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Low-income kids face a wide summer nutrition gap

May 23, 2013
Low-income kids face a wide summer nutrition gap

By Lily Dayton

Over half the kids in California receive free or reduced lunch at school—yet the majority of these low-income kids don’t receive federally funded meals during the summer. Now schools and community organizations are coming together to make sure summer lunch reaches kids in need, even if they aren’t in summer school.

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Ballot-mandated drug treatment cut, despite success

May 9, 2013
Ballot-mandated drug treatment cut, despite success

By Robin Urevich

In 2000, California voters overwhelmingly approved Prop 36, a ballot measure that offers non-violent drug offenders treatment instead of jail. But now the Substance Abuse and Crime Prevention Act is on life support, if not altogether dead, despite data that shows it has saved taxpayers money and tamped down recidivism among its participants.

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San Mateo County courts strained by state prison reforms

May 7, 2013
San Mateo County courts strained by state prison reforms

By Callie Shanafelt

State prison reforms are supposed to reduce dangerously overcrowded prison populations and help to alleviate the state’s fiscal crisis. But trial courts in San Mateo are feeling the squeeze of the fiscal crisis and the reforms on the county.

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Faith-based organizations help step up ACA enrollment efforts

April 17, 2013
Faith-based organizations help step up ACA enrollment efforts

By Chris Richard

By the time national health-care reform takes effect next year, Los Angeles County health officials expect to enroll 300,000 people in an expanded Medi-Cal program. But some estimates put the number of people eligible for the low-income insurance coverage countywide at more than half a million. To help make up the difference, a coalition of churches, synagogues and nonprofits has launched an enrollment drive that invites people to sign up at the neighborhood church.

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Special court helps veterans with addictions

April 15, 2013
Special court helps veterans with addictions

By Callie Shanafelt

What happens at Veteran’s Treatment Court is anything but typical. Modeled on drug treatment courts, they provide extra support and treatment opportunities for vets.

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Seniors trade skills, build community

March 7, 2013
Seniors trade skills, build community

By Lynn Graebner

Asking for help is often hard for seniors, but it’s getting easier thanks to an innovative web-based program underway in Santa Cruz and cities across the U.S. Time banks let seniors and people of all ages exchange their skills and time for services they need. By sharing their talents, time bank members are knitting together a multigenerational community, building support networks and friendships.

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Graduate medical education opportunities expand in the San Joaquin Valley

March 6, 2013
Graduate medical education opportunities expand in the San Joaquin Valley

By Diana Hallare

A new crop of programs encourages more primary care docs to put down roots in the valley – while training them to serve a diverse population.

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Faith community nurses reach out for Central Valley health

January 30, 2013
Faith community nurses reach out for Central Valley health

Faith nurses help communities stay well in Fresno with duties ranging from home visits, help around the house, first aid – and much needed support for the sick.

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Community gardens cultivate food, job skills, hope

January 22, 2013
Community gardens cultivate food, job skills, hope

By Lynn Graebner

What started as a community garden in the Chinatown neighborhood of Salinas has blossomed into the Salinas-Marina Community Food Project. Three community gardens provide fresh food, life skills and a sense of community for the homeless, recovering addicts, unemployed and local residents.

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Fieldworkers who breastfeed find support

January 17, 2013
Fieldworkers who breastfeed find support

The federally funded program known as Women, Infants and Children, or WIC, is better known for providing food stamps to needy families, but it also encourages mothers to breastfeed through support and peer counseling. In Salinas, the Monterey County program has zeroed in on farmworkers who are new moms.

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