KJCE 1370AM>Audio on Demand>>Inside Austin 12/4/16

Inside Austin 12/4/16

Dec 4, 2016|

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Felt the Texas far walkers raise money for displaced families and victims of fire this holiday season Sunday just a great feat if detectives are walkers Christmas gala at that would connect to enjoy an evening of dinner drink holiday spirit and some great Pickens country music life. We bring in writer rebound well Abraham Weaver and any hearing VIP and individual tickets are limited and filling bath would be your ticket now detectives are walker dot org it's detectives are walker Taylor had been detected Sunday December 18 find out more and buy your ticket. At Texas fire walker dot org. I. Yeah. But there welcome back to inside us and I'm Matt Albers and we're here speaking about the stuff. The bus event happening December 9 through December 11 and I'm just gonna go ahead and go around the room and let everyone introduce themselves. My name is Amara and I Rick for Whole Foods Market here often Jane marketing in community relations my name installation opinion and I worked for the central Texas the banking community engagement. And my name is high and a bit o'neals and I'm with cap from a cell and I. Cool her wolf welcome. To show everyone I'm glad year old can make it so let's go heading gets started what is stopped the bus so it's up the last is -- annual few try if that capital metro and hoping youth and the big bank partnered together. And to raise it turns the Texans during the holiday season. It at really find few giants so this year we are parking puke capital metro buses outside the Whole Foods Market. I'm one down on the south mar area and then whine and they do mean and the especially parked right in front of the stories. And we're basically trying to stuff the bucks though partners can purchase food the Whole Foods Market and taken out to the bus to fill up the bus with food. And the cast make a donation after register but are basically trying to fill the glass with food and then serve and took a Clinton needs. So I hear your goal is 50000 meals for people on central Texas tracked. So this is the first year Richard immense. No this is our fifth year and we've been the same partners for the past five years so what would got all of this started a merry interest system. Yes so I think. You know every scientist at this is aware. Are we hope that they're aware of you know as Austin gets busy here in Austin grows we still have that need growing in our outlying counties in the outlying cities and capital much has been a great community apart and bars I has as a whole foods and think it was came up point where they wanted to do something really creative. To bring awareness that issue and also raise it in funds for the food bank knowing that during the holiday season we really are helping to feed thousands and thousands of people through that time. And Sosa the bust was a really creative idea that they came together and worked on an M can do for his mattress here and everybody enjoyed it and those are creative idea and the defense only ground we mormino surpassed goals and brings more feeling more funds for our community. And but it really what came from an organic ideal let's work together to get really treated and I know ways and monarch community. And aunts and great community partners raised a lot of students on through the use these families now Mara. If somebody walking through whole foods later on today. Would they be able to serve making donations. We are going to be opening. Donations up on December 1 at all of our Austin locations the for the first two weeks in December he can come to any story and Joni. I cash donation at any register. Which is pretty awesome and then the stuff the last weekend like they mentioned will be December 9 through eleventh and those are the that's the week you're really pushing those big pinching aid and donations. Also accepting cash donations because we know that both are very important. 2 does central Texas food bank say yes that is a number of ways that people can participate this. When you go in there is it like a set meal like a bag that's set aside that you can purchase or indeed do you get the around chopping. So we will have and that's our domain are downtown in our bee cave story we will have pre stuffed bags will be five or just under five dollars and they're going to be filled with some of the does most needed items and those they'll be available to just grab input into needed these. Big boxes that we'll have they'd been donation boxes or into the buses at the domain in downtown store. Just under five dollars sounds pretty inexpensive. Yes I mean you know it's not a lot but it's gonna go along way and instead goes back to those bags are gonna be four different items well and I also highly encourage people like. During Thanksgiving and there's things that you don't use any canned pop security team that you see on the list that you bot for the holidays and you don't end up using and you can ring get to a new applications. And topping off at the bus or at the food since that we're gonna have some pins also isn't distillers. That's a complaint you don't have to buy the thing from authentic you haven't actually came out of home I want to bring about the less he definitely can't now. How much truth can you fit into the bus he knows that even for my peers I know it's a lot. Pretty much on the lot I mean the the seat the buses are pretty vague about 35 feet and they have a lot of ground. And what we do is to put boxes inside the buses and then we stuff balls boxes inside because we don't want like bags flying around and things going on America. And then we also decorate the buses little lights. And we'd let kids linked come in there and take pictures exit and the steering will and we'll also get them out stickers. So it's a pretty funny that doubts about to ask is how like family oriented that the military is granted we are actually also excited this year distant you know it for the buses. Kind buyer is agreed to donate which are really excited about their wonderful foods markets and our favorite suppliers and there are. Going to begin being 5000. Bars this year helping celebrate the fifth anniversary. And they will be at the domain and the downtown location giving out time buyers to anyone who comes up those buses and donates nice. Who doesn't like free food break yeah exactly hit fifty so 50000 meals do you think that's going to be H. Challenge. Now making that the community will come together Afghanistan and really help us have that goal. And it's a lot of them aren't plane when it comes there register donations. One dollar equals form meals that are really help us had that goal we have. Because Griffey Mbenga really great purchasing power are allowed to buy food at a huge discount and really mean that dollar strapped. So when one night calls for a meals. Monetary donations are really gonna help a threat that the 2000 IR 50000 meal gold. So yes feared even if you're not able to come out that weekend to assess the bus if you've dialogue going on your at a town those first two weeks in the summer where accepting donations at every story. Yes starting December 1 heard and its in store only not on line in stir only yes okay cool. Now with the food bank. We do stuff every year. Especially around the holidays this is one reef while we all come together but the food bank isn't just open and a couple weeks before it. You know Thanksgiving and then closes on January 1 stray that. Apparently are both banned all year at this does tend to be air busiest time of the air and people. We love our very generous during the holiday is and we really you know I appreciate all their support during that time but. After the holidays did you see a drop in volunteers them and give and go back to work they get busy go back to school me completely understand. And that we do you know serve Clancy the entire year. Summer happens to be their biggest time of need when kids are out of school easily fuel water on the summer to make that work her reading enough meals for those kids that are. Out of school but yes here around your program from near around to make sure that our Clancy receiving food. And several different ways that are getting food to them through partner agencies across the 21 counties that we serve. As well assume normal food pantry is all of our partner pantries and soup kitchens and other organizations. Really working hard all year around ten makes that we're serving our community also I figure you have to be ready for anything like a natural disaster. People being displaced from home from their homes at any time of the year correct that's correct floods fires emergencies. Even in different areas recently we went so Louisiana to help out with the flooding that was happening Marron took a truckload of food over attack. Just support our local feed into Louisiana and make sure they had the resources they need. Loud to slanted as say that you know an addicting that adds. Back to deletions plan about volunteering. We actually can actually went as a team and volunteered at the food bank and it's really need to see. How much help they need with all the food they get all the donations and sorting and and just. It's a lot of work and I can see how early do you need a lot of help because a lot of people do need this food. As site eyes. I'd recommend highly recommend that you go in and volunteer at the food bank and see what it's like to sort doubles meals for people in need. Police icky to us a little bit more about volunteering yes so it's a really fun way to get involved an out and attending an lantern making a monetary donation and we and take volunteers as young as eight years also told an Iowa and the command Montero dance. And we have plenty of opportunities than we have volunteer shifts and our warehouse sorting food fix is a week that's Monday through Saturday in the morning from nine to twelve. And in the afternoon from 130 to 430. And the first using it every month as you can Catalina is a hundred when he spots open in every shift and free to come help us sort foods they really appreciate the help. The entire nation says well I'm not substituting things evening shifts for adults suck except for that first Tuesday. Of the month it's really easy to sign up you don't have to commit to anything huge within three hours shift and that's all you have to do if you want you or you come back every day be above that. Then but it online talent site until such as it being dot org click the volunteer but you create a quick accountants and it for the shift that you wanna come on chat. We knew post just for the next two months and Timothy and dance have you seen a shift in the next month they wanna bring your family and friends to. You go ahead and have now it's on the Connors who makes everybody attends but they're really fun I'm going to get involved and get back and you do you see. Our warehouse space and how much food as and then all of the that we do need while you're sorting. And checking for labels speaking Charles those cans are still clean things to dented. And then checking. Thorn in the boxes weighing them out they're really fun activity so there's a lot award to be done there is a lot of work can definitely see about 171000 volunteers every year. And they're the equivalent of about forty. I staff members of their huge part of why were able to do what we do December 9 or eleventh is. So the bus event at the domain and downtown stores check our whole foods is there anything else people should know about it. Yeah I mean that that's the big weekend the big push it's going to be fun will be a lot of energy cap metro is out there as well as essential Texas tubing get the classes in treating people. Again we'll have kind r.s for every when he donates should be. Really finding if you can't come that weekend bring your pinch hit them any time the first of the fourteenth to any store. Her come in and you make a generous donation any registered that time period as well. Ninety added any folks or downtown we have capital metro transit store. And it's really cool we actually did a display with a bunch at Cannes film that make it Christmas tree. And it talks loss of the bus so you can come to our store and drop off. Any food diet food items DreamWorks and and any time near downtown where is actress for us at about 209 west ninth street that's on nine them Ibaka. Okay cool so it's easy to find yes yet look for the they get big play playlist can ultimately think it entry is that the truth couldn't. Okay very well you know. It was a thousand cans or ray did. Her deficit until it was and it's at this time billing yet they remade the amount and and then there's some snow coming off the mound and than and we built the cans in the final a tree and they all. Reading greens so look Axel that's her professionally done visit the dream. Can you want more information and and carriage Unionists say it cap Mechel dot org slash stuff the bus. And it Ariza hash tags stuff the bus on any social media will be sending out tweets and and pony promoting the event on social media as well. Just think you for your support in our fifth anniversary in coming out to help us reach that goal let 50000 mile goal episode if you think is such. Ifill has an important organization at in this town because we do use her 21 count means. And a 46000 people every week so do you know that the nation's I am making do stuff the bus that even outside of staff of us now whether it's through where Kathy school or through church. And those funds are really going a long way and serving communities and families outside of Boston all the way out to Waco. Am and those are kids adults all daily groups all has populations that are receiving and benefits from these the fundraising hemisphere it's really really appreciate the support especially now. Well thank you I think I'll preview thank you for coming in day. Again that's stuff the bus happening December and ninth through eleven than you'd like to make a donation at any whole foods. You can go ahead and start doing that on December 1. The locations for a stopped the bus are going to be at the downtown whole foods and the domain stores. For more information you can visit cap metro dot org slash stopped the bus or is a hash tag. Stopped the bus is food Pena. You're going to need and you're going to need us all of us he's going to need to ask how we do want to. Yeah and and you're fit and he's going to need a determination. Passion is going to need the next generation of leaders to face the challenges the future of free. And we can't believe. You. Today for aids is scoring the next generation of leaders. Support us four H dog org. I think for joining us an insight Austin today and my next guest is cabaret Bates. She's a special events coordinator for the aids services of Austin temporary welcome to the program. Hey thanks for having me you know I'd like our listeners get to know who's speaking. So Camilo bit of history by you yeah. Assailants. As I moved here at Austin from Philadelphia. In early July and I've been working in as the field does aids services. For about. But even since I was younger had a lot of our projects list my family. That surrounded you know HIV awareness so my mom she has a nonprofit organization called the pandemonium productions. And when I was about twelve years old we did sheriff's own. I'm about HIV and how he you know has no color no race and anyone can get it. And so that was my first exposure to that Amazon knows my hat she had her partner of ten years. HIV let's still has HIV so I am that was my initial exposure and that made me want to do more work in this. Fields that sort of sparked an interest for you win. From what I got from your bio you felt like. People are often thrown off by the letters HIV and and people are kind of outcasts at from it when they when they come out too that maybe their family and friends. And you wanted the public to know that they're just human beings. Yes. So even when my introduced her partner to the whole family. I just sirens basis I cringed and I remembered this onetime. Am I wanted to tastes the ice team that amounts partner ahead and I drank some odd and my mom I pulled me aside and she is having to do that. You know she has HIV. And that dismay mean why do more research and learn about it and from then on and of course my mom became more educated about it but that initial reaction and that statement that came with her having HIV. This really just. And seem odd to me because you know person as a person and and just the fact that so many people don't. No you know the ways that you can get it even now days. Around and they still has fear like they don't want me you know sharing utensils or something or someone matches. That didn't sit well these cell hours undated do something about it in just. Educate people on the disease. Honestly very McCain of you just want to learn more about what HIV was there is and it instead of just how casting someone right away. That doesn't have to win every one so. You came here from Philadelphia area and so that's about a year. Now I'll only been here but they're mine flow do you like it. I don't like its empire it's has popped that credit. But now the weather is kind of getting magazines that I links bring more than summer about your rappers can't hear not an arraign the whole month those kinds. Yeah. And that's a gets like that and Texas so. So have you found your place in the aids services of us what they're not reach that to the community in all of our power Eli commander in what do you wanna do. I love my job right now. Especially because I did I worked. And an ISO and Philadelphia. And so a lot of that things that I am doing now is just on the larger level of unit. Things that I used to do and a pass out. I am I worked on and other large fund raising events and out with just. Other HIV clients in a really helped in the Italian community in Philly cell. And like doing outreach I like talking to people and getting to know people are getting though their stories and in being able to advocates for them. And I feel like being a special events Courtney there it's just a lot of. Educating and just trying to build awareness and getting out on the community and those are some my favorite things well what about collecting year round and maybe volunteering. Do you have that available for people's well. Sweet dale around so sum up a lot of our programs. Depends heavily on volunteers and. One program pounds that I always bring up as the food banks. I'll one thing with HIV people are living now days so. But there on medications and it. And a huge part is he knows staying healthy is your diet so. We have the food bank for our clients where they can come and get bags of groceries but the only actually have. Two staff members that work in the food bank and the rest is just completely volunteered so if anyone has interest did in signing got four or something like that. They can contact that it services Austin and they can go to our website. And a and yes Austin or Eric and I and our volunteer opportunities that way Alan we also have condom distribution and because. When those. Our largest here uses the no prevention. So it's anyone's saying you know put together some condom packs and some healthy. And sex kits that would be great as loud. Cabaret do you have anything that you would like to hand in the last words may do what you do for the foundation and our. Or around the what this watching CN. Out of this slop definitely means a lot to me. Being. And another it. Thing that motivated me to gain even more involved then how I've been in the past was the statistics surrounding I think. They've been disproportionate in a lot of communities such as African American community and the Hispanic community and just. Being a black Kwame and then knowing that you know 61%. Of all women. That eight contract HIV are black women so that definitely is one of the reasons why I walk. As well as just knowing family and friends. Who have come down with HIV. HIV doesn't have. Race Eric color or sex or gender and they can affect anyone. Camber rebates Allan thank you again for coming in and speaking with us today thinking. Again those temporary baits the special events coordinator for the aids service is a loss and if you like more information. On eight services a loss and about the walk or to volunteer or anything throughout the year he commits it AS Austin dot org again that's AS Austin dot org. This is inside Austin and will be right back. They'll detectives are walkers raised money for displaced families and victims of fire this holiday season Sunday just a great feat if detectives are walkers Christmas gala at that would Texas enjoyed evening at dinner drink holiday spirit and some great Pickens country music a lot. Would bring in writer rebound well Abraham Weaver and any hearing VIP and individual tickets are limited and selling faster beat your ticket now detect is far walker dot org it detectives are walker Taylor had been detected Sunday December 18 find out more and buy your ticket. At Texas fire walker dot org. Looks tense and us and our guests today are actually returning guest is Bobby painter if you don't remember him he it's actually the interim executive director. Per American gateways. Bobby welcome back to show thanks for having me. He gives some background of American gateways yes absolutely we're as central Texas nonprofit we're based in Austin that we also the large office in San Antonio. You provide immigration legal services at low or no cost to the immigrant community in central Texas focusing on people. Below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines and this is American gateways as one of the largest nonprofit immigration legal services in Texas yes that's correct. Right what kind of and with American gateways what what kind of things EC going in there. With with immigrants and families. One of the things that I liked I was a lot is just. The empowerment that comes through the stable immigration status we we work with. Clients from all over the world who come to this country and all sorts of circumstances we work a lot with refugees survivors of human trafficking in pretty serious crimes. And just being able to provide that platform. Immigration as a work permit that they know the knowledge that you don't have to worry about deportation or way going to be living. All of that serves to really empower our clients to go out and contribute to the communities they they do it. Perhaps a smaller scale than our arteries that each one contributes in their own. Way I think one statistic that I like to throw out there is it every year undocumented immigrants alone contribute more than. A billion dollars to the Texas on route to Texas through state and local taxes. So for the past thirty years you guys have been providing legal I've received for immigrants. On the field. Like the country is like split in half on refugees right now has that taken a hole on your job in any sense or where are you just powering through and we're powering through we take the position that. Applying for asylum is a human right that all immigrants irrespective of status have. Fundamental human rights and our objective through all of this is to make sure that they are empowered to claim has rights themselves. He has that I imagine there are fairly. Large nonprofit organization. And I think you help more people than you may have the manpower to. They that you may have available in our office CU tape volunteers at any time of the year. Yeah absolutely Nikkei volunteers. Both as interpreters and translators to take it volunteers who can help with administrative responsibilities at the office and me also focus a lot on professional volunteers may be. Physicians a kind of forensic medical evaluations or attorneys who want to take on a pro Bono case and all of that information is available on our website as well and you can sign up there and somebody will get in touch with you about. What opportunities are available any time. Bobby and do you have any last words. I think appoint an owner meek we as an organization are there to advocating and our all immigrants in central Texas not just the ones that. Had a successful. Architecture careers or film producer of the people who work every day to contribute to this community. Bobby don't think you again for joining us thanks for having me happy to come back and of. Again that was Bobby painters these interim executive director. Core American gateways. If you like more information on American gateways to visit their website American gateways dot org. Again American gateways dot org. This is a message of warning for people seeking legal status in the US. No Atari o.s and other unauthorized consultants try to take advantage of the confusion surrounding immigration reform. Don't let them take advantage of view. No new laws have been passed the deferred action program does exist but you should seek qualified legal help before applying. You may find out that your eligible for something more permanent then deferred action wouldn't that be great. But if you have someone fill out your forms who is not qualified. They may ruin your chances for a legal status for ever. Talked to a licensed immigration practitioner. Ask questions and report Newt Barrios who are trying to take advantage of view and your family. For more information go to www. Stop no tar heel fraud dot or. A public service message from the American Immigration Lawyers Association. Thank you for joining us on inside us and now today I have a very special guests at her name is Karen reign as. And she's the executive director for mommy Austin. Karen welcome to show thanks so much for inviting me. What does nominee do for the Austin community okay we and it's and I know he said dealing with mental health but I'm. I mean that's that's clarify for our listeners a little bit charity in some context church so not me is actually an acronym for the National Alliance on Mental Illness. So non he started probably via 32 years ago the one here in Austin on the Austin was founded about 32 years ago. And it's primary purpose initially was really to provide education and support for the families and individuals who are most impacted by mental illness. So one of the things that we know is. Mental illnesses can be really challenging. To. To navigate. Kind of that whole system and to also navigate the treatments and I'll let other stuff so in the past and still today we know that a lot of families are oftentimes in isolation and indeed the year often not a whole lot of resources in the community for families when they get a diagnosis listen. So what not only does is we provide these great classes so like we have a twelve week course called Sammy to feeling so family members can go to that class. It's twelve weeks. So every week you're learning something new about treatments about. What kinds of medications are required term from kind of really learning brain biology in Andrew steamy all of the different the full spectrum of different kinds of mental health conditions. And then. The very last she classes are really what I call almost like workshops are I would say it's like we're feeling that you toolkit and so we provide all kinds of great workshops on communication skills on. And making good problem you know been the problem solver when things are happening. The self care all those kinds of things into what we're really aiming to do is a quick Hanley so they can be a whole lot more confident and resilient. As they face any additional crisis that might happen in the future so one of the things that happens as a sidebar to all of the learning that people do in these classes. Is they also get an opportunity to kind of shed all of the shame and blaming guilt that a lot of families walk in the door when it. And the reality is that people don't recover well when their under this kind of dark. Cloud of shame. So it's really great to help them understand that mental illnesses are real medical illnesses now that they require treatment and medication and that recovery is possible. And so that's really important and we always talk about the fact that what we're really doing is providing hope and help so we do a lot of that we have classes for family members. But then we also have classes for individuals who live with a mental health conditions so we also have a ten week course for them. We have a six week course that we offer for families who have early onset of mental health conditions in the family so if you've got to have. Ten year old or thirteen year older high school that's having an early onset of something going on we have a class for you as well. And then we have support groups so we do a lot. Support and education for the families that are an individuals who are most impacted by mental almost so we're there to provide. Education and support for families who were right there on the forefront of these kinds of mental health conditions. And then the other thing that we do is provide all kinds of training and presentations in the community as well. So one of the big places that were do a lot of work in right now is in the schools so we're providing. Education for teens middle school and high school teens as well as school professionals and in the schools. So it's really great as what we're doing is were equipping them with an understanding of what the early signs of mental health conditions can look like as well as suicide awareness so that's really important. Just this spring we did that presentation culled Andy in the silence which is for the teens for 6200 kids jest and this spring while and actually. 94 point seven radio host and was actually very involved with doing the biggest presentation we've ever done of that at Westlake high school we did it for 2600 kids all at one time. And he actually co presented with us on at that presentation. So he's been a big supporter of the work we're doing because he knows as well as we do that the earlier that we intervene McPeak earlier a young person gets a diagnosis the much more likely that they'll have better outcomes in the future. One of the reasons that I'm really passionate about the work that I do is because I have a daughter who is now 24 years old. Bit five years ago I almost lost her to suicide she was eighteen years old. A college student like although. You know the trajectory that now I know lots of families experience in she went on to college she was dealing. Academically really well I mean on the surface she looked like a kid that had it all together. But she was really embarrassed about the depression in the eggs ID that she'd been living with actually for a few years and we just didn't know how serious it was. And and so again we talk about wanting to create community in which we can talk more positively about mental health. Certainly with teens that's one of the places that we know is sort an important. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people ages fifteen to 24 and in fact. And just this spring we had to study they came out from the center for health statistics that show that there had been the largest surge in suicides in the last thirty years and K. So we know that that's just really important issues because in 90% of the cases will we see is suicide there's an underlying. Untreated or undiagnosed mental health condition. So we can catch those things early and make sure that kids don't get to that point and adults as well. We're very likely to save lives just by creating a community in which people feel comfortable saying hey you know what I'm really not doing well. I need some help I need somebody to top tier I might need to see a doctor. On the we still don't live in the kind of communities where we hear isn't comfortable talking about mental health as we talk about. All of our other public health concerns right here. And what's interesting about that is actually the prevalence rates for mental illnesses are one in five. So in any given year one in five Americans will experience a mental health condition. That's 43 point seven million people in the United States so it has a higher prevalence rate and cancer diabetes or asthma. But we're just not as comfortable talking about mental health conditions as we are about physical health conditions. So we're really striving to. You community where we can do that. I ate a completely agree with you. I'm a millennial like I am in my twenties or more a year since then we'll know oh gosh two more months. I thought. I think. A lot of people don't realize how gave our mental illness crisis is in this country. Until they have a handful of friends I go through it. And I noticed it in my mid twenty's with some of my close friends and as is like. Wow where'd this come from like I you would never expect that it always thank you said it ate like on the outside. They seem to be doing well. They have great job sir happy other they're exceeding and in all sorts of levels but then they just have this. Depression or the staying inside just eating them up and and it's it's hard for them to address to people even even as grown adults I think B these so they have some sort of shame that they don't want live without and they just eats away at them day after day. Until it's until. Of really big breaking point for them. Yeah you're absolutely right I mean that's what we know and fifteen million people live with depression another thirteen million anxiety. And so what we know is it's really very calm. But again we don't feel comfortable talking about it week we still carry this. This myth around. That somehow if you develop a mental health condition and that means there's something wrong with you there's something flawed with youth. And so we don't see it for the as the medical illnesses that they are. And so that's a big part of the shame and that you talk about and that's so common for us to hear that. You know and it's funny because we have a tendency deal also say well that person doesn't look like they can have a mental illness. But the reality is that we would never think to say something like that about cancer like how could that person get cancer they don't look like the kind of person that could. So for because we don't see them as illnesses we see them as you know flaws in personality or. Not as a mom I really felt that as kind of like I had failed as a mother that that's the reason my daughter had ended up in crisis. So you we it is so important that we start talking about mental health in the same way we talk about physical health I love what the World Health Organization says. They say that there is no. Health without mental health. And I think we really have to work toward integrating. So that when we talk about health we automatically know that it means both physical and mental. But we do separate those out and and so it's hard because we have to talk about it so we talk very specifically about mental health. But I really longed for and wish for the day when it will we will talk about health and will automatically know that we're talking about both that it's not the sidebar. At salute. Me now if you're just joining us you're listening to incite us and and I'm here with Karen Arenas. And she's executive director for nominee Austin Karen for anyone listening to inside us and at the moment if they want to get more information on nominee. From may be someone that they know that may be mentally ill. Or maybe even to just two is to go in and check out what nominee has to offer is their website as their phone numbers or someone they can you know get in contact with. You bet actually thank you for asking that so we have a great website has all kinds of resources on an and that's non me Austin dot org so that's an AM IA Austin dot or X if you visit the website. We've got a crisis resource page which got I mean just a whole bunch of resources that are available both locally and online. We've also got a suicide prevention com. Wed at tab as well that you can visits we've got to pay to have all kinds of crisis information. And then you can also call the office 5124209810. And then if you email. Info. At none meet Austan dot war. We continue all kinds of resources by email as well we have a plethora of resources and information and that's really the other. This sites providing education and supporting the community I really feel like that's our other purpose in the community is we have really become kind of the goatee. If you have a question about mental helping you don't know where to go where to turn to call us. Did you call 5124209810. Or you email us at info at an army Austin got bored. If we don't know the answer will find it for you. That we've got a list of resources in great information in a person that answers that phone and email who were just an idealist agreed finding resources. Well I hope they're all. As I can do is communicate here with you because I've never felt more comfortable on an interview at all like it like I've done several interviews someone if you're really comfortable and confident right now just speaking with the U. And I and I'm pretty sure that goes from you speaking to people on a daily basis about this. I do have a question it is a nonprofit so families with without insurance or they more than welcome to come in and stuff like that. Well again that's the great thing about everything that we do know cost we don't charge for any thing that we do so whether you call for resources. We have a lending library so if you wanna commend and borrow a book and I was tell people hey if I never seen a book again and totally OK with that. Make sure somebody else gets it who needs it but otherwise people commanded our books we get resource is there in our office as well. Every class you take every support group peace it and if you need is to come out tee you're. Girl Scouts to your. Faith community T your workplace and provide information we are happy to do that and we will not charging a dying to do that. You know one of the things that we know is that particularly when families and individuals. Higher. And navigating really kind of serious mental illnesses and I know that this was two for my own family specially the first year of my daughter's diagnosis. I mean all of your resources are going to treatment and therapy and medication. And so we don't ever want costs to be an obstacle for people I mean we want them to know that there's a place that they can come to an access the help that they need. If they are meeting if they're looking for a counselor we've got a list of sliding scale or no cost counselors that we have that they can have access to. I'm in week instantly connect them with resources in the community if if again if cost is an issue for the multi the best that we can to connect them with the resource in the community that can help them I mean you know one of the things that I know is that a lot of times when we talk about mental illness you know there's. It's kind of one of those topics that people don't feel comfortable talking about and and there is this kind of cloud over at sometimes and so wean bearing intentionally on that day. Make sure that it is a day about celebrating. We talk about the fact that part of what we're doing is celebrating the mental health warriors amongst us none it was really Great Depression took my daughter to the swat as we relieving and then you know she's young she's like 19% in go to the swap elicits a would you think and she said. I loved it. And I said really. And she CC yeah I really dead pool tell me why and she said well here's why she said because. This is the first place that I've ever come this the first time I've ever been someplace where someone like me gets celebrated. She said because anywhere else rank and its cues that person that was with depression during side you know there's this real negative session does that it was a really celebratory day. And Karen before we we end the the interview would do you have any last words you'd like to have. I think only thing that I really want to say is that if you're listening to this. Interviewed. And you've been struggling for awhile and have been reluctant to reach out. Please do I mean call us if you want somebody to talk to will connect you with our programs our support groups. And we've also as I said got some great resources on our website as well and you know I think about my daughter in the sense that you know one of the things that she does now she does in the community telling her story as well. And I think one of the things that she always says as I regret not having said something earlier I wish I had had the courage to say I need to help. So whether you write it down or he tax someone. Com or you call last. Make that first step because the reality is that so many times people don't reach out because they're fearful that they really won't get better that there is something flawed about them. But what we know is again people have the potential and capacity to get better and leave really productive successful lives. I mentioned to you that five years ago almost lost my daughter to suicide back. In the rough first year was a little rough. But just last summer she moved to Portland Oregon she's finishing up for college education at Portland State University. He she's going to be graduating in June with highest honors and more importantly she's happy. And that didn't happen until she reached down and got help and got the help in treatment and medication that she needed to help forget on that road so. And it can happen so don't be afraid to reach out and get help Karen thank you you're welcome thanks for having me. And if you like to reach out to nominee at any time of the year. You can go ahead and emailed comment and vote and not me Austin dot org again that's info. And not me Haas and dot org and don't be afraid you can go ahead and pick up the phone and give my call at 512. Or 209810. Again that's 512. 1409810. And I'm Matt Alvarez and this is inside us and. Yeah. Schering has never meant as much as it does now. Everything is up for the world to seek. But what if this hearing could be used to make a difference. The national MS society is building a place where everyone can share their experiences for. Me if you have a story Sharon. If you have a solution. Here that killed. Because together we're stronger. Join us that we are stronger than and that's got to work. The. Did this agency thickest part of that country's. Probably tell it to Jeanne the individuals lot more times in one day in any other state agency. That voicing here right there this Texas agriculture commissioner Sid Miller he's out by to speak on certain programs like fresh fruit Fridays and that Texas Department of Agriculture itself which. For the most part has more of an impact on your life in the making. Commissioner Sid Miller welcome to the program Hari today I'm just dandy thank perhaps by friendly don't. Can you let the public know a little bit about yourself may be some background. And what she do. Okay sure well on the Texas commissioner of agriculture. On the twelfth actually we have had that many here in Texas okay. How much eighth generation Foreman rancher. Like my living off the land and Steve and bill Texas where race cattle and horses and informed several crops in. Actually haven't preformed Margaret who are grow treats Obama. For vocational agriculture teacher. School board member. And former member of the Texas legislature. Europe. The Jack of all trades and I've been around what countries do you grow. We know shade trees are native to Texas okay the landscape industry. So a lot of oak and stuff like a lot of oaks and Helms a Mexican from Texas red blood so morning minerals. Is many things you'll grow in central and north Texas we grow and is it like trees that you you plan and then itself for distribution. We we're wholesaler so we sell to contractors okay. They're lore larger trees you know pretty good sized trees yeah that's something you could put in the truck you Carr no perhaps what it says SIPC on a trailer that was a shopping centers as it. Commissioner what got you started in your role what made you passionate about to do what you do today is you do a lot well. You know I was actually I recruited to run for this office buck. Some conservative Republican groups and Tea Party groups of mad go to groups. Some of my former colleagues in the legislature. So I just put my children the grindstone and worked hard and after nine opponents and and I'm 1101000 miles on Mondays who truck come here. Saw about been the commission an effort for 22 months and we've been working real hard it. Reorganizing in reforming that they didn't seem to lean mean efficient. Department is that your main goal for the freer and freer department. What it is you know I want to deliver the taxpayer the best product that I can. My goal is to be the best I coach commissioner Texas is ever had and I don't have any go we on land. Not take his job very seriously you know won't be the agriculture commissioner and only candidate for. Somehow our office yep so we've been similar really good team. We go over a 130 different statutory functions that the legislature. Gives us oversight over. In that we get perform in in oversee. One of them course the largest one is via. Twelve look of nutritional programs we were on the largest one being the school lunch program. And did you speak about the TVA but text format culture yet we it was it was status in 1907 so it's of relatively young agency. He was it's a statutory. A deceased not in the constitution it was developed. By statute by the legislature. So but we are one of them the power houses we lead the nation in agriculture exports. Cattle and cotton. Rule mode where horses sheep goats and in a lot of other areas so we we are parent house over second only. And I hate being second to California but we're second California. May have something a program also called farm fresh Friday. And the farm fresh initiative correct that's something that and you under my administration. We have you know to meet the federal guidelines in index. We administer that program. The problem well. The federal program that the food that they eat. Require to be served as it's actually healthy opponent but. What I noticed immediately was instead of having a healthy children we had guilty trash cans and would need it yeah. So I did away with all the mandates. You may remember that I. Granted amnesty to cupcakes in that flu return no more mandates would take to Spartan bag culture we're gonna. Allow the local schools and school boards and more importantly. Parents and teachers make those decisions on the local level instead of some bureaucrat in Austin or Washington DC so. We know only uses state we use the care. So. Farm to school is is kind of a mum my pet project. I only get a fresh fruits and vegetables in the locally produced in our schools. Make those meals attractive so our students won't eat them. And we've been very successful with that. You mentioned farm fresh Fridays that's one of my initiatives and we challenge each school it's not mandatory but those it will work with a switch them don't every Friday. To serve at least one or more locally sourced. Fruits vegetables or dairy products or our meets. It's been very very successful we set up by a network source for schools. How linking them to a local farmers and in retribution dairy month. There was nothing like that before yeah child I never remembered anything like that we have we have remembered it's a lot of Friday that's that's about it yes. Well we we actually have a meet a farmer Friday to orally from fresh Friday would bring in. May bring in a dairy farmer with the kids see were there you know milk they're drinking comes from or some other top of former then we have. Exercise program we're doing all month we have a five teams crisscrossed the state it says. Jump with GO it's an exercise nutritional exercise program that we resilient than we think that certainly exercise in fiscal fitness has. Those handing him live with with good nutrition. One of the things it's been really successful is out. We instituted meal appealing universities so in the summer months. We've had five of the east we bring. Nutritionist from the public schools in. All across the state in we have these culinary ships. They give demonstrations how to make school wheels attractive. So kids Walid and it's been very very successful Weaver. Thinking outside the box we have some schools are bringing in food trucks. It's just think that's absolutely great now we have several that men now have a food courts. Where the kids can go win in just eat what they won't assuming as meet the guidelines and it does. You know a pizzeria as a salad bars and deli bar. Traditional lunch line. Then maybe forty different approve drinks in the clue that they can pick from in in the we don't have much food the trash can which would hit bottom of the bail curve in we're seeing more kids starting returned to the lunch room. At those schools that participate with us the biggest thing and they that I'm I'm really proud of for agriculture areas. In the first six months of our program. Local locally about pro Duce went up. 20%. So our schools bought fourteen million dollars more than they had previous six months over locally sourced product and what that means. He is it doesn't and the entities are preserved his or her dad's or chemicals in itself fresh many times it's organic. And just taste better and the kids. Willie. What sounds like giving to the children the option in school and around the school districts to cheese food has been proven successful for you guys. Especially eight you said fresh and to me that just means let. The food is going out a lot quicker so you there's no need for preservatives to keep it long. That's correct that's Craig rats and that's that. Farm fresh rowdy coming you know farmers who I mean that's in there is no. Whorehouse there is no process and it's not. It's not cooked in flash frozen and then shipped out on the you know trucked from California or somewhere it's. From the formed to the table in the month cycles so Texas schools are getting Texas vegetables and fruits those that partner in our in our program did we make that a possible form we will expand that pro much and we've only been done in the have record for six months of course we we think will will do more than that thirty to forty million dollars in first Prodi's. Going into our schools we have another program. Bar area food banks. Were. We week we the way out and picked up surplus. Fruits and vegetables that went on to be thrown away very nutritious. They not be undersized or blaming mr. might they didn't quite make the grade or something like that. And we distribute those to area food banks. So last year we distribute 68 million pounds. Of surplus. Fruits and vegetables to our area twenty when they're food banks across the state jeez that's a record now that's sounds amazing. With the success but as a state of agriculture in Texas today. Well you know where oh lead the nation and in in many areas he 215. Billion dollar industry you know it's a it's kind of been the glue that helped us stay together even before we can all guess industry big big. Big part of what we do one in seven jobs in this state is somehow related to agriculture and so it's a very significant. Force in our economy. Right now ankle is gone through a little bit tough time we have the very depressed commodity prices. Last stock prices are depressed. But we do have bumper crops so that that helps offset the so. We're probably due to follow off of that 115 billion dollars not be able to sustain that for the for the next twelve months you were just at the safer. We operate the food and fiber pavilion or farming the food and Barbara from the announce known as the go Texan pavilion it's a 25000 square foot. A building there will we showcase our bill Texan members Mets are a path economic development marketing pro arm of the of the Texas department I'd coach to win over a hundred exhibitors they're selling their. Goods and a pioneer brands general store. Southwest their farmers were there we had a free screaming yogurt we gave in and we had nutritional exhibit for the keynote where we gave way. Three apples so we kind of balance the deep fried twinkies with about what's at you know. Volume about balanced that there and it it was very successful most successful state fair we've ever had. I'm always on a deep fried twinkie but have never wanted to and all of my helmet and that's how can always have like split it up a tier three people then you dvd into settings that you. You're agencies just got a big. Federal. You got a big check from the federal government to increase Texas exports can tell me a little bit more about that. That's a step grant and what we will use that to play. Part of the expenses for a Texas business is not just agriculture business that any tap the Texas business do trade shows. We do we'll go to to Africa in in Europe in a go across the globe. You know I've been in office 22 months and now my first twelve months we will. Takes part mag coach who was marking tech is on all every cut it on the globe we sit and Warrick. And that we've been very very successful at it that has not been the case in the past but it is a you know what what top priorities is is our. Economic development for our state so this step program will allow us to. Be first and expensive for some of these small to medium sized companies to get in the in the foothold in the in in the foreign markets where it beat. Canada Mexico South America. Or even Europe or Asia. So we're very excited that we've are being doing that. With this award will allow us to do even more. Now you tell meal earlier that a September and October relieve like. Texas agriculture month but give from which you said if I felt like this is something like every month could be culture month but how important is it. Well you know follows harvest in and that's you know that's when their. That's payday for a farmer rancher you know he's just when you we knew Kansas and marketed when you bring in that the cotton or the peanuts are there carnal this argument saw. So it's you know it's a traditional and we have you know harvest festivals all across the state they were celebrating meant. So it is very important time of year. And enact agriculture in the fall that is is a very special time. When everything that that we talked about today do you have anything else to look like to have maybe about what you do or why you do what you do. Well thank the least. I don't know that people understand exactly what to takes part mag culture does say everybody thinks we're just. You know cows and blouse but we're. Will weigh more than men quote who talked met nutritional programs were responsible for feeding. Five million school meals each day so we think that's important we're also the consumer protection agency for the state. So for instance when you put up the gas pump in a seat. That we've been there making sure that when you within gallons and you get exactly ten dollars worth coming in dollar worth of that pin gallons. We also checked a few quality and octane rating. He'll 400000 fuel pumps that we checked we also do all all the weights and measures that we do all the scales would be to grocery store. Are the feed store or immediate that pawn shop or the yogurt shop for the meat market in Barbeque place are we going to every Starbucks in the state. Ping pong balls we certify the ping pong balls for the lottery. So I mean we get that detailed so we do a lot of consumer protection pesticides. Seeds we have the bank takes zag go to finance authority. We have auditors go in the grain warehouses. We do rule health care for the state 177 counties were in charge of delivering real health care across the state. And infrastructure grants for those same hundreds and seven counties and cities that depend on us to drop down. Those federal dollars and get him out so they can you know enhancer roads and bridges and in broad band and in the infrastructure water and sewer that all comes and takes part of that culture. So we're we're pretty busy actually told the TV we we do a lot of stuff and we've always that's only scratching the surface. It sounds like the TBA com. Gets all the little cracks basically just do you feel in everything and do you discard did you have a much larger impact than people may know within a state that's true that's true we've. You know we we have if we probably did this agency's Texas Department of Agriculture. Probably to a TJ they individuals lot more times in one day. In any other state agency. In absolute lead us our I promise you everything nearly everything you touch we've been there in some form or fashion where it beat. Picking up a gallon organic milk you know we've we've made sure that it doesn't have. Antibiotics or hormones are we pick up carton exit the grocery store we we checked that make sure that you know there okay and they had been inspected. You know even down to you know emergency management when when when we have disasters across the state we've Rick we're very involved in that too. Commissioner millers or anything else did you like them. I could be here all night talk about things apart mag Coetzer but it's it's been a really good interview out. Openly. You listeners have learned a thing to do that the Texas department agriculture. If they ever need to contact me I'm very easy to find it. My name and phone numbers on every gas pump in the state so there you go you can go to take -- go to dot dubs are wimps that America. You know we have updates constantly on the air we have the Hutu radio program today we have a cheat to both commissioner Miller and under the closing market report. Every day about 330 goes out to about a hundred radio stations. There's a lot of good information their recipes in found out about our nutritional program to square meals dot org a marketing program that go Texan not our. Also worries you the final on social media you can time the sun on FaceBook. Picked apart by culture. And still Texan is also on FaceBook so look this up. Boat commissioner Miller thank you for coming in today thank you.