Insight News

Feb 06th


From the jail track to the well track: Reducing the impact of incarceration on children

One of my family members spent most of his life in jail.  It was strange because whenever he got out, he seemed to be totally disconnected from what was going on in the world.  Cell phones, the internet, DVDs and “texting” were invented while he was incarcerated.  More importantly, all of us—his children, parents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins and best friends-continued with our day to day lives- wondering every day (or at least every so often) whether he was “okay” or not.  Before going to prison, when it came to making good decisions, he seemed most often to make the wrong choices for himself.  When it came to handling conflict, he would do anything to avoid being “punked” or shamed into backing down or making a compromise.  When it came to anger, he seemed to choose to express it through violence and confrontational approaches.

From my spirit: Sacred, special, and unique

I am not a theologian; however, it would be very difficult for me to practice as a Black psychologist if I did not understand the concepts of faith and spirituality.  In fact a recent survey ("Faith," Barna by Topic: African Americans, indicted that 52.8% of African-Americans believe overwhelmingly in an Authoritarian God, and compared to 66 percent of whites, 83 percent of African Americans say their religious faith is very important in their lives (2001).  Therefore, it is not strange to me that I believe from my Spirit, that every human being is a child of a Living (not dead) God and that we are sacred, special, and uniquely created.  I believe with all of my heart that even the lowest among us is worthy of love, respect, hope and power.  I believe that when people have suffered as much as many of us have, that we have earned a right to be well.  I also believe that somewhere in our past, the price has already been paid for us ---by grandmothers who had calloused knees scrubbing floors in rich folk’s houses, and grandfathers who pushed brooms and mops as janitors, and aunties who “did hair in the kitchen.”

Diabetes costs area $2 billion a year

Diabetes costs area $2 billion a yearLast month, Novo Nordisk awarded sponsorships totaling $100,000 to 4 Minneapolis-based community organizations to support programs that educate people living with type 2 diabetes on how to better manage their diabetes and reduce the risk of long-term diabetes related complications. The sponsorships are part of the Novo Nordisk Community Care program, which aims to promote enduring, sustainable change for people living with diabetes. The groups represent diverse communities in Minneapolis and are working diligently to help improve patients’ lives. 

Trash haulers Go Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness

Between the normal colorless, dark and rather bland trash containers, expect to see beautiful pink waste carts throughout the Twin Cities this fall, in a special Curb Cancer campaign by a group of local trash haulers.

Self Determination and how to actually lose weight

Obesity is a deadly, costly, and prevalent problem in the United States.  According to the Center for Disease Control about one-third of U.S. adults (33.8%) are obese.  Likewise, since 1980, obesity prevalence among children and adolescents has almost tripled, with significant racial and ethnic disparities existing such that non-Hispanic black girls are significantly more likely to be obese than non-Hispanic white girls.  In fact, Non-Hispanic blacks have the highest rates of obesity (44.1%) compared with Mexican Americans (39.3%), all Hispanics (37.9%) and non-Hispanic whites (32.6%).  Approximately 17% (or 12.5 million) of children and adolescents aged two—19 years are obese.  Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer.  In 2008, the medical costs associated with obesity were estimated at $147 billion –paying $1,429 more for obese people than those of normal weight.

Moving from pain to power

I remember when I was around eleven years old growing up in the segregated rural town in the south.  The white folks lived on one side of the tracks and the Black folks—well, we lived on the other.  We seemed to walk everywhere –mostly because there were no cabs or busses—but also because we kids had more freedom if we did not rely on our parents to take us places.  The distance from our house “in the country” to “the flats” (which is where the Black folks lived), was about four miles.  One day, my brother, sister and I asked if we could go visit our friends in the flats.  My mother quickly gave us permission but having heard at the church (Mt. Zion) that the local bootlegger had opened up a “honky tonk” with a Jukebox, she warned us not to go there. 

Hypoallergenic nutritional counselor offers resource for African American families

Hypoallergenic nutritional counselor offers resource for African American familiesDid you know that in comparison to other races of children, African American boys are more than 4 times likely to have moderate to severe food allergies? This problem could be classified as a “silent epidemic” and as a result, African American mothers are often playing a game of Russian roulette when they purchase ANY prepackaged food or beverage for a child with food allergies.
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    Jessica Jackson, co-pastor, Impact Living Christian Center in South Minneapolis.

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