CLiCK, the Commercially Licensed Cooperative Kitchen in Willimantic is the subject of a profile in the August issue of Connecticut Magazine. As a follow up to their article on nutrition and food service at Connecticut public schools, CLiCK’s efforts in continuing education and community partnerships is described as part of an effort to revitalize Windham County’s food culture and economy. Read the full article: CLiCK Continuing Education CT Magazine.
Tools for Healthy Living, a curriculum about healthy homes and food safety, has been accepted as a national peer-reviewed curriculum by the National 4-H Council. The curriculum, designed for students in grades four through six who are in afterschool 4-H programs, was developed by UConn Extension as part of a 5-year Sustainable Community Project grant from USDA’s CYFAR (Children, Youth, and Families at Risk) program.
To implement this curriculum, a trained facilitator helps students explore the principles of a healthy home and learn how they can help to make their own homes and their communities healthier. According to federal housing, environmental, and public health authorities, a healthy home is clean, dry, safe, in good repair, with fresh air, and free of pests and dangerous chemicals.
More information is available on the UConn Extension website.
The volume includes contributions from participants in a Summer 2013 Campus Compact workshop and conference. This group of practitioner-scholars in higher education community engagement were committed to developing a new resource to help guide professional development, career advancement, and unit guidance in the civic and community engagement field. Through a collective process, they developed a framework of competencies for community engagement professionals. These four areas, as outlined in the publication, are Organizational Manager, Institutional Strategic Leader, Field Contributor, and Community Innovator.
Contributing to the book is Julia M. Yakovich, Program Manager for Service Learning in UConn’s Office of Public Engagement.
The purpose of the book is to support strategic professional development and it should be used to help community engagement professionals to reflect on their own practice and growth. This reflective practice should be connected to wider discussions of how campuses can continue to institutionalize civic and community engagement, and the book provides concrete ways for community engagement professionals to link personal vocation to systemic change.
More information about the book is available through the publisher.
The work of Associate Professor Syma Ebbin and students in the Fall 2014 Agriculture and Resource Economics class has been published in the Spring 2015 issue of GOSA News – the newsletter of the Groton Open Space Association. Their article, Is the Grass Always Greener? Assessing Lawn Care Practices of Connecticut Residents, provides information on the consequences of lawn maintenance practices for the health of the soil, streams and Long Island Sound while highlighting best practices for lawn loving property owners.
This year’s Minority Health Month theme, “30 Years of Advancing Health Equity; The Heckler Report: A Force for Ending Health Disparities in America,” in commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the Report of the Secretary’s Task Force on Black and Minority Health (also known as the Heckler Report). This theme reflects our collective efforts to accelerate momentum towards achieving a nation free of disparities in health and health care and the ways in which the Heckler Report has served as a driving force for the monumental changes in research, policies, programs and legislation to advance health equity.
See the events calendar for events of interest happening throughout the state in April.
A federal study shows that 1 in 4 Americans volunteered through an organization and two-thirds helped their neighbors. Connecticut has an annual volunteer rate of 29.1 percent, with 797,150 volunteers serving 87.1 million total hours per year, ranking the state 18th in the nation. The annual Volunteering and Civic Life in America research, released by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and the National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC), shows that service to others continues to be a priority for millions of Americans.
Recently, the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education (OCTAE) at the Department of Education released the report, Making Skills Everyone’s Business: A Call to Transform Adult Learning in the United States. The data and strategies outlined might be of interest to your office and the communities with which you work. The strategies are based on a comprehensive engagement process and research that took place over the last year.
According to the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC), which tested adult skills in literacy, numeracy, and problem solving in technology-rich environments, 36 million Americans have low literacy skills, nearly 24 million of whom are part of the workforce. In addition, nearly 46 million Americans struggle with numeracy. These skills issues have significant negative impacts on individuals, their families, and their communities. In contrast, higher skills are linked to improved economic and social outcomes, such as better employment, earnings, and health; social mobility; and greater civic engagement.
Making Skills Everyone’s Business report offers suggestions for how to establish convenient, effective, high-quality learning opportunities for low-skilled youth and adults. Specifically, the Making Skills report offers seven strategies that hold great promise for improving the conditions that create and perpetuate poor literacy, numeracy, and problem solving. Two of these strategies speak directly to creating career pathways and upskilling of frontline workers. These strategies do not partition the responsibilities of the public and private sectors; nor do they compartmentalize actions at the federal, state, regional, tribal, or local levels. These strategies are based on the principle of shared responsibility and acknowledge that America’s skills challenge is too large to address by any stakeholder group independently.