Monday, October 26, 2009

PathWays PA E-Newsletter: October 26, 2009

PA Budget

Even though the budget was signed weeks ago, funding for state related universities, museums, and hospitals is being held up until the gaming bill is complete.

House and Senate negotiators are still working on the tax rates for table games and the one-time license fees that casino operators would be required to pay.

Please continue to see our PathWays PA Policy Blog for updates on the budget and other important policy issues.

In an effort to improve future alerts, we have created a brief survey about PathWays PA Special Budget Alerts. Please take a few minutes and let us know what you thought of our Budget Alerts and how we may be able to improve them. Also, please stay tuned, as next year’s budget is already right around the corner.


Federal

Urge Your Senator to Extend Unemployment Benefits

Currently, 5.4 million Americans have been out of a job for six months or more. Approximately 7,000 workers run out of unemployment insurance each day. Hopes of getting a new job are slim as an average of six workers are competing for each job opening. All of these numbers add up to thousands of families facing cold weather with no job and no income.

A bill in the Senate would help families across the country by extending unemployment insurance. Tell your Senators to hurry up and extend unemployment insurance -- families cannot wait any longer!


State

Help Ensure Adequate Funding for the State Food Purchase Program

The Pennsylvania Association of Regional Food Banks is working with other concerned organizations throughout Pennsylvania to ask Governor Rendell to recommend adequate funding for the State Food Purchase Program in the next state budget.

To help, please click here and read the prepared letter to the Governor. If you agree that more resources should be provided to help Pennsylvanians struggling with hunger, click the "Sign-On" box to be taken to an email message form.

In your email, please include:

1. Organization Name

2. Organization Location [Municipality]

3. Your Name

4. Your Title

You and your organization will be added to the list of signers. Please only one email per organization. The deadline for signatures is Friday, October 30th.


Information/Events

PathWays PA – PathWays to the Stars 31st Anniversary Celebration

For the past 31 years, PathWays PA has offered residential programs and social services to vulnerable women and their children. Now, more than ever, the economic climate and rising unemployment rate emphasize the need for agencies like PathWays PA. We could never do the work we do and lend support to our 6,000 low-income clients without daily generosity from our corporate and individual donors. This year, at the PathWays to the Stars 31st Anniversary Celebration, we would like to pay tribute to those who assist us as we strive to help those in need.

WHEN: Thursday, October 29th 6:30 – 9:00
WHERE: Valley Forge Radisson 1160 First Ave, King of Prussia

As part of this event there will be a silent auction with items such as a corporate box at Citizens Bank Park, gift certificates to a number of amazing restaurants, and tickets to local cultural events. In addition to the silent auction each week the PathWays PA website will feature a different auction item.

This week’s featured item is Luxury Suite to see our 2008 World Champion and 2009 National League Champion Philadelphia Phillies & the New York Mets on Saturday, May 1, 2010.

Tickets to the PathWays to the Stars Celebration are only $50 in advance and $60 at the door, so please plan to join us! You can purchase tickets online by clicking here.


It's Time To Read The Bill!

Today, Monday, October 26th, from 5:00 am until 10:00 pm, health care reform supporters will be on lawn by the Liberty Bell (5th and Market) to read America’s Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009 (HR 3200). PathWays PA took part in reading the bill this morning. There will also be a candle light vigil at 6:30 this evening.

Health reform is crucial to the well-being of all Americans, so please stop by to show your support.


National Call In Day: Women of Color United for Health Reform

Congress is working to finalize a health reform bill that - if passed - will improve access to quality, affordable care but there are lots of people out there who are trying to block the process. We must add our voices to the debate.

On October 27, Women of Color United for Health Reform is hosting a NATIONAL CALL-IN DAY in support of real health reform. Take action and join the call!

1. Dial 877-264-4226

2. Ask the operator to connect you to your Senator or Representative and give the operator your zip code. Once the operator connects you to your Representative/Senator's office, a staffer in the office will answer the call.

3. Say: "My name is _____ ________, and I am calling today to ask you to support health reform.

I work hard, and I deserve a national health care system that works hard for me. As a woman of color, I see first-hand how the current system is failing. More people in my community are likely to be uninsured or under-insured. We also have a higher rate of chronic or pre-existing conditions, and spend a greater percentage of our income on health care than others.

This country should have a health care system that ensures everybody can access affordable, quality, culturally appropriate care over the course of their lifespan.

[If you would like, insert your own story!]

Remember to call both your Senators and you Representative!


Luncheon Briefing on Programs to Help the Uninsured Get Savings on Prescription Medicine

United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania and Pfizer are pleased to present a briefing on patient assistance programs for those who serve clients lacking prescription drug coverage. This important briefing will focus on programs available from Pfizer and other pharmaceutical companies to help those who are uninsured.

WHEN: Friday, November 13, 2009 12 Noon to 1:30pm
WHERE: United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania, 7 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia

Attendees will learn about the Pfizer Helpful Answers program and other industry programs. Program experts will be on hand to answer questions and provide materials to help communicate about these programs to individuals who need help paying for their medicines.

For those without health insurance or prescription drug coverage, getting their medicines can be a challenge. This briefing will enable you to make a difference in the lives of the people you serve.

Registration required. To reserve your space, please register by Thursday, November 5, 2009.
  • Register by email: Email pfizerhelpfulanswers@apcoworldwide.com. Please reference the event date in your response.
  • Register by phone: 1-877-852-0461 and provide Participant’s Name, Title, Organization, Address, Phone Number and Email address.
For more information about this event please call 1-877-852-0461.


End Childhood Hunger Listening Sessions

The United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutritional Service (FNS) will be hosting four webinar listening sessions to gather input from a range of stakeholders including current, former, or prospective beneficiaries of the nutrition assistance programs, State Governments, local program offices, professional organizations, private industry, community and faith-based organizations, and other interested parties. During these sessions, FNS staff will listen and record your recommendations and comments.

The webinar listening sessions are scheduled as follows:
  • Tuesday, November 17, 2009: 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm EDT
  • Thursday, November 19, 2009: 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm EDT
  • Monday, November 23, 2009: 2:30 pm – 4:00 pm EDT
  • Thursday, December 3, 2009: 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm EDT
All comments and suggestions are welcome and will be considered as our Agency creates a plan to end childhood hunger in the United States by 2015. While not required, participants are encouraged to provide written or electronic copies of their comments.

In order to ensure adequate availability of time for each speaker, please register. If you are unable to attend, please submit written comments and recommendations via email to ECH2015@fns.usda.gov. Also, please feel free to share this invitation with other colleagues and organizations.


Do Something Awards to Honor Young Social Change Activists

Since 1996, Do Something has honored some of America's best young "world-changers" (age 25 and under) with the Do Something Awards (formerly the Brick Awards).

Award winners will have:
  • identified a problem and have devised clear and measurable methods for addressing the problem
  • made a significant long-term commitment to improving the lives of others
  • cultivated long-term and respectful relationships within their community
  • demonstrated that they have directly and individually fueled the success of their work
  • extensively and tangibly improved the lives of others (the award is not for ideas)
  • created great awareness about their issues or causes
  • serve as program founders and/or leading activist/advocates
  • have a clear growth plan for their work that ensures sustainability and continued impact; and
  • already be recognized as top leaders within their issue or cause.
Partnerships or larger groups should select an individual they believe would best represent the project for the application. The applicant must be 25 or under, and must be a U.S. or Canadian citizen.


Digest This: Co-Sleeping and Bedsharing

Digest This is a weekly, hour-long online discussion hosted by WHYY’s Health and Science team every Tuesday at noon. You can pose questions to experts and our reporters; voice opinions, and connect to folks with similar concerns.

The topic of this week’s show, Tuesday October 27th at noon, is putting a baby to bed safely. Many pediatricians believe that sharing a bed with your infant is simply not safe. They say the risk of suffocation or strangulation is just too great. Other experts and many moms say bed-sharing allows parents to connect with their child and monitor a baby’s needs. They say it ups the chances for successful breast feeding. Public health officials say better education on safe sleeping could prevent sudden, unexpected infant deaths, but what should the message be? Join the discussion on co-sleeping and bed-sharing by clicking on the join chat button at the side of the WHYY News and Information page.


Do You Need Help Paying for Post-Secondary Education?

PathWays PA offers Individual Development Accounts (IDAs), a matched savings program that offers financial education while helping you save for school. Through the program, your savings can be matched at a rate of three-to-one. If you save $500, we will give you an additional $1500 to go towards your school expenses.

Applicants must meet program income guidelines, be working (full or part time), and be enrolled or accepted into an accredited institution.

If you are interested or have any questions, please e-mail Greg Potestio at gpotestio@pathwayspa.org.


Need Assistance With Public Benefits Applications?

PathWays PA provides assistance to those who need help applying for food stamps or other benefits. For further information, you can contact our office in Philadelphia 215-387-1470 or Delaware County 610-543-5022.

For more information about the services provided by PathWays PA please visit our website.


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