BlueCross Health Foundation Awards Grant to Count It! Lock It! Drop It!TM
Count, Lock and Drop your pills! That’s the message from the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation, which is teaming up with the state Department of Health and the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition to reduce prescription pain medication abuse in Tennessee.
To help address the state’s opioid epidemic, the BlueCross Health Foundation is providing a $1.3 million grant to expand the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition’s Count It! Lock It! Drop It!™ program to counties with high rates of opioid deaths. The funding will support training and outreach efforts including a public education advertising campaign.
According to Dr. David Reagan, chief medical officer for the Tennessee Department of Health, opioid abuse is one of Tennessee’s most concerning public health issues. “It will take various parties and a multifaceted approach to tackle this crisis, and we’re pleased to have the state’s largest insurer commit itself to this cause,” Reagan said.
In 2015, BlueCross covered more than 1 million opioid prescriptions for its members – that’s more than 66.6 million painkillers dispensed. “We know pain medication is necessary to treat many conditions; but there is a clear need to engage in clinical and social efforts across the state to prevent the many tragedies that individuals, families and entire communities have faced from opioid abuse and addiction,” explained Dr. Andrea Willis, chief medical officer for BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee.
Count It! Lock It! Drop It! was co-founded in 2011 by Christina Merino and Kristina Clark of the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition. The goal was to build a comprehensive, community-level approach to prescription drug misuse. The program ensures patients are receiving the same messaging at doctors’ offices and pharmacies, as well as integrating counseling on the addictive nature of certain medications and teaching drug safety skills.
The Count It! Lock It! Drop It! program encourages community members to:
- Count It!Count pills once every two weeks to monitor theft and help ensure medications are taken properly.
- Lock It!Lock and store them in a secure place where others would not think to look.
- Drop It!Take unused or expired medications to drop boxes located in participating law enforcement offices or pharmacies or during take-back events.
“Many adults and teens do not understand the dangers of misusing prescription drugs, and think of them as safe because they are prescribed by a doctor,” said Christina Merino, co-founder of Count It! Lock It! Drop It! “Our program educates everyone from health care providers to grandparents on the need to use, store and dispose of prescription medications safely.”
BlueCross Community Relations and Foundations Director Dawn Abel pointed to research that shows 55 percent of those who abuse painkillers in Tennessee get them from a friend or relative who has a prescription. “Count It! Lock It! Drop It! has a proven track record of educating communities on the importance of safeguarding and properly disposing of prescriptions,” Abel said.
Last year, the Count It! Lock It! Drop It! program in Coffee County collected approximately 600 pounds of various medications at its three drop boxes in the Coffee County Sheriff’s Office, the Manchester Police Department and the Tullahoma Police Department. The estimated street value of the collected opioids was more than $11,387.
Count It! Lock It! Drop It! is currently operating in 32 counties statewide – 11 in East Tennessee, 18 in Middle Tennessee and three in West Tennessee – with its educational and grassroots program. A main element of the program is permanent drop boxes located in law enforcement offices. By September, all 95 Tennessee counties will have a box in place. For more information on Count It! Lock It! Drop It! or to locate a drop box, visit www.countitlockitdropit.org.
The 2015-2020 USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend eating seafood at least twice a week and to take in at least 250mg of omega-3s EPA+DHA per day. Currently only 1 in 10 Americans follow this guideline.
As part of SNP’s 3-year public health education Healthy Heart Pledge campaign, the 2016 Seafood Nutrition Partnership Recipe Sweepstakes encourages people to show how easy, delicious, and nutritious fish and shellfish can be to add to weekly meals. “We are excited to introduce this consumer education program to teach Americans about the critical importance seafood nutrition has in supporting heart and brain health,” said SNP Executive Director Linda Cornish. “This program not only highlights the health benefits seafood offers, but also how simple, easy and delicious it is to incorporate seafood at least twice a week into your regular meals.”
Beginning today through October 21st, people are encouraged to share a photo of a seafood dish prepared using 5 ingredients or less (not counting spices/garnishes) on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtags #HealthyHeartPledge and #SNPSweepstakes for a chance to win a $250 gift card. A total of ten winners will be randomly selected in accordance with the Sweepstakes Schedule, with winners being announced on http://www.SNPSweepstakes.com and SNP’s Instagram and Twitter accounts.
Official instructions and rules of the sweepstakes are as follows:
- Share a photo of a seafood dish prepared using five (5) ingredients or less (not counting spices/garnishes) and list the ingredients or provide a link to a page, which includes a list of the ingredients, and, if possible, include the directions in the social post or via a link.
- Post to Twitter or Instagram using the hashtags #HealthyHeartPledge and #SNPSweepstakes.
- A total of ten winners will be randomly selected in accordance with the Sweepstakes Schedule to win a $250 gift card. People can submit one entry per day, and SNP will announce winners on http://www.SNPSweepstakes.com, and SNP’s Instagram and Twitter accounts.
- No purchase necessary. The sweepstakes ends on 10/21/16. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. and D.C., 18 and older. For Official Rules, including odds, and prize descriptions, visit http://www.SNPSweepstakes.com. Void where prohibited.
- By posting the #HealthyHeartPledge hashtag, you are taking SNP’s Healthy Heart Pledge. This means you recognize seafood is a healthy choice for you and your family and you’ll pledge to eat at least two servings of seafood each week and supplement with omega-3s. You can learn more about the Healthy Heart Pledge and sign up for our newsletter for information to help you eat more sustainable seafood on http://www.seafoodnutrition.org/healthy-heart-pledge.html
About Seafood Nutrition Partnership
Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to inspire a healthier America through partnerships that raise awareness about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood. SNP, a member of the Clinton Global Initiative and NCD Roundtable, leads education efforts to help Americans gain the skills to select, order and prepare fish and shellfish, and to inspire a healthier America by promoting a nutrient-rich diet that includes seafood and omega-3s. In October 2015, SNP launched a three-year national public health education campaign. For more information, visit SeafoodNutrition.org.
Glassman, Wyatt, Tuttle & Cox, PC Attorney Lauran Stimac has recently joined the Board of Directors of Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS) and will serve as the sponsorship chair for the first annual Justice for All Ball benefiting MALS. “Our community’s need for the services MALS provides grows each year, and we must raise funds to provide MALS with the resources to meet those needs,” said Stimac.
Stimac is a Memphis-based trial attorney with the Firm where she handles medical malpractice, legal malpractice matters and assists attorneys facing board-related disciplinary complaints.
MALS is the primary provider of civil legal representation to low income families in the western Tennessee counties of Shelby, Fayette, Tipton and Lauderdale. MALS helps individuals and families facing critical, sometimes life-threatening, situations including domestic violence, mortgage foreclosure, wrongful denial of healthcare and other necessary services, consumer fraud or predatory lending and special challenges of children and the elderly. MALS does not accept fees for its services and does not handle criminal cases, class action lawsuits or fee generating cases such as personal injury or worker’s compensation
“I’m very excited about this opportunity to help our Memphis community through providing a quality service to the underserved and giving hope to those who might have once felt vulnerable during their time of need,” said Stimac. “I’m also super excited about this year’s Justice for All Ball, and I hope that the legal community will come out in full force to support this worthy cause.”
The Justice for All Ball is a superhero-themed event that will be held at the Halloran Center on Saturday, October 15, 2016. It will be a fun night with live music, a silent auction, and more – all to benefit MALS.
Individuals and businesses interested in participating in the Justice for All Ball as sponsors should contact Lauran Stimac directly at (901) 527-4673. Tickets are $125 each with all proceeds going to support MALS. The black tie (and cape) optional event will begin at 7pm. For more information on purchasing tickets, please visit The Justice For All Ball website.
About Glassman, Wyatt, Tuttle & Cox:
Glassman, Wyatt, Tuttle & Cox is a boutique law firm engaging only in civil trial litigation in courts primarily around the Mid-South, including in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky and Alabama. Our lawyers focus their talents on helping clients achieve the best possible results in their trial and arbitration matters both inside and outside the courtroom. The firm is renowned for its ability to handle the most difficult legal situations with targeted and steadfast intensity.
Recent high school graduates and adults who are interested in attending college this fall are invited to attend an Education Fair sponsored by the Memphis Talent Dividend/Graduate Memphis. They will have an opportunity to complete the Free Application for Financial Student Aid (FAFSA). This event is free and open to the public and will be held on Friday, July 15th from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Ben Hooks Library, 3030 Poplar Ave., Memphis, TN 38111.
This Education Fair will conclude this year’s campaign that kicked-off on January 7th. Last year, the Memphis Talent Dividend/Graduate Memphis community partners assisted with completing more than 7,000 FAFSA applications. So far this year more than 66% of high school graduates have completed forms to help them enroll in an educational opportunity post high school graduation.
For more information about the Education Fair and the Memphis Talent Dividend/Graduate Memphis, contact Alton Cryer, Program Coordinator at 901.278.0016 or AcryerA@leadershipmemphis.org.
More About Leadership Memphis
Leadership Memphis is a non-profit, community leadership development organization. Its mission is to prepare and mobilize leaders to work together for the good of the whole community. Founded in 1977 as The Memphis Institute of Public Responsibility, the organization has trained and graduated more than 2,500 leaders from its signature programs: Executive, FastTrack, Criminal/Juvenile Justice, and Grassroots. Its Action initiatives are Memphis Talent Dividend/Graduate Memphis, and SUCCESS High Schools.
Submission Deadline is Monday, July 18, 2016 – This Year’s Theme is “And Justice for All!”
The National Civil Rights Museum (NCRM) is looking for young poets to share their creativity in a poetry slam with an emphasis on equality and justice, now. “And Justice for All!” is the theme for the 3rd Annual National Civil Rights Museum Drop the Mic Poetry Slam on August 13, 2016. Poets in the age groups of 14 – 17, 18 – 25 and 26 – 35 can compete for two top cash prizes per age group at $1,000 and $750.
We are starting early so poets can save the date for this event. “The Drop the Mic Poetry Slam was spectacular the first two years, each year surpassing the last in attendance, buzz, and creativity,” said Faith Morris, NCRM Chief Marketing and External Affairs Officer. “We hope that this year with everything that has transpired in this country our justice theme will bring out the passion in our young poets. The Slam provides participants with a platform to artistically express themselves about important issues facing society.”
Submissions must be original works addressing the topic “And Justice for All!” Each entrant must submit a YouTube or Vimeo video link in their online registration. Videos should be no longer than 2 minutes. Only one entry per person will be considered. All videos must be received by Monday, August 1, 2016 by 5pm.
Top finalists will be selected and must perform live in front of a panel of spoken word judges at the National Civil Rights Museum on Saturday, August 13, at 5pm in order to win. For more information and to enter visit http://civilrightsmuseum.org/dropthemic/.
The hashtags used this year with information about the Poetry Slam are #JusticeForAll, #NCRMDropTheMic. Event supporters are encouraged to share through social media.
About The National Civil Rights Museum
The NATIONAL CIVIL RIGHTS MUSEUM, located at the historic Lorraine Motel where civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated, is the only Museum of its kind in the country that gives a comprehensive overview of the American Civil Rights Movement from 1619 to the present. The Museum is intended to bring the movement to life, place the events in a historical perspective and provide a focus of national remembrance. Since the Museum opened in 1991, millions of visitors from around the world have come, including more than 70,000 students annually. Recognized as a center for civil rights and social change, the Museum is steadfast in its mission to share the culture and lessons from the Movement and explore how this significant era continues to shape equality and freedom globally.
Through interactive exhibits, historic collections, storytelling, dynamic speakers and events, the museum offers visitors a chance to walk through history and learn more about a tumultuous and inspiring period of change. Then, invites you to Join the Movement, take a stand and share your voice on issues that impact our society.
An internationally acclaimed cultural institution, the Museum was recognized as USA Today’s Top 10 Best American Iconic Attractions; Top 10 Best Historical Spots in the U.S. by TLC’s Family Travel; Must See by the Age of 15 by Budget Travel and Kids; Top 10, American Treasures by USA Today; and Best Memphis Attraction by The Commercial Appeal.
The National Women’s Political Caucus hosted a Train the Trainers Workshop in Seattle, Washington on April 23 and 24. The Carter Malone Group, LLC President /CEO Deidre Malone participated in the workshop and received certification as a trainer to recruit, educate, train, coach and build the confidence of women seeking elected or appointed office.
“I’m thrilled to be a part of the first graduating class of NWPC’s Train the Trainers workshop,” said Malone. “The instructor, Cathy Allen, provided the tools to set in motion the momentum needed to increase the number of women who successfully run for office and win. I’m looking forward to doing my part to advance more women in to leadership and elected and appointed positions.”
Joining Malone from Tennessee in receiving certification was Tennessee Democratic Party Executive Committeewoman and Memphis Women’s Political Caucus member Adrienne Pakis Gillon.
For organizations interested in learning more securing Deidre Malone for training, contact The Carter Malone Group at 901.278.0881 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Site Is a Great Resource to Help Improve Your Heart Health
The Seafood Nutrition Partnership (SNP) Memphis, together with The Carter Malone Group, has launched a new, Memphis-focused website to encourage Memphians to improve their heart health by eating at least two seafood meals a week.
The site, www.snpmemphis.com, has information about upcoming health events, recipes, an introduction to eating healthy and sharing those habits on social media. There is a link to take the Healthy Heart Pledge http://www.seafoodnutrition.org/healthy-heart-pledge.html, SNP’s national pledge to help Americans improve their heart health by eating seafood at least twice a week.
“We’ve seen excellent progress in the Memphis market in terms of people knowing about the health benefits of seafood,” said Linda Cornish, executive director, Seafood Nutrition Partnership. “This site gives Memphians another educational tool to guide them down a path to a healthier diet and lifestyle.” It also links to the national website www.seafoodnutrition.org that gives more information on the national campaign.
Since 2014, the national non-profit Seafood Nutrition Partnership has been working in Memphis to spread awareness of healthy eating and the benefits of seafood, hosting health fairs and nutritional seminars. The Memphis SNP Team is available to attend local events to educate the public on the benefits of eating seafood at least two times a week.
Along with launching the new site, SNP Memphis is also promoting a new social media hashtag, #Seafood2xWkMEM (seafood two-times per week Memphis), for Memphians to share their healthy eating habits.
SNP Memphis will be involved in the Southern Women’s Show at the Agricenter from Friday, March 11 to Sunday, March 13, and the My Healthy Tennessee Health Fair on Saturday, March 12 at Raleigh Assembly of God Church. For more information please contact email@example.com or call 901-278-0881.
For every Memphian and Shelby Countian who takes the pledge, we are donating a can of seafood to the Mid-South Food Bank.
About the Seafood Nutrition Partnership
Seafood Nutrition Partnership is a 501(c) 3 whose mission is to inspire a healthier America through partnerships that raise awareness about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood. Through its education efforts, the organization aims to help Americans gain the skills to select, order and prepare fish and shellfish, and to inspire a healthier America by promoting a nutrient-rich diet that includes seafood. SNP is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative and the NCD Roundtable. For more information visit: http://snpmemphis.com
Students looking for help with post-secondary education costs can get a head-start on filing out the essential FAFSA form at workshops across Shelby County the weekend of February 6th and 7th. The FAFSA Memphis Weekend is where organizations and churches are hosting workshops for students to complete their FAFSA forms.
One local leader, Pastor Geno Gibson of Olivet Baptist Church, is doing his part to make sure graduating seniors and non-traditional students fill-out their FAFSA forms. “I ask my fellow clergy men and women to host a workshop and help your members and residents in your community obtain financial assistance for college,” said Gibson. At Olivet they have the Seeds of Destiny Scholarship, ACT Preparation, FAFSA Assistance and College and Career Readiness Programs.
Some locations where workshops will be held include:
Whitehaven Branch Library Feb. 5th & 6th 2:30 p.m. – 5 p.m.
East Shelby Library Feb. 6th 2:30 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Benjamin Hooks Library February 6th 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Frayser Library February 6th 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Last year more than 7,000 high school seniors completed the FAFSA. Memphis Talent Dividend and their partners are trying to make sure that eligible students and adults interested in secondary education have an option to receive free federal funds.
For more information about the FAFSA Weekend and how you can get involved, contact Alton Cryer, program coordinator for Memphis Talent Dividend at 901.278.0016 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit the website at www.FAFSAMemphis.com . The Memphis Talent Dividend is a part of Leadership Memphis.
Carver High School seniors and parents were on hand this afternoon attending the kick-off for the Free Application for Financial Student Aid (FAFSA) Memphis 2016-2017 Awareness Campaign. This program is organized in Memphis and Shelby County by the Memphis Talent Dividend. The focus of this campaign is to build awareness of financial aid opportunities for graduating high school seniors and non-traditional students.
This event is one of several scheduled during the next couple of months. “Last year, Memphis Talent Dividend was able to assist more than 7,000 students with their application process,” said Renee McCreight, Director of Memphis Talent Dividend. “Our goal is to increase that number through a series of scheduled events and through partner organizations hosting FAFSA workshops.”
Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell spoke on the importance of this campaign. “The future of this community lies in the investment we put in our youth,” said Mayor Luttrell. “It is essential that we support every effort in helping students continue their education after high school, as well as adults seeking to complete their degree. Not only will our individual citizens benefit from college degrees, but families will be impacted for generations to come.”
The weekend of February 6th is FAFSA Memphis Goal Weekend where churches and organizations across the county will work with students to complete their forms. If an organization is interested in participating they can contact Alton Cryer, Program Coordinator for the Memphis Talent Dividend at 901.278.0016 or email@example.com. Free workshops will be held through June 30th of this year.
The FAFSA MEMPHIS campaign is presented by the Memphis Talent Dividend and its partners and supported by a grant from the Kresge Foundation.
Leadership Memphis is a non-profit, community leadership development organization. Its mission is to prepare and mobilize leaders to work together for the good of the whole community. Founded in 1977 as The Memphis Institute of Public Responsibility, the organization has trained and graduated more than 2,500 leaders from its signature programs: Executive, FastTrack, Criminal/Juvenile Justice, and Grassroots. Its Action Initiatives are Memphis Talent Dividend/Graduate Memphis, and SUCCESS High Schools.
The group of charter schools is opening the doors for the community to learn more about their schools and mission.
Aspire Public Schools are offering fresh opportunities for some of Memphis’ most populated communities to engage with the exciting charter school. In October, Aspire Hanley Schools are opening their doors to invite the community into the schools to learn more about their mission and commitment to the communities their schools are located in.
Aspire Hanley Open House
Thursday, October 22nd – 10am and 6pm
Aspire Hanley School – 680 Hanley Street, Memphis, TN 38114
Orange Mound residents will get a chance to tour the Aspire Hanley school and learn about its curriculum and vision of “College for Certain.”
CONTACT: Jonnie Hatten – 901.361.9647
Aspire Public Schools operates 38 high-performing, college-preparatory public charter schools serving 15,000 students in underserved communities across California and Memphis, Tenn. Founded in 1998, Aspire is one of the nation’s largest open-enrollment public charter school systems serving predominantly low-income students, delivering a rigorous College for Certain education to students in grades K-12. An unrelenting focus on college preparedness led to 100 percent of graduating Aspire seniors being accepted to four-year colleges or universities over the last six years. Currently in its 17th academic year, Aspire is one of the nation’s first charter school systems. Visit Aspire Public Schools at www.aspirepublicschools.org.