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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel


KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q U A R T E R L Y

INSIDE this edition 4

Healing salves sooth radiation damaged skin

5

Award winner praises the spirit of Starbucks

6

Solon 4H leader mentors generations

7

Farmington artists collaborate on calendar

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Shelter offers hope for homeless women and children

Every three months we will look at everyday challenges that women of all ages face. Our next issue is scheduled to publish in July.

MEET OUR STAFF Advertising Sales Managers Rick DeBruin Kirk Bird Kennebec Journal

Morning Sentinel

Phone: 621-5651 E-mail: rdebruin@centralmaine.com

Phone: 8619156 E-mail: kbird@centralmaine.com

Business Development Manager Bridget Campbell Phone: 861-9155 E-mail: bcampbell@centralmaine.com

Creative/Innovations Manager Denise Vear Phone: 861-9125 E-mail: dvear@centralmaine.com

Special Projects Paginator Debbie Fuller Phone: 861-9202 E-mail: dfuller@centralmaine.com

Advertising Sales Staff Chuck Barnes Pam Boucher Eric Bourgoin Harvey Dinerstein

Randy Dutremble Lori Gervais Barbara Hendsbee

Carla McGuire Ron Robbins Matthew Sargent Dana Sennett

Advertising Graphic Artists Natalie Blake Karen Paradis

Dawn Tantum Denise Vear

Contributors Kimberlee A. Barnett Bonnie N. Davis Wanda Curtis

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

J. P. Devine Kris Ferrazza Nancy P. McGinnis

Valerie Tucker Darla L. Pickett, Content Editor

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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

~ IN PROFILE

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Healing salves may help sooth skin damaged by radiation BY BETTY JESPERSEN Correspondent

FARMINGTON – A local herbalist has found a demand for an all-natural salve she has developed that helps heal skin damage and scarring that is a common side effect of radiation cancer treatments. Julia Staples, owner of The Chickadee’s Nest, an herbal products shop at 161 Front Street in downtown Farmington, said anecdotal feedback from customers who use her new Burn Balm and her best-selling Herbal Healing Salve indicate that the products work. “I think there is a real need out there for something like this. There seems to be a hole in what is available,” she said. The ointment generally recommended at cancer centers for use during radiation treatments is pure aloe vera gel. Staples’ Burn Balm contains tamanu oil, a topical healing ointment from the tamanu tree that grows in Southeast Asia and Melanesia and has been used for centuries to treat skin ailments and burns. It also contains calendula, aloe butter, St. John’s Wart, vitamin E, comfrey, Maine beeswax, jojoba oil, olive oil, and essential oils. The Healing Herbal Salve is an all-around skin ointment made from calendula, comfrey, St. John’s Wart, beeswax, olive oil, tea tree oil, lemon balm, lavender, eucalyptus, rosemary extract and vitamin E. Staples developed her Burn Balm specifically for her sister, Karen Ladd, who underwent six weeks of daily radiation treatments for breast cancer this past fall. “When I realized my sister was going to have radiation, I really wanted to make her something special,” Staples said. “She used it from day-one of her treatments and even the nurses noticed how well her skin healed. “There are so many stories I hear from customers. I had a man in his 70s come in who was undergoing radiation for prostate cancer. A woman purchased a jar for her niece who had recurrent cancer and whose skin was damaged from the radiation,” Staples said. People who have used her Herbal Healing Salve have similar success stories, she said. The ointment not only helps heal the side effects of radiation, but may also speed up healing of any skin injury, from cuts and bed sores to diaper rashes, bug bites, cracked skin, and even hemorrhoids. Staples did her research on making a salve specifically for burns. She has also attended conferences where nationally-known herbalists have discussed the healing power of plants from around the world. “I read everything I could find about herbs and other natural products that are good for burns. The recipe I use is pretty basic but has a few tweaks,” she said. Ladd said she applied her sister’s Burn Balm right after her daily radiation treatments and again before her she went to bed. “I did burn a little under my arm because I hadn’t put the balm on that area. I didn’t realize the radiation was hitting there and it got ahead of me. The skin turned red and started peeling, like sunburn,” Ladd said. “As soon as I realized what was happening, I put the balm on and in

Photos by Betty Jespersen

The Burn Balm Staples developed, uses all natural ingredients and is believed to help skin heal, especially from radiation treatments for cancer.

Julia Staples, owner of The Chicadee's Nest on Front Street in Farmington holds one of her best-selling products she produces at her store, Herbal Healing Salve.

two days, the skin had healed.” When Ladd went in for a post-treatment checkup in December, she said the staff was amazed at the healing and lack of scarring. Meredith Kendall, a registered nurse with a master’s degree in nursing, said people who get radiation therapy for cancer treatment need to take special care of their skin. “They are prone to burns or open wounds in the radiation field. Oils, balms, salves, and medicinal herbs can help protect skin,” she said. Kendall, a Farmington native who is now an instructor at Central Maine Community College’s College of Nursing and Health Professions, is a Reiki Master and is the Reiki coordinator at the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope and Healing at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston.

Reiki is an oriental medicine technique that offers benefits to oncology patients by helping them relax and by increasing their sense of well being while decreasing their discomfort. Kendall is also the author of the book, “Reiki Nurse.” “Julia crafts her products with skill and loving care,” Kendall said. “She uses natural, healthy ingredients. Her soaps, lotions, and salves smell lovely and they have smooth, creamy textures and can help maintain the integrity and function of skin, our largest organ.” According to the website for the National Institutes of Health, calendula, a plant from which the flower is used to make medicines, can help new tissue grow in wounds. The product appears safe for most people when applied to the skin, but may cause an allergic reaction in those sensitive to ragweed and related plants. Staples said the two skin salves are among her best selling products along with the Rose Facial Cream, which is made with an infusion of petals from a fragrant damask rose that has been grown by her family for three generations. The cream is especially good for mature skin, she said. She also makes 20 varieties of herbal soaps, natural bath products, baby lotions and balms, herbal gifts, dried flowers and wreaths, herb teas and culinary items. For information, call The Chickadee's Nest at 778-6602 or to contact Staples by email, write to nest@beelineonline.net.


KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

~ IN PROFILE

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Award winner praises the spirit of Starbucks BY J.P. DEVINE Correspondent

Slipping and sliding, crawling and crunching through the biggest April Fool’s Day 2011 snow storm on record, Samantha LeFebvre of Waterville finally made it into the ballroom of Boston’s Omni Hotel. The room was packed with most of New England’s 600 Starbuck managers, associates (they call them partners) friends and family. It was to be a big evening for the “Starbuckians” of New England. They were there to meet chief executive officer and author Howard Schultz, who was in town as part of his “World Tour” and Starbucks’ Transformation and to deliver his message: “To touch as many customers worldwide as possible.” “Sam” snuggled in with her friends and fellow partners, not just to have an evening of bonhomie, but hopefully to get in line to meet the “big boss” and shake his hand. Starbucks is not just her job as manager, but her passion. What her friends and even her husband, Richie, didn’t reveal to her was a secret they had kept for weeks. It all exploded like a fireworks display when the lights came up and her name was called. Samantha LeFebvre went up on stage, not just to shake the hand of her boss, but to accept a special presentation, the “Spirit of Starbucks Award.” Of all the people there, all 600, Sam – representing Waterville, Maine’s Starbucks, was the only winner of that special honor. Lefebvre came to this moment because District Manager Sarah Goodhue, with the approval of Regional New England Vice President Zeta Smith, put the nomination into play. We waited in a long line to ask Lefebvre exactly what this award was all about. “I’m so proud of this,” she told us. “ It’s a special award to a partner who goes above and beyond to support Starbucks’ mission statement.” We asked Lefebvre to read it to us. It read: “ For her force of positive action in bringing together our partners, customers

Photo by JP Devine

Samantha Lefebvre the manager of Starbucks in Waterville received the Spirit Award from the company in early April of this year. She was the only manager out of 600 in New England to receive such an honor.

and the community everyday. Samantha takes her responsibility to be a good neighbor seriously by partnering with her partners and customers in 20 different community events through the year. The hundreds of hours Samantha and the partners from our Waterville, Maine store donate each year are from the heart.” So how did it all come to this? How did Samantha LeFebvre come to Starbucks in the first place? There must have been a good many places a young Maine woman with a college degree, lightning stroke- sunshine smile and ebullient personality could have landed. “I was watching Oprah one day and Howard Shultz was on and he gave his incredible description of Starbucks and its mission. I must admit what really won me over was the description of the advantages and benefits the company offers,” she said. With husband Richie, employed by Oak Grove Nursing Care Center in Waterville, and two small children, Jameson, 3, and Ava, 2, that was a deal maker. So what are all these things that Starbucks brings to the community? “There are all sorts of things, opportunities that pop up, but the principal things we’ve worked on are Cup of Hope, a local cancer support group; Mainely Mom’s and Dads, that’s a support group for young parents, and Relay For Life, a cancer support walk out of Thomas College,” she said. Lefebvre also mentioned the many food drives Starbucks gives to, including the pastry donations to local food banks. She is quick to praise those who brought this special award about. “I can’t stress how much all of this couldn’t happen, the award, the drives, all of it, without the support of my partners here at Waterville Starbucks,” she said. “These are incredible young people to give of their off-time to work with these groups, and to Starbucks and Howard Schultz, for giving all of us the support and tools to make it happen. It’s such a happy thing, and Starbucks is a such a happy place to work.”

Index of Advertisers Augusta Orthodontics..........................................17 Budget Blinds .......................................................10 Central Maine Electrolysis..................................22 Central Maine Endoscopy Center......................19 Central Maine Orthotics and Prosthetics..........16 Crisis & Counseling Centers ..............................20 David Mathieu Auto Body Shop .........................22 Delta Ambulance .................................................12 Electrolysis by Ruth Swanson, C.P.E.................17 Franklin Health - Dermatology ..........................16 Franklin Savings Bank ........................................18 Gallant Funeral Home.........................................20 Hemotology, Oncology,and Internal Medicine....9 Inland Hospital.......................................................2 Inland Women's Health Care .............................22 Kennebec Behavioral Health ..............................13

Kennebec Montessori...........................................11 Maine Eye Care Associates .................................22 Maine Laser Skin Care .......................................21 MaineGeneral Medical Center ...........................24 Morin, Brian J., Orthodontics ............................20 On Top Screen Printing.......................................20 People's Salon & Spa ...........................................14 Redington OB/GYN.............................................13 Roderigue & Associates Eyecare Center ...........21 Sebasticook Valley Health ...................................15 Senator Inn & Spa ...............................................14 Smart Eyecare Center .........................................17 Taconnet Federal Credit Union ..........................12 University of Maine - Augusta ............................23 Waterville Custom Kitchens ...............................11 Waterville Women's Care....................................18

About this section This special advertising supplement was produced by the Kennebec Journal/Morning Sentinel. The cover design was by Denise Vear, Creative/Innovations Manager. If you would like information on running a section about your business or organization, call Business Development Manager Bridget Campbell at (800) 452-4666, Ext. 155.

ON THE COVER: Julia Staples, owner of The Chickadee’s Nest at161 Front Street in Farmington, has developed two all-natural healing skin ointments — Burn Balm and Herbal Healing Salve — that can help heal skin irritated and damaged by cancer radiation treatments. — Photo by Betty Jespersen


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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

~ IN PROFILE

Morning Sentinel

Solon 4H Leader has mentored generations BY VALERIE TUCKER Correspondent

SOLON — One 4H club leader exemplifies the conscientious effort required to properly care for all animals, and has modeled her personal standard of agricultural excellence in her everyday life, say those who know her work. Now in her 52nd year as a 4H volunteer leader, Eleanor Pooler of Solon, first became a member of Franklin County’s Tough Nuts 4H Club at age 10; she joined the Franklin County Dairy Club at age 13. “In 1947, I was 9-years-old, and I was the youngest person to show steers at the Farmington Fair,” Pooler said, as she prepared her two pairs of working steers for show at the Franklin County 2010 agricultural exposition. Her parents, Sylvia and Irving Holbrook, taught her to raise and show her own farm animals at local fairs. In her late teens, she continued as a club leader, and she is one of the best around, according to Debra Kantor, of the University of Maine’s Somerset County Cooperative Extension office. “This is her 45th year as the 4H leader of the Solon Pine Tree Club,” Kantor said.

Contributed photo

Eleanor Pooler, 73, prepares Lion and Tiger, her 9-month-old working steers, for a show at the 2010 Farmington Fair. After 52 years as a 4H club leader, she models a high standard of excellence for youngsters in her Solon Pine Tree Dairy Club, demonstrating that good work habits and a good education will serve them well throughout their lives.

Pooler’s current group of young people has shown crafts, produce and animal projects at local fairs in Athens and North New Portland, and at the larger fairs in Skowhegan and Bangor. Her club is the oldest in Somerset County, Kantor said, and her group often receives the Outstanding 4H Club Award at the annual Achievement Night banquet. Along with raising farm animals, Pooler’s youngsters can learn crafts, computer skills, or other challenging topics of interest. Everyone shares what they have learned, Pooler said, and they get away from farm work for other adventures. “We took the kids river rafting with Moxie Outdoors and we’ve been roller skating, and other fun stuff,” she said. “I want them to have fun while they learn something, too.” Pooler and her husband Rance, a 4H volunteer for 42 years, offer solid leadership training, great demonstration skills, and so much pride in their accomplishments, according to Kantor. Many of Pooler’s 4H members have contributed to their own communities and several have continued to serve in 4H, she added. “She has taught children and their children, and now their grandchildren, in the

same club,” Kantor said. Pooler helps with fundraising for the Somerset County 4H Leader’s Association. Her pies are prized items at the Association’s annual auction. She also represents 4H on the Somerset County Executive Committee and is on the Skowhegan State Fair board. Pooler usually chairs the Fair’s 4H Day parade and organizes the livestock demonstrations, and her steers pull the Grand Marshal’s covered wagon. She and Rance both model community involvement and set a great example for the youth of their club, Kantor said. “ In 2009, she received an Exemplary Service Award in the Volunteer of the Year category from then-Governor John Baldacci,” Kantor said. The group meets monthly at the Solon Fire Station, sweeping the room in exchange for use of the facilities. “We start with a business meeting, and the kids have to keep good records of their projects and give demonstrations in front of the other kids to build their confidence,” Pooler said. Club members are required to complete community service projects, including host-

More on 4H, Page 7

Young girl's care packages bring joy, hope to cancer patients BY KRIS FERRAZZA Correspondent

ALFRED – Like many 12-year-olds, Sydney Pepin enjoys playing after-school sports, working on the school yearbook and being a Girl Scout. But the project nearest to her heart does not bring certificates, trophies or merit badges. For nearly a year, Sydney has been collecting donated items for care packages, which she assembles and delivers to area hospitals for new cancer patients. Her mission is to remind patients on that often-frightening first day of cancer treatments that they are not alone. “My mom had cancer five years ago and the teachers at her school gave her a care package,” Sydney remembered. “It made her very happy and it even had stuff in it for me. I know how it made me feel.” At that time, Sydney remembers receiving small gifts such as coloring books and snacks and being touched that people were thinking of her family. Her mother, Susan Pepin, underwent chemotherapy for breast cancer and today is cancer-free, but she remembers all too well the feeling of that first day. An elementary school teacher at the Margaret Chase School in Sanford for more than 20 years, she was touched when co-workers presented her with a gift to show they were thinking of her during that difficult time. “You need to keep your spirits up,” Pepin said, “chemo is not fun.” Friends and family often are not sure what to do, but she said any little token or acknowledgement means so much. “Your life goes on, so for them to even think of doing that, you appreciate it,” she said, adding that people battling cancer need the support of loved ones. “They’re not dead, they’re just going through a difficult

Staff photo by Denise Vear

Sydney Pepin of Sanford creates care packages for new cancer patients from donated items.

time,” she said. After Susan Pepin recovered, Sydney learned that an aunt and uncle had been diagnosed with cancer and decided to take action. She drafted a letter to area businesses soliciting donations of items for care packages and started to collect inexpensive items such as snacks, drinks, tissues, cough drops, lotion, note cards and sudoku puzzles. She assembled the packages, including filled decorative gift bags, and

dropped them off by the dozen at the Cancer Care Center in Sanford. Area businesses and residents have been supportive, especially Famous Pizza, which donates juices, and Renaissance Rising, which supplies note cards, she said. Each gift bag includes a note from Sydney that says the package was made especially for the patient with donated items to remind them “someone is thinking of you as you begin your journey.” The Pepin family has received thank-you notes from recipients expressing their appreciation for the care package they received. Some of the notes bring tears to Susan Pepin’s eyes, she said. “They’re just so thankful.” One patient thanked Sydney for the rainbow chameleon Beanie Baby she received in her gift bag, saying the toy has become her companion and will accompany her to all of her appointments. Individuals have donated items too, with some giving handmade lap afghans or hand-knit hats and mittens, including the Class of 1958 from Sanford High School and St.Ignatius High School, which has been a big booster. Others include Susan Pepin’s mother, Sydney’s grandmother, who surrendered her large collection of Beanie Babies to the cause and regularly searches store clearance bins to purchase suitable items. Pepin said her husband, Ronald, also has been a wonderful source of support. “There is a ripple effect, and you want people to know what it’s doing for Sydney too,” her mother said, noting the project has boosted her daughter’s independence, confidence and self-esteem. “It’s good for her to have something like this, and it feels better each time she does it,” Pepin said. In October, the family received a surprise when they More on CARE PACKAGES, Page 7


KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

~ IN PROFILE

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Farmington artists collaborate on calendar project Combining fabric art and calligraphy BY BETTY JESPERSEN Correspondent

The creative talents of two Farmington artists united last year to collaborate on a 2011 calendar that was so successful, 150 copies quickly sold out even though they didn’t hit the market until after the new year began. Fabric artist Mary McFarland and calligrapher Mike Monahan were as surprised as anyone with the tremendous response to their joint venture; they are working on another calendar for 2012. “I think this was just spectacular for not starting to sell them until January. And we could have sold more — the demand was there,” McFarland said. Next year’s calendar will have better-quality, digitized prints and will be available for sale before the holiday shopping season kicks off. They will be sold in area galleries, shops and quilt shows — and this time, 500 will be printed. “Mike and I have known each other for years. He is so creative and I was thrilled he agreed to collaborate on this. I wanted a professional, clean job and this was a perfect combination,” she said. Monahan said the project was fun and he was impressed with its unexpected success. “If you can sell a calendar in January, you're doing pretty good,” he said. Also known as The Sufi Scribe, Monahan’s ornamental calligraphy renderings of poems, prayers, songs and spiritual texts promoting peace and harmony are sold in area galleries and at his custom sign and banner business, Signworks (www.mainesignworks.com), at 168 Farmington Falls Road in Farmington. McFarland's well-known fabric art often sports naturebased themes. Through a variety of techniques, she prints on silks, sheers, linens and cottons —many of which she dyes herself — and makes use of watercolors. She also makes sun prints by putting dampened, dyed fabric or paper in the sun where the rays imprint the outlines of grasses, leaves, intricate doilies or paper cutouts on the material as it dries. The designs are then embellished with quilting, appliqué and thread work to create one-of-a-kind, richly-colored collages, wall art and creative window solutions. The calendar project involves using a theme for every

Care Packages Continued from Page 6

attended the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus in Portland and learned Sydney had won a Barnum Award for community service, which included a $750 cash prize. She had been nominated by Limerick Librarian Cindy Smith. That money is put away for future care package purchases if the need arises, Pepin said. A 7th at Massabesic Middle School, Sydney’s

Photo by Betty Jespersen

Farmington fabric artist, Mary McFarland, displays one of the pieces she has created for a calendar project she is producing with local calligrapher and sign maker, Mike Monahan, of Signworks. The piece she is holding will be the art for the month of March in the 2012 calendar.

month, which is inspired by the colors of the seasons, a festival, or animals, birds or leaves. On each month, Monahan used a different calligraphy style to pen in the days and illustrate a word, quote or phrase that McFarland wrote and selected for an uplifting, timely or wise message, such as, “Act with integrity, sleep in peace.” She chose the word “change” for March; “laugh often” for May; and “light” for January when the days are slowly beginning to lengthen. For the 2012 calendar, McFarland will be incorporating her latest fabric art interest that she calls Sheer Delights. For these pieces, she reuses old and antique, hand-tatted cloth doilies that she resews, dyes with subtle tints and stitches on to sheer fabrics to make whimsical wall or window hangings.

favorite subject is language arts. She enjoys participating in the school’s intramural program, playing afterschool sports such as soccer and handball, and loves to look after the family’s black Labrador, C.C. Sydney said she has no plans to stop making the care packages, which she assembles by herself and delivers anytime the cancer center calls to say it is running low. “I want to continue to do this for as long as I can,” Sydney said. “It just makes me feel really good that I know I’m doing something to help.” For more information about this effort or to donate items, email the Pepins at spepin81@yahoo.com.

Her works have been shown at galleries and art shows, and a three-piece fabric mural she created adorns the chapel at Franklin Memorial Hospital. She also makes custom clothing, does commission work and teaches. “I’ve had a calendar in mind for about five years and I was so excited that Mike agreed to collaborate with me on it,” she said. The project didn’t become a reality until she took Monahan’s calligraphy class last year through the Franklin County Adult Education and asked him to work on it. She said he jumped at the invitation. “Mike has been making Monahan family calendars with his children for over 20 years and he really liked the idea,” she said. McFarland enthusiastically completed the artwork for six of the months but she admits, by summer, she slowed down. “I think I had artist’s block,” she said with a smile. In December, she finished the remaining months, but the project still had to be printed at Monahan’s shop and assembled. It wasn’t completed until the end of the month. Relying on word of mouth, sales were sluggish at first. But then unexpected publicity came from their mutual friend, Nina Gianquinto, owner of Up Front and Pleasant Gourmet on Front Street. Gianquinto called local artist, Janet Washburn, who manages the Washburn & Johnson Gallery next door at 155 Front Street, and she scheduled an open house for late January with Gianquinto providing the catering. Invitations went out and people came, McFarland said. The artists were amazed when the 12 original works representing each month, mounted and on display, were all sold. The calendars, priced at about $15, were also grabbed up. Monahan has studied the art of calligraphy for years, attending classes with well-known artists and teaching himself how to use specialized brushes and inks in an art form that has Chinese, Japanese, and Arabic origins. His handsome lettering and designs are his trademark and can be seen on many commercial signs, in business logos and on vehicles around the region. He also uses his flowing brush work to embellish invitations, certificates and announcements. To order a calendar, call McFarland at 779-1957 or Monahan at 778-3822.

4H

Continued from Page 6

ing a family supper, picking vegetables for the local food bank and honoring their mothers in May. Pooler also organizes fun, active events such as ice fishing and roller skating, Kantor said. She continues to nurture those youngsters as they mature and she has four or five assistant leaders helping her at meetings. “Eleanor has developed a wonderful and unique relationship with her assistant leaders and the youth of the town of Solon,” Kantor said. As with any club, the variety of ages and interests encourages peer-to-peer relationships and young people are taught to work as team members, developing responsible behavior patterns, she said.


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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

- F E AT U R E

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Bonnie Davis photos

The upstairs dormitory offers a quiet place for mothers to relax with their children.

Brenda Roberts loves having a safe, nurturing home for little Isabelle.

Shelter offers new hope for homeless women BY BONNIE N. DAVIS Correspondent

during inclement weather. For these women, whether homeless with children or part of the state’s correction program, New Hope When Brenda Roberts lost her home durbecomes home rather than a crash pad for the ing the cold harsh winter, she and her baby night. Hot meals, AA meetings, Bible study had no place to go. Government-funded area and classes are among the services provided. shelters force clients out on the street for 12 “I’m a big believer in education,” Weeks hours each day. said, “and not forgetting the people left “I was living in Lewiston when I became behind.” homeless, with Isabelle,” Roberts said. “I Linda Weeks works by her husband’s side, checked a few shelters, but I wouldn’t want helping the women adjust, teaching Bible my daughter to see them, much less stay in classes and organizing educational opportunione, and you have to leave at 6 a.m. and ties. come (back) at 6 p.m. What do you do for the “Upper Kennebec Valley Memorial High day? Then my case worker told me about School received a spring planting grant,” she New Hope.” said. “A teacher is coming to teach the New Hope Church Women’s Shelter in women about container gardening. Another Solon is the brainchild of Rev. John Weeks, class is doing spring cleaning. They’ll clean known as Pastor Jack. Together he and his outside, drink coffee and have lunch. It’s a wife, Linda, serve the homeless. way for the community to get together and “There were no shelters in the Skowhegan Bonnie Davis photo help out wherever they’re needed.” area when we started,” he said. “I had 56 “We feed them — everything’s donated,” Rev. John Weeks, aka Pastor Jack, and his wife, Linda bring new hope to homeless people in my own home. I’d find people women and their children. said the pastor. “If we accepted state grants, sleeping in the park with their babies.” we’d have to follow state rules.” Weeks collaborated with Rev. Richard However, clients receive a strict set of Barry of the Trinity Evangelical Free Church Department of Corrections.” started in Scandinavia during the 16th centu- shelter rules and they must sign a contract. in Skowhegan about three years ago to When Weeks saw the growing number of ry to initiate a true separation between church Rules include no drinking, no drugs, no gosaddress the growing number of homeless siping, proper attire and hygiene, helping women and children left homeless by the and state. people. with chores and attending all required serviceconomic downturn, he approached New “You can just go and preach from your “We were partners at the time; we started es and meetings. Staff is on duty 24-hours-aHope Evangelical Free Church with the hope heart,” he said, “and there’s no state or govtogether. The difference is, I’m a street minis- of setting up a safe environment for these day to provide support as well as to dispense ernment funding. It was founded that way ter. I walk around and reach out to the pover- vulnerable citizens. prescriptions and over-the-counter medicaand it stays that way.” ty stricken,” Weeks said. “It started out as a “It’s not just rock bottom, it’s a fresh start,” For more than a hundred women and chil- tions. men’s shelter. We took people out of jail — Weeks said daily Bible classes help clients Weeks said. dren who have passed through the shelter’s we do house arrest and they get two days for Ordained in the Calais area about 30 years doors since it started in January 2010, this one off their sentence. We work with the ago, Weeks said the Evangelical Free Church means they do not have to roam the streats More on SHELTER, Page 9


KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

Shelter

Bonnie Davis photo

Tina Ferrara acts as the shelter hostess by making coffee for visitors and helping new clients settle in.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

- F E AT U R E

Continued from Page 8

see parallels between scripture and modern living. “There’s nothing new — the same stinginess, meanness and problems existed then and today,” Weeks said, with a twinkle in his eye. “I had a heart attack several years ago. After that, I received my calling to go after people who were like me. If I’d known, I would have behaved a little better.” According to Weeks, people live on the streets, in “cardboard castles” and in parks for a variety of reasons, including, but not limited to, lack of a solid family structure, developmental disabilities, mental illness with no support in place, substance abuse and domestic violence. Some are re-entering society after prison and poverty due to underemployment or no employment. Turning 30 on Easter Sunday, Tina Ferrara said she never experienced love until she came to the shelter under house arrest through the Department of Corrections. After battling the legal system for a series of offenses, including taking shots at a police officer with a BB gun, Ferrara spent 20 days in jail before coming to New Hope. “I’ve been sober for four months now,” she said. “I’m not hanging out with the wrong people anymore. Before coming here, I didn’t care if I died.” Linda Weeks said Ferrara is doing well. “Her jail time was reduced from four years to 20 days and that’s a miracle in itself,” the pastor’s wife said “She’s definitely become one of the family. She’s constantly busy — making beds, helping out around here. She’s our hostess.” “Although housing is available in five or six weeks, we’re

thank god everyday for allowing me to find Dr. Traynor. After seven long years of going to the best of hospitals and doctors, I was finally diagnosed at New York Presbyterian Hospital with a Primary Immunodeficiency (PID) called Common Variable Immunodeficiency (CVID). CVID is a rare blood disorder of the immune system. With CVID, I am missing essential parts of my immune system, so I have special treatments of blood plasma called IVIG every two or three weeks for the rest of my life in order to live. My NY specialist said I must find a doctor in Maine that understood my disease and was able to medically treat me properly, as it is always a life threatening illness. I went to the best immunologists, oncologists, and hematologists, and no one understood my disease. They were willing to give me the IVIG, but they didn’t know how to treat this rare disease otherwise. Then I found Dr. Traynor. This is what I refer to her as: My Dr. Traynor. She is truly the only one in the State of Maine that can treat the disease and run the appropriate tests that must be done on a continuing basis. Beyond the fact that she is brilliant, she is compassionate and completely dedicated to the well-being of her patients. When I walk into her office, I am greeted by a radiant smiling nurse, Kahler. You can easily see why Dr. Traynor hired Kahler, as she goes above and beyond in order to make her patients comfortable. I have finally found an extraordinary doctor in Ann Traynor that I know can treat my CVID, has my best interest at hand, and more importantly, as a patient, I finally feel safe. Lynn Lepage-Fitzpatrick, Rumford

I

Accepting new primary care patients and all insurances.

9

going to keep her here — it’s safer,” Pastor Weeks said. “…and I want to pay off my restitution. I have to get counseling and take care of my anger issues,” Ferrara said. When women leave, they have access to donated clothes, furniture and household items for their fresh start. “I’m waiting for housing. I want to be on the outskirts of Auburn/Lewiston. I want to see if I can do some classes in medical billing — something I can do from home so I can be with my daughter. Then I want to go to cosmetology school,” Brenda Roberts said. “This place is a blessing for me,” said a client who must keep her identity and location private. “I have a physical disability and I’m bipolar. I will be able to work again after some body therapy. I am also an addict in recovery — crack cocaine — it took me 15 years and two relapses to get to where I am today. I want to help others. I want them not to give up. You can always have another relapse, recovery is not guaranteed.” For Holly Gordon, the future looks bright after a dark past. “This place is a life changing experience. I’m 18 and actually come from Augusta. My mom is a drug user — she beat me up and threw me out. She pawned everything I owned. I came here weeks ago with the clothes on my back. Now I own a t-shirt and sweats,” she said. “They’ve helped me out with clothes and school. I’ll be graduating in June, getting an apartment in Waterville and taking courses at KVCC or the Academy in Vassalboro, to be a probation or parole officer. I also want to join a volunteer fire department. In Augusta, I had no place to go, no one to turn to.” The shelter has plans for a new 120-foot-long building to accommodate more homeless. For more information or to make a donation, contact New Hope Church Women’s Shelter at 669-4402.

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10

Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

~ F E AT U R E

Morning Sentinel

Summer adventure on Andros Island The promise of a relaxing trip in the Bahamas became anything but A low-lying strip of land hunkered to starboard, and I could hear The Marigold straining. She shuddered in every seam and something low and menacing seemed to be talking underwater.

Peter Garrett photo

Above, The Marigold, a low-slung former U.S. Coast Guard riverboat, once served on the Mississippi River. Right, a map of Andros Island, Bahamas, about 50 miles southeast of Miami, Florida. Andros Island, according to research, “is the largest island of the Bahamas, measuring 2,300 square miles.

Note: Fourth in a series of four. For reasons of privacy, certain names and sequences of events have been changed. In episode #1: hydrogeologist Peter Garrett was teaching sedimentology to scientists and university students on Andros Island in the Bahamas in the 1980s. With wife, Jean Ann, and 2-year-old daughter, Jessica, they traveled from Florida by U.S. Coast Guard riverboat, got stuck due to a witch’s spell on a sand bank that wasn’t there; listened to Noah the captain boast that his granddaddy murdered 14 men; and Jean Ann had an awful dream about geologists being strafed from a Cessna 180. In episode #2: the three Garretts moved from a broken-down trailer swarming with mosquitoes to a cottage on the beach that heaved when a wild pig scratched himself under the floor, had been adopted by two local thieves, were scared out of their wits by stories of chickcharnies, learned that the Tongue of the Ocean was right next door ever sinking; and something called a Blue Hole was even closer than that. In episode 3: Peter, Jean Ann and wee Jessica, who was two, had moved into an 8-by 10-foot ‘palace’ on Andros Island in the Bahamas with a pig living under the floor. They had learned about creatures who jump from trees at night to tear people apart, been adopted by two little thieves (who stole their cameras) investigated Blue Holes where SCUBA diver, Doug, disappeared, and were generally wrecks. At least Jean Ann was.

BY JEAN ANN POLLARD Correspondent Special to Women’s Quarterly

in Nassau and find happiness. My 2-year-old Jessica, hydrogeologist husband and I, however, were camped in a tiny cottage on Andros. After all, he and his colWhile 2-year-old Jessica grinned happily, and the two little thieves returned the cameras league, Charles, were teaching seminars to oil company geologists and university students, and begged to be adopted, Jean Ann waited and the big, flat island lying a few miles west for the Tongue of the Ocean nearby to sudof Nassau was perfect for studying sedidenly produce a volcano. ments. “Don’t be silly,” Peter said. We’d chugged in from Miami on a lowThe Bahama Islands southeast of Florida are considered Paradise on Earth. Americans vie to sail there on cruise ships, spend money More on ANDROS, Page 11

Spring is the perfect time for new blinds!


KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

~ F E AT U R E

Andros Continued from Page 10

Photo by J.A. Pollard

The infamous turquoise cabin on Andros where ‘thee peeg’ scratched his back.

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slung Mississippi riverboat called The Marigold, whose captain, Noah, liked to say that his father was a dud but his grandfather murdered 14 men. Quick with a joke, I commented, “Well I’m glad he was good at something!” and then skedaddled to a mattress on The Marigold’s deck where I stayed awake all night clutching wee Jessica so she wouldn’t crawl overboard into a shark. And that was only the beginning. We docked at Morgan’s Bluff on the northeast tip of Andros named for Sir Henry Morgan. Henry was a 17th century Welsh pirate famous for harassing the Spanish while flying the flag for England. “Isn’t that rather odd?” I quipped. “The Welsh? Fighting FOR the English?” No one thought I was funny. Anyway, Sir Henry stormed around grabbing riches, became deputy governor of Jamaica, was one of the few pirates to ‘die in bed’ and got himself buried in Jamaica’s Palisades Cemetery, which crumbled into the sea after the earthquake of 1692. So much for success. Some of his treasure, though, was rumored to have been buried on the Bluff, and a student spelunker found a cave. There was noth-

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

11

ing of value in it, but after learning about chickcharnies (that supposedly drop out of trees to tear heads off), and Blue Holes (the tips of water-filled tunnels that surface mysteriously in pools all over the Island), as well as Tongue of the Ocean (a trench between Andros and Nassau that’s forever sinking), it seemed to me that something sinister was flavoring the environment. “Don’t be silly,” my husband said. “OK,” I said, “but what about Uncle Charlie’s Blue Hole where Scuba-DiverDoug disappeared? (In episode #3) “Maybe Doug disappeared himself,” he said. “Why would he do that?” “I don’t know. You’re the writer.” The Marigold was headquarters for all courses. Perfect for sliding over the shifting sands of the Bahama Bank, it had a lab aboard for simple chemical analyses, along with microscopes and drilling equipment. Every so often the team chugged down the western coast of Andros, which is laced in the middle by creeks, some of which cut through from east to west. Feral pigs thrived there, mosquitoes were ubiquitous, good fishing abounded and sediment hunting was perfect. “Was it perfect for pirates, too?” I asked. Which seemed like another joke until, floundering around in the mud and mangroves More on ANDROS, Page 12


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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

~ F E AT U R E

HISTORICAL FACT

Andros

The Bahamas have never been totally free of pirates, said a sea captain in Michael Craton’s “A History of the Bahamas.” During the Civil War, they launched high-risk, blockade-running vessels that slipped past federal lines keeping commerce open between Europe and the confederacy. Rum-running was a staple of the islands’ economy during prohibition, Canadian tax dodger Sir Harry Oakes was murdered one night in 1943, and drug runners took over from there. Today, proximity to the United States and its vast drug market, is doubtless the principal source of income for many Bahamians.

Continued from Page 11

having a great time, the geologists and students came upon a secret landing strip stacked with bales of marijuana. Bug-eyed, muttering things like “Wow!” and “Whazzat?” they barely made it back to The Marigold as a Cessna buzzed out of the blue, spraying bullets from a machine gun. “Drug runners!” someone screeched. “Bringin’ it up to the U.S. from farther south.” And suddenly summer in paradise was no longer heavenly. Peter put Jessica and me on a plane and sent us home and in a while he followed, though Charles and a few others stayed on. I was disappointed. Summer adventures are supposed to be fun, but a phone call that begins: “Are you sitting down?” spoiled everything forever. Charles and some of the others had rented cabins at a complex close to Morgan’s Bluff. The hotel boasted a dining room and bar, as well as a swimming pool where people with skins in all shades from coal-black to snowwhite lay around like sharks. Jessica and I knew all about it. We’d wandered through one day to look around. She had pulled off her sunbonnet and leaned too

Morning Sentinel

Peter Garrett photo

Not far from Morgan’s Bluff was the settlement of Red Bay where Peter did long-ago research for his Ph.D. When we visited with 2-year-old Jessica, many friends remembered him.

far out of her stroller, so I’d put her bonnet on again explaining about tropical sunshine and broken bones (for the 100th time) while she giggled. Men at the bar looked up, she waved, and we strolled on past. Beside the pool, a handsome black man with orange-colored hair was nuzzling a handsome white woman with orange-colored hair. “What’s he doing?” I asked someone.

“Teaching her to scuba,” was the reply. There seemed to be a flock of very large German girls pretending to ignore some very tall Bahamian men pretending to ignore — the air was electric. At any rate, after the strafing, it seemed important to be very, very wary. With Peter and me and most of the others gone, Charles was sleeping in Noah’s cabin because Noah asked to switch, but during the night some-

one entered and… well… hell took over. Charles was killed. We’ve never really recovered. And even though the sand is white and the sea, turquoise, and Blue Holes are wonderfully mysterious and the Tongue of the Ocean keeps peacefully sinking, I’ve never been back. Instead, I have nightmares of whitecaps rolling onto white sand beaches, palmettos thrashing, mangroves creeping along the shore and a Cessna swooping over a secret landing strip in the middle of the island and the sound of bullets spattering mud. Not every trip to paradise ends happily.

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KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

~ H E A LT H

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

13

MaineGeneral’s nonsurgical treatment for fibroids gives women a new option BENTON — Virginia Lee lived with the pain of uterine fibroids for more than a year before her symptoms finally became unbearable. Part of the problem, she said, was that she thought the pain was related to two previous tubal pregnancies — including one that ruptured in 2007. Only when her primary care provider ordered an ultrasound and MRI in 2009 did she realize the cause and extent of her problem — five fibroids of varying size, the largest the size of a tennis ball. “The fibroids were pushing on my bladder and bowels to the point where I couldn’t go to the bathroom,” said Lee, 42, of Benton. “I couldn’t lift anything, sleep on my side or even keep my jeans buttoned because it hurt so much.” Lee was presented with two treatment options: a full hysterectomy, which would remove the fibroids but also her uterus and ovaries, or a procedure known as uterine fibroid embolization (UFE). After consulting with Dr. Zaki Nashed, she opted for the latter in Aug. 2009 because it was a less-invasive option with a much shorter and easier recovery time. Dr. Henk Jordaan, a fellowship-trained interventional radiologist at MaineGeneral

MaineGeneral photo

Benton resident Virginia Lee has returned to gardening, walking her dog and enjoying other activities — pain free — after a nonsurgical uterine fibroid embolization (UFE) procedure in August 2009 alleviated the pain and discomfort she felt because of several large uterine fibroids.

Medical Center’s Thayer Campus, performs the procedure along with colleagues Dr. Dan Raque and Nashed. Jordaan said the procedure works by cutting off the blood supply to fibroids, causing them to shrink over time. “It’s minimally invasive, highly effective

and saves many women from having a hysterectomy, which is a large surgical procedure,” he said. Jeff Trask, special procedure coordinator for MGMC Imaging Services in Waterville, emphasized that the focus of the UFE procedure is not to remove the tumors. “It stops blood flow to them which causes them to shrink,” he said. Fibroids are common, noncancerous growths on the uterine wall. It is estimated that more than five million women in the United States have fibroids that cause symptoms such as bleeding, abdominal or back pain, anemia, urinary and digestive problems, as well as infertility or miscarriage. At MaineGeneral, UFE is done as a oneday procedure under sedation, usually with an epidural provided by an anesthesiologist. The radiologist makes a small puncture in the patients groin area, and inserts a catheter and guide wire into the artery to release tiny particles into the fibroids to block blood supply to them. Jordaan said the procedure takes about an hour to complete and the patient is admitted for one night and discharged the next morning. Recovery usually takes two to three days and most patients can return to work a week later.

He noted that a patient’s fibroids continually shrink over several months, but said most patients have significant symptom improvement within weeks. He added that UFE is a particularly effective option for patients because it: • Controls symptoms as well as surgery. • Allows patients to keep their uterus and ovaries. • Doesn’t require a long hospital stay or recovery. Equally important for patients, he added, is that it is a less-expensive treatment option. “We think this is a great procedure, and feedback we’ve received from our patients indicates they do too,” Jordaan said. Lee can attest to the effectiveness of the procedure, saying her quality of life now “is like night and day” from what it was before. “I wasn’t ready to have a hysterectomy at that point in my life and this procedure was able to completely eliminate my symptoms,” she said. “Dr. Nashed and his nurse Joyce Vigue-Morrissette were wonderful and (UFE) has really made a difference in my life.” A patient interested in the procedure must have a referral from her primary care provider or OB/GYN. Prospective patients or providers who would like additional information about the procedure can call 861-6700.


14

Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

~ B O O K TA L K

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

“Well Out to Sea” relates humorous tales of island living “Ever dreamed of becoming a electrician, pretty much is the island’s BOOK TALK teacher in a one-room island power company. school? Don’t,” advises Eva For nearly a decade now, Eva by Nancy P. McGinnis Murray, author of “Well Out to Murray’s columns — one aptly named Sea.” “From the Edge”— have appeared reguAnd no one in her right mind who lives on a tiny, larly in a number of local publications. “Well Out to close knit, isolated island would be foolish enough to Sea” is a compilation of these columns — so you see, write a book about it and its inhabitants, Murray added. she didn’t write a book, it just turned into one. Be foreBut Murray has now done both. In 1987, the Bates warned: once you open the cover, you’ll have trouble College graduate answered a classified ad in the Bangor putting it down. Daily News that read simply: “Teacher wanted for one Why did Murray choose to venture to Matinicus, an room school.” She claims that’s the third most common isolated island 22 miles out to sea, with scarcely a hunreason folks come to the island, after vacationers and dred neighbors? And once here, why did she forgo a those who take up lobstering. chance at graduate school and choose to stay? Murray landed the one-year position, teaching 1st Incidentally, Murray is the first to admit she is not an through 8th graders in one room, apparently by virtue of islander, despite having spent the past quarter century her former stint working in a lumberyard and her sense here. of humor. By the time summer vacation arrived, Murray While others have their own reasons, Murray says it’s was hooked. simple — she prefers to live without lots of rules. In her In her own words, you’ll know you want to stay when book, Murray conveys the absurdity of heavy-handed you realize “You love it, absolutely love it here, 51 per- regulations that are rendered laughable in the face of cent of the time.” She met and eventually married an insurmountable logistical realities. On the island, comislander, raised two children, and wouldn’t think of livmon sense and cooperation are the rule. The humans ing anywhere else. Though she has relinquished her need to support each other because as a group they are lobstering license, Eva Murray remains busy, not only as at the mercy of the vicissitudes and vagaries of nature a wife and mother, but also a wilderness EMT (emer— including the weather. On Matinicus, lobstering is not gency medical technician), proprietor of a small season- just an occupation, “it is the local economy,” she writes. al bakery, and former or current holder of several municNancy McGinnis photo ipal posts including hard-won title of ‘garbage czar’ "Well Out to Sea", a collection of essays by Eva Murray, was published last year by Tilbury House Publishers. (head of the recycling committee). Her husband Paul, an More on BOOK TALK, Page 15

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KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Book Talk

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

~ B O O K TA L K

Continued from Page 14

“The lobster fishery supports the school, the power company, the post office. “The economic future is not guaranteed.” Murray’s own principles to live by are succinct and to the point: • First, do no harm. • Leave no trace. • Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor. • If you don’t live here, you can’t fish here. And it’s an unspoken rule that islanders, despite their occasional differences and petty squabbles, will rush to the aid of anyone in trouble, particularly on the water. You never hear anyone say “it’s not my job,” she notes. Matinicus, a community she says is “steeped in tradition unhindered by progress,” is an interesting study in contrasts. Residents have high-speed internet, but they also know it’s good to have an old-fashioned, hardwired land phone (cell phones are useless) for when the power goes out, as it inevitably does. There is no mall and no downtown, but you can borrow a cup of sugar from a neighbor and don’t bother to lock your door when you go out. Since commuting is downright impractical, you’ll save on that expensive daily latte routine, though “the price of heating oil might prompt a small heart attack,” she writes. Because of the weather’s relentless sabotage of even

Paul Murray photo

Author Eva Murray takes a break from spring yard chores at her Matinicus home.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

15

the best-laid plans, extended family members might miss the intended Thanksgiving gathering, and there’s no guarantee of poultry on the table — but an abundance of apple pie. Murray is grateful nonetheless for her children, who are self sufficient, and for her friends and neighbors who manage to remain both practical and positive in the face of adversity. As author and protagonist, Murray's persona resembles in part EB White, in part Erma Bombeck. Murray's writings are reminiscent of White's classics in her articulate, bemused observations (and sometimes exasperation) regarding summer folks, or the authorities. Like Bombeck, she can be funny, reflecting on everyday adventures of motherhood, but also tender and poignant in the face of loss. In reality, Murray is simply true to her own feisty self, a wry, ever resourceful, discreet observer and gritty chronicler of life as she has come to know it on Matinicus Island. She is always ready to roll up her sleeves and engage, whether it’s making old-fashioned spice donuts (heirloom recipe included) or assisting with a rescue at sea. Survival here also requires, as she aptly puts it, a “tolerance for stuckitude,” the art of doing without or making do. There are only the fishing boats, ferries and air service, the latter serving as “the cross-town bus, the taxi, the hearse, the UPS truck, the squad car, and the pizza delivery vehicle,” she writes. Clearly, island life is for doers, not dreamers, and certainly not for the faint of heart. But reading about it in “Well Out to Sea” will appeal to many. Even the ferry captain says so, and how many book jackets can boast such an endorsement?


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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

~ H E A LT H

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women wowed at World of Women’s Wellness What could bring 500 women together in one location on a Saturday morning? Inland Hospital’s World of Women’s Wellness. The 14th annual event was held April 2 at Thomas College and women of all ages turned out for free health screenings, spa samples, and wellness exhibits from more than 70 local organizations. First time attendee, Nan Bennett of South China, said she enjoyed the positive, no-pressure atmosphere at the event. “A friend of mine who has come in the past brought me and I’m really glad I came. I loved the wellness talk about “Challenging Your Comfort Zone” and all parts of the event. I plan to come again next year.” More than 2,100 free health screenings were performed at the event this year, from blood pressure, to cholesterol testing, to bone density and blood glucose tests for diabetes. “Twenty-eight percent of those who were checked had blood pressure readings that were pre-hypertensive or high — so we are very glad to reach those people directly with information about what to do if your blood pressure isn’t normal,” said Ellen Wells, Inland’s Community Wellness Coordinator. Forty-nine percent of people who were tested for cholesterol levels had results that were bor-

derline or high risk. Inland and EMMC wellness teams and nurses offered coaching to help women reduce their cholesterol levels. “Heart disease is the number one killer of women,” Wells said. “And it’s important for women to know their heart health numbers because they can reduce many risk factors by making lifestyle changes.” A new screening provided this year was for breast exams, provided by Waterville OB/GYN, a practice of Inland Hospital. Fifteen percent of the women screened needed follow-up. Other screenings focused on body mass index, glaucoma, sleep, skin cancer, pulmonary function, vision, balance, and even a “blackberry thumb” joint assessment. More than 300 spa samples were provided to help women learn new ways to relax and included massage, Reiki, facials, reflexology, hair and make-up consultations. “Inland is proud to collaborate with dozens and dozens of local organizations and businesses to make this a valuable, fun, event for the women in our community,” said Sara Dyer, director of community relations. “We want to thank them and all our dedicated volunteers and Inland staff members who are committed to improving community health.”

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Sharon Leighton has her cholesterol level checked by University of New England medical student Alicia Mancuso at the World of Women’s Wellness 2011 at Thomas College in Waterville. The event was sponsored by Inland Hospital.


KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

Morning Sentinel

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

~ H E A LT H

17

Inland Family Care office to open downtown There’s a new neighbor coming to downtown Waterville in May. Inland Family Care, a primary care practice of Inland Hospital, will open on May 16 on The Concourse in the space next to the Dollar Tree. Family Physician Dr. John Bonney, and Family Nurse Practitioner Jennifer Penney, will be the first providers in the new space. Their practice is presently located in the Medical Arts Building attached to Inland Hospital. Inland is currently recruiting for several more health care providers to join the growing practice when it moves to downtown Waterville. “We are proud to improve access to primary care in a convenient location and pleased that we will be contributing to the overall health of our community by being part of a vibrant downtown area,” said John Dalton, Inland president and chief executive officer. Shannon Haines, executive director of Waterville Main Street, said: “We are tremendously excited about Inland’s decision to invest in downtown Waterville and we strongly believe that the facility will positively impact the downtown district through both job creation and increased foot traffic.” The new downtown practice — Inland Family Care — is part of Inland’s efforts to help improve access to health care in the area. Last year, Inland opened two walk-in care clinics at Walmart in Waterville and Augusta. For more information about Inland Family Care please call 873-1036.

Contributed photo

Jennifer Penney, Nurse Practitioner, along with Family Physician Dr. John Bonney, are the first providers in the new Inland Family Care office in downtown.

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18

Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY

KENNEBEC JOURNAL •

~ FOOD

Morning Sentinel

The art of inspired eating: Invite fruits and veggies back to the table BY NANCY P. MCGINNIS Correspondent

For most of people, garden fresh produce can’t get here fast enough. As if the relentless snowstorms weren’t enough to contend with, being surrounded by the grays and browns of mud season — otherwise known as “spring” — can be daunting to the body, mind and spirit. At this point, it’s likely that all three are out of shape. But good news is coming for those who eat: the colorful and rejuvenating antidote can be as close as the kitchen and the produce section of one’s favorite store. Even better, a trip to the farmers markets, or one’s own garden, can literally and figuratively boost an appetite for the good life. Best of all, today’s mantra is “simplify.” A minimalist approach is not only easier, it’s better for the body. Time to rethink those heavy casseroles and hearty stews that got folks through the gloom of short dark days and long cold nights. As people shed layers of winter clothing and get outdoors and moving again, an array of clean,

Nancy McGinnis photo

Food has the most beneficial nutritional value (and often, eye appeal) when it is served simply as itself, at its seasonal best.

bright colors and textures on the plate matches their mood and outlook. Even better, it’s time to invite fresh fruits and vegetables to “come as you are” to the dining or picnic table.

ing better and healthier, and saving money in the bargain. Try to shop the periphery of the store, where one can find fruits and vegetables, dairy products, baked goods, meat and fish. They surround the aisles of processed convenience foods, where a person may be tempted by higher-priced, less nutritious (and often not as tasty) alternatives. Read labels. Many prepared foods contain far more additives than the homemade version. Sodium, saturated and trans fats, added sugars, refined grains, artificial colors and flavors can all contribute to chronic disease. Don’t have time to cook? Perhaps it is timing, not time, that really matters. Set aside some leisure time to prepare food in quantity, to be savored when a person can really benefit from a good meal but is too busy to fix it. Begin planning a menu by considering seasonal availability — choosing ingredients at their peak of taste, texture and nutritional goodness. By doing so, a person minimizes

In contrast to the planning and effort it can take to get through winter, a summertime mindset is more easygoing and impromptu. But informal doesn’t mean artless. Think strips of crunchy red, yellow, green and orange peppers as crudités; a casual mélange of chunks of fresh fruits in season, drizzled with lemon juice and honey as breakfast or dessert; an entire palette of leafy greens from pale to dark, speckled, striped or edged with contrasting color, as the foundation for an artful salad. Former Maine First Lady Karen Baldacci, who combines her educational background in nutrition and her busy lifestyle with her love of gardening and of good food, said: “I love mesclun (assorted small, tender, leafy young salad) greens — the pungent, sweet, bitter, and sharp flavors of the mix. They taste cool, fresh, and light, and I add them to sandwiches, salads, and at the last minute to soup or pizza.” Get back to basics, starting with real food. Avoiding convenience foods and starting from scratch may sound like the opposite of simplicity, but one soon finds he or she is eat-

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More on FOOD, Page 20

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There’s still a use for garage sale leftovers “Use it up. Wear it out. Make do or do without.” This saying is one that an Augusta native who lives in Scarborough lives by daily. Not only is it Kellie Guerrette’s mantra for recycling EVERYTHING, she shares this — in almost chant-like form — with family, friends, co-workers, clients and, yes, even strangers. As one of her “subjects,” this saying always comes to mind with the arrival of spring. While crocuses pop up in colorful splotches on neighbors’ lawns, so do other signs of the season: yard sale signs. These hand-made placards adorn many a utility pole leading true followers to the multiple garage and lawn sales that some have been preparing for all winter, while others throw the two-day event together in a week. But, what happens to the items after prices have been reduced and garage doors closed? Unfortunately, many just throw the leftovers away — because it’s easier. Wait! Stop! Remember! “Use it up. Wear it out. Make do or do without.” As the government continues to tighten its purse strings, a lot of nonprofits will be looking for ways to keep going. Many of these organizations help support those less fortunate or who have various health issues by

GET ORGANIZED by Kimberlee A. Barnett providing them with furnishings and clothing. • Make a call to the local homeless shelter or one of the mental health agencies in the area to see if they will take the dishes, pots and pans, and glassware that did not sell. They are not looking for 12-piece place-settings. Mismatched dishes go a long way for people who have no dishes at all. • Most nonprofit groups have fund-raising events every year. Ask around and find out which ones are looking for donated goods that they can sell to raise money. Many of them will collect year-round, storing the items until their next fundraiser takes place. Books. Bikes. Bedding. Bureaus. Don’t try to guess what they will or won’t take. Many times, they will take it all. Get organized and make the phone call. One nonprofit uses some of the donated items, like not-so-old TVs, as rewards for those who are achieving successes in overcoming addictions. One recipient was very excited to receive an extremely colorful comforter for her bed. Another was given a huge, framed picture. It’s the little things (that you were going to throw out) that are really BIG

things to others. Many local churches have food pantries as well as clothing and household goods sections for which they open their doors on scheduled days once or twice a month. • Don’t throw out those old linens as long as they are in good condition, and you’re done with them, give them to people who can use them. It will feel a lot better to donate a few bags of no-longer needed items rather than stacking them up roadside for the local trash haulers to pick up.

• Each June, the Humane Society Waterville Area holds a plant and book sale. This is a great way to “recycle” plants and books while benefiting our displaced fourlegged friends. • Another way to dispose of books is either by giving them to a town’s library or the library at many assisted living facilities. Seniors still find reading books an enjoyable pastime and welcome new ones on their bookshelves. Puzzles also give them many hours of pleasure. A person doesn’t have to know someone in a particular facility to donate, just go to the Yellow Pages and let your fingers do the walking. • Another thing people tend to throw out is the animal food of a recently deceased pet. Take the leftovers to the local animal shelter. Add Bowser’s dishes and (cleaned) doggie bed to the care package. These donations will certainly be welcomed. Many agencies also accept towels, facecloths and blankets to help care for the animals. Some of them even take scatter rugs (yard sale leftovers) for the puppies and kittens to lie on. If unsure about what they will use, go to their website or call them for their “wish list” and then plan accordingly.

More on ORGANIZED, Page 20

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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY people can anticipate freshly-harvested rhubarb, asparagus, radishes, spring turnips, scallions, peas, fiddleheads, culinary herbs including parsley and chives, and kale, spinach, chard, bok choy, tender young spinach, beet greens and early lettuces at farmers’ markets and farm stands. Chances are, if a plate is full of fresh, unprocessed colors, a person is eating well. In its latest revision of “Dietary Guidelines for Americans,” released in 2010, the USDA and U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services recommends dedicating half the plate at every meal to fruits and vegetables, while limiting sugars, fats and salt. Can we Americans subsist without consuming abundant fat and salt? Yes. Explore natural and ethnic markets, health food and specialty stores for an abundance of foods from kumquats to quinoa, and an array of herbs and spices, to reawaken dormant taste buds. A dash of fresh lemon or lime juice lends sparkle and often makes up for the absence of salt. Even novice gardeners can enjoy success and satisfaction cultivating a few easygoing herbs. Try planting sturdy perennials such as chives and mint as close as feasible to the kitchen door, so you can dash out on a whim and add fresh-from-the-garden color

Food Continued from Page 18

his or her carbon footprint, supports the local economy, often saves money and eats really well. Mix it up. Serve meals or dishes that represent family favorites with others that are a new culinary adventure. Hesitant to expand your horizons? Try combining mostly-familiar ingredients with one or two new elements. Farmer’s market vendors are wonderful sources of tips and information on how to select, store, prepare, serve and enjoy what they sell. MOFGA (Maine Organic Farmers and Growers Association) has produced a series of Maine Seasonal Food Guide leaflets outlining what’s in peak season at any given time of the year and listing the “Maine local 20,” Maine-grown or raised products available year round. These include blueberries and apples, potatoes, carrots, beets, garlic, cabbage, and onions, as well as milk, cheese and eggs, meat, fish and seafood, dry beans, wheat and oats, honey, and maple syrup. For May and June, MOFGA says,

and flavor to everything from salads to omelets to iced tea (or mojitos). Having one’s own source not only makes a person feel like a garden gourmet, it stretches a budget because it’s much cheaper than storebought in the first place, and there is no waste because it’s harvested only as needed. Lettuce varieties and radishes are also rewarding for beginning gardeners to grow. Ask at the local nursery or garden center for tips and advice on beginning a garden. And don’t forget that even some flowers are edible — bring the garden right to the table with colorful petals or small blossoms of violets, pansies, nasturtiums, bee balm, and other blooms on the plate. A word of caution. Asthma and allergy sufferers and others with sensitivities, should be wary of edible flowers. Consult a doctor or a reliable information source for more details. If you’ve been in an inspiration rut at mealtimes, spring into summer is a wonderful time of year to unleash kitchen creativity. And best of all, this is not a diet, it’s a way of living. Once a person get into the liberating groove of letting foods shine — solo or in artful groupings — there’s no going back.

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• Paint. What does one do with old paint? As long as it is still usable, don’t throw it out. Give it away. Even if there is not a lot left in the can, but is still good, the color may make a great accent color for a wall in someone else’s house. Or, use it to paint a small piece of furniture that needs a little pepping up. Put a sign up on the office bulletin board to see if there are any takers. Better yet, put a “free” sign up curbside with paint cans and other yard sale leftovers and see how fast they go. As long as the items are not badly damaged, they will go. • And, of course, clothing. Unless the garment is stained or has holes in it, someone somewhere will wear your discarded items. Don’t throw them away. If you can’t be bothered with consignment, there are various thrift shops or agencies that will know exactly how to disperse them. Just bag’em and drop’em off. One office has its own in-house clothing swap a couple of times a year — spring and fall. A sign is put up a week before the event so those who want to participate know when to bring in their clothing and jewelry. The selections may also include items that their children have outgrown. This is a great way to get a few new pieces to add to your wardrobe or a family member’s wardrobe without spending a cent. Why not try organizing this in your workplace? It can be run like a free-for-all or you can pick numbers and each one takes a turn. Including a potluck luncheon adds to the fun. • “Use it up. Wear it out. Make do or do without.” Try to keep this in mind as you spring clean and are about to stuff something into a trash bag that is destined for the dump. Unless it is really rubbish, try to find a home for it where it will benefit someone rather than adding to the mounds at the local landfill. Yes, a little more work, but a lot more rewarding!

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Treatment offers hope for one type of vertigo BY BONNIE N. DAVIS Correspondent

As a young life guard in his hometown of Newton, N.J., Shawn McGlew, a certified physician assistant, never dreamed of being the ‘go to’ person on the eastern seaboard for paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) — a debilitating form of vertigo originating in the inner ear. McGlew came to his current interest in vertigo by a circuitous route. While he enjoyed his job as a life guard, McGlew — now president and chief executive officer of Express Care in Waterville — got the medical bug when he joined the local first aid squad. He dreamed of becoming a cardiac surgeon, went off to Boston University to major in biology and worked in the cardiac research lab at Massachusetts General Hospital. Deciding he wanted a family rather than the grueling hours of a surgical residency, McGlew went to Northeastern University and became a physician assistant. “I lived in Boston then and did two rotations up here — one in OB-GYN — at Maine General,” he said. When a job became available in the emergency room, he applied. “I was one of the only ones wearing a suit. Dr. Larry Cassman said they were

Bonnie Davis photo

Shawn McGlew, a certified physician assistant, discusses benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. a type of vertigo cured in 95 percent of his treatments, often in one office visit. Sixty-four percent of those diagnosed with this condition are women.

impressed.” Just prior to going on a medical mission trip to St. Jude’s Hospital on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia, McGlew said he happened to read about BPPV and the Epley Maneuver. Although this type of vertigo was first described by Barany in 1921, Dix and Hallpike initiated a method of positional testing in 1952 that identified the condition as well as which ear had the canalithiasis — the presence of ‘canal rocks’ — in the semicircular canal, or balance tubes of the inner ear. When these crystals become free floating in the canal, movement and force cause vertigo. Other treatments include the pharmaceutical Antivert, which is said to mask rather than cure the condition, and two rapid movement maneuvers — the Brant-Doroff and the Semont — that are applied to the head, and not always successful. However, Dr. John Epley, developed a noninvasive technique in 1980 that repositions the canaliths in one or two office visits, with a 95 percent cure rate when done by a trained professionaL. McGlew read about the Epley maneuver and went to St Lucia to set up an emergency room at St. Jude’s. “Sure enough, we had a nurse come in one night with symptoms consistent with ver-

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tigo holding onto things and throwing up,” he said. McGlew said he performed positional testing, which includes having the patient lie down, and slowly rotate the head in the method set down by Dix and Hallpike. Observing the direction of the nystagmus — rapid movement or flickering of the eyes — McGlew determined which ear was affected. After applying the Epley maneuver, the treatment was over. So was the mission trip and McGlew returned to Maine without following up with the first patient on which he used the new technique. When he returned to St. Jude’s the following year, McGlew said the nurse he had worked on ran up to him and said, “‘ I was better — it fixed me up right away.’” “I read more on it and talked with John Epley. So now, I’ve been doing it for 15 years. I’ve seen patients all up and down the east coast — New York, Virginia — from physician referrals and E.N.T.s (ear, nose and throat specialists). I’m the ‘go-to’ person for vertigo. According to McGlew, vertigo is the general catch phrase for a multitude of diseases that exhibit as dizziness, including but not limited to BPPV, strokes, high blood presMore on VERTIGO, Page 22

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Wednesday, April 22, 20, 2011

Vertigo Continued from Page 21

sure, Méniére disease and a type of cancer called acoustic neuroma. A patient may have this type of vertigo and other diseases affecting the inner ear at the same time. “BPPV is not a condition of light-headedness. There is no persistent vomiting, no chest pains, no severe headaches, no numbness and no shortness of breath,” he said. While the internet outlines the Dix and Hallpike diagnostic technique and the Epley maneuver, diagnosis by a trained professional is essential. “The nystagmus determines which ear needs treatment,” McGlew said. “The crystals have momentum and push fluid into the nerve. You can just be walking along and fall over — it’s like a ketchup bottle — it just lets go. McGlew said the maneuver moves the displaced crystals back into place. “After a treatment, I tell them to just walk around for a few days to a week like they’re wearing a cervical collar — move slowly and avoid getting your hair cut, going to the dentist or getting a massage during that time. As well as treating more than 300 patients, including 60 at Express Care, McGlew trained other physician assistants through presentations at the national convention for the American Association of Physician

Women’s Q UA RT E R LY Assistants in Las Vegas, Boston, Chicago and Atlanta. During noon conferences at MaineGeneral, McGlew also gives presentations with PowerPoint. “I give it once or twice every few years,” McGlew said. “Some residents and doctors try it — the vast majority refers patients. The hard part is, people say they’re dizzy and are told to go see Shawn — he treats dizziness. I don’t treat dizziness, I treat BPPV...there are not a lot of things where you can leave the doctor’s office cured.” Contact McGlew at Express Care located at 325-C, Kennedy Memorial Drive in Waterville or by calling 873-3961 for diagnosis and treatment of BPPV.

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