructed San Bernardino Valley College campus (SNVC). They attended classes and workshops for prospective students and for parents (in English & Spanish). They learned about such educational opportunity programs as the "Valley Bound" program, a program designed to pay all expenses for qualified first year enrolled students at SBVC. They were provided the opportunity to meet and talk with many campus and community members who advocate for the educational success of all students.

Heart Healthy: Heart & Soul Line Dance Program

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Years before Harriette Stuckey returned to college to earn a Masters degree in Public Health (MPH), she already was working as a health educator in industrial and community services, focused on raising the awareness of health and fitness levels. Then, as she pursued her graduate- level studies, she learned that Americans of African ancestry died eight (8) or more years younger than Americans of European ancestry.

It is a known fact that within the African American community we die more from heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, and cancer than other ethnicities. These factors can be drastically reduced by not smoking, changing our diet, and by exercising regularly.

Harriette Stuckey is a thinker as well as a doer. She has traveled extensively and seen dancing as a pleasurable behavior almost electric slide, there was square dancing. Blends, like Heart & Soul Line Dancing emerged and spread providing social- engagement while burning calories during low-impact exercises thus putting health education theories into practice within a range of seniors at community and recreation locations around the Inland Empire.

At the recent 8th Annual Mardi Gras Celebration held at the Palomares Community Center approximately 250 revelers attending from as far away as Las Vegas and the Bay Area took advantage of the opportunity to learn moves developed by health clubs springing up while learning that they can remain active and healthy by dancing.

For information about heart-healthy (quality of long life) exercise programs such as heart, body & soul line- dance programs, contact soullinedance@earthlink.net or 951.640.7888.

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