Trillium Family Services wants to build brighter futures for children and their families. Vice President of Community Operations Lana Shotwell talks with Anna Canzano about how Covid-19 has impacted the mental health of children and how to help improve it.
- Anxiety and depression has grown since the pandemic. Behavior issues have also increased in children since they haven't been able to be in social situations. Family conflicts have also been observed because families have been cooped up together for over a year.
- As the summer approaches and some students have gone the whole year doing distance learning, motivation is severely lacking in students.
- Shotwell said teachers and schools have done the best they can to help students make it through the school year. Most kids are resilient and can see the light at the end of the tunnel but not everyone can.
- Trillium made a quick transition to tele-health once the pandemic started. The therapists at Trillium got creative and found ways to get kids and families involved and engaged in their services. Kids are typically more engaged with a therapist when the parents are present and engaged as well.
- Keeping routines intact will help children stay focused and help their mental health. Get your kids outside in the fresh air! The weather is getting nicer and getting your kids outside to play will be so beneficial for them.
- Parents might want to be a little more lenient when it comes to the academic requirements this year. It's important that kids do their schoolwork, but homework shouldn't be more important than making sure their mental health is okay. It has been so hard on kids not being able to get that social interaction at school and not having their friends around. Make sure they are doing okay first before making sure they got their homework done.
- There is a lot of concern and uncertainty surrounding what will happen back at school in the fall. Will kids be able to be back in person? If so, will they be able to sit still in class all day? Will they be lacking social skills? A lot of schools have Trillium Family Services coming to schools in the fall to work with kids on any issues they may be having.
- Shotwell shared a trick to getting your child to open up - go for a drive with them. Since you're in a car, they don't have to look at you so sometimes that helps them say things that might be difficult for them. Also, spend time with your kids and really be present. Spending quality time together every day (even if you have a teenager who might "hate you") will really help with their mental health.
- There are signs to look for that will tell you it might be time to take your child to talk with someone at Trillium Family Services. If your child makes any comments about harming themselves, go get help right away. If kids are refusing to go back to school, that's another sign something might be going on. Every kid will have their tantrum and get upset, but notice how long that lasts. If it is prolonged, that might be another clue your child should talk to a professional.
- ZOOMCARE has opened a super clinic in Bridgeport Village. This super clinic is meant to fill the gap between an urgent care clinic and the emergency room.
- Covid-19 has been a challenge for those working in emergency rooms. People who are in for Covid-19 need to be separate from those who broke their leg or have kidney stones. Also, Covid-19 has made people afraid of going to the emergency room if they're in pain because they don't want to be exposed to the virus.
-ZOOMCARE wants everyone who is in pain to receive the care they need.
- This super clinic is different than a hospital because you'll talk to your healthcare provider right away. You don't have to talk to a check-in person, then a nurse, and then a doctor. You'll go in, and the physician will come out to meet you and bring you back to talk with you about what's going on and what symptoms you are having. It's different than the emergency room because there is hardly a wait and you're with that physician all the way through your experience.
- Typically, you can get in and out of the ZOOMCARE super clinic within 60 minutes. Plus, they have medications there so you won't have to make an extra stop at the pharmacy and wait to get medicine.
- All ZOOMCARE clinics can provide ultrasounds, CT scans and some locations can do X-rays, as well.
- If you have a life threatening emergency, the best place to go is the emergency room. If you're not sure what's going on and you're able to get to a ZOOMCARE clinic, go there and they can assess and help you make the right call.
- If the right call is visiting the emergency room, ZOOMCARE can help facilitate that and get you admitted into the hospital if needed.
- A great thing that ZOOMCARE does that you won't find at the hospital is they tell you exactly what tests they will run and what they mean, plus how long they will take.
- They love feedback at ZOOMCARE. After your visit, you'll get a text message about your experience and ask for feedback. They want to hear from you and improve how you get healthcare.
- ZOOMCARE accepts most major insurance and will work with those that don't have insurance.
- The Bridgeport Village ZOOMCARE super clinic is open 7 days a week from 7am-12am. They want to be able to provide care whenever needed so they take walk-ins and appointments. Get the ZOOMCARE app on Apple or Android phones.
- The most common type of house fire is a kitchen fire. The cause is usually unattended food on the stovetop. Oftentimes people will return to a fire on the stove and panic and not know what to do. Fires double in size every minute so a small fire can quickly become a big fire. Sometimes it isn't the food that catches on fire, it's that there are flammable or combustable items near the heat source.
- Everyone should have a fire extinguisher in their kitchen!
- You want to keep a fire extinguisher close to your stove (but not too close because it is pressurized content) and in a place where you automatically think to look for it.
- Practice and familiarize yourself and your family with how a fire extinguisher works and what you need to do in order to use it. Aim the fire extinguisher at the base of the fire because you want to take the oxygen away from it. Sweep across the base of the fire from side to side. If you aim it in the wrong spot, you can quickly spend the contents of the extinguisher without putting the fire out.
- You never ever want to put water on a grease fire. Water will immediately react with the oil and it can splash and cause burns. Check and see if the fire extinguisher you have can be used on grease fires. Most of the ones you find at retail stores can be used on cooking fires but you want to make sure.
- If experiencing a grease fire, you want to try to cover it with a lid if you can safely do so without burning your hand and then turn the oven off to stop the heat.
- You should have a fire extinguisher on every level of your house and have one in the garage. Also, if you have a craft room or workspace that a fire could spark, you should keep an extinguisher there as well.
- If disposing of a fire extinguisher, you need to do that through a hazardous materials site.
- Extinguishers usually have a shelf life of about 10 years. There are different kinds of extinguishers but they are all required to print the expiration date on them.
- You want one smoke alarm on every level of your home. If possible, you should have one in the bedrooms of your home. Ideally you'll have interconnecting smoke alarms meaning if one goes off on the first floor of your house, all the other ones in your home will go off as well.
- Test smoke alarms every month!
- It's common for people to take the batteries out of smoke alarms so it doesn't sound when they're cooking. But, they don't always get put back in and that can lead to some tragic outcomes. Newer smoke alarms have a hush feature so you can still leave it connected without it going off while you're cooking.
- Some smoke alarms also come with carbon monoxide alarms and can sound when there is toxic gas in your home. They are a little more expensive so having one in the central part of your house should be fine.
Other home fires
- After kitchen fires, the next most common house fire is due to a home heating equipment fire. These typically happen if something is stored too close to baseboard heaters, a fireplace etc. You really need at least three feet of space in between those heaters and items.
- Improper disposal of fire place ashes can start fires. Some people dispose of them in the yard debris bin and coals can stay hot for a long time. This can set the bin on fire and if those are stored next to your house, it can easily catch the outside of your house on fire.
- If you have any upper level rooms, you should have an escape ladder accessible. You should think about where the best place to store it. You don't want to keep it in your room if you think you'll have to go to get your kids out of their rooms.
- Practice evacuating with your family.
- Have a meeting place outside of your house. You never want to go back into a house that is on fire, so having a meeting place everyone in your family knows to go in the case you need to evacuate can save lives.
- It is better to sleep with your door closed. It's not fire that kills people, it's the toxic smoke. If a fire starts while you're asleep, having the door closed can buy you precious and potentially life saving time so you can get out and not breathe in as much smoke.
- Feel the door knob with the back of your hand and not the palm. You'll need your palm to climb down the ladder so you don't want to burn that if the door knob is hot.
- Every year, TVFR responds to a Christmas tree fire. Artificial trees are a little more fire safe. Whatever type of tree you have, make sure the lights you put on it are not frayed or too old. Some LED lights don't give off any heat and those are great to put on a tree.
- Get a fire safe! If you do have a house fire, you want your priority to be getting out of the house and not worry about gathering important belongings. If you have a fire safe, all your important documents and pictures will be protected so you can focus on getting out.
- Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue has tons of information regarding escape plans, emergency preparedness, fire extinguishers, etc.
- Disaster planning and recovery happens usually in three phases. The first is planning and that includes:
- Have an emergency plan including a place to evacuate to and having a go bag ready at all times.
- Sign up for emergency alerts so you are notified right away if a disaster is happening.
- Once you seek refuge from a disaster the second phase is recouping from your losses. This includes insurance claims and applying to FEMA for financial assistance.
- The third phase is rebuilding your life. This could include: rebuilding your home, maybe moving, rebuilding your business etc.
What you can do right now
- Get insurance! If you have insurance, review it. Make sure your insurance covers what you need it to cover.
- If you rent, renters insurance exists. This will cover all the personal property you own in the space you are renting.
- Insurance can also sometimes cover costs you might not think about like the cost of staying in a hotel if something happens to your home or the cost of food if you had to evacuate your home. This is usually covered in a homeowners insurance but it is also covered for renters insurance as well.
- Take inventory of your home or business. If something happens, insurance will want to have a list of everything that was lost or damage in a disaster. If you are unable to provide an item by item list, they might not give you up to the policy limit. The more information you have for the insurance company, the better.
- A simple way to do this so you don't have to go through your home with a notepad and a pen is take a video and just walk through your house. Open all the cupboards in your kitchen and show everything in your closet. Even down to lightbulbs and pens. Include everything you own or you might not be compensated for all your belongings if they are lost.
- Safeguard your identification. Make sure all your legal documents, financial documents and any important information is in a safe place. People can run into a lot of issues with insurance if they don't have the documents they need in order to file a claim.
- If applying for FEMA, someone in your home needs to be a citizen. You need a passport, social security or something to prove you're a citizen. Sometimes these things can be recovered if lost, but it takes a lot of time. It's vital to have important documents safe in the event of a disaster.
- Investigate the status of the title you have on your home or vehicle. If you own your home, you can look up the property records and make sure you are the sole owner of your assets. If you aren't, other people on the title can be compensated if the property or vehicle is damaged.
Scams and contractor issues
- There are a lot of people out there ready to take advantage of people after hardships. Some people will go door to door claiming to be with FEMA and try to get bank account information or some type of payment. FEMA will not ask you for that kind of information.
- Some contractors may have an expired license and may not be the most trustworthy. There is a Buyers Beware resource you can visit to get information on contractors in your area that operate without a license. Check that before hiring anyone to make sure you aren't getting scammed and lose thousands of dollars.
- Typically you shouldn't pay a contractor in full, don't pay in cash and don't let the money/payment get ahead of the work being done.
- For more information on contractors and how to find one you can trust, check out the Oregon Construction Contractors Board.
- The Oregon State Bar is in partnership with Oregon Legal Aid Services, FEMA and The Red Cross to provide free legal services to eight counties across Oregon that were declared a federal disaster. If you're in the counties Clackamas, Douglas, Marion, Jackson, Klamath, Lane, Lincoln or Linn, you can call the hotline at 1-800-452-7637 or visit oregondisasterlegalservices.org to get lots of information and free legal help if you have been affected by the wildfires.
- A great resource for preparing for a disaster is ready.gov. This site includes checklists and resources on how to be prepared for any situation you may find yourself in. It can help you build an escape plan, how to prepare your pets or kids, an emergency financial first aid kit, business preparation if you own a company and countless others.
- It's important to begin the discussion of menopause and perimenopause by understanding the terms.
- Menopause is one day. It is the 12 month anniversary of your final period. The phase of life preparing for and leading up to menopause is called perimenopause, which means around. Every day after the menopause anniversary is called postmenopause, and that phase will last the rest of your life.
- Perimenopause is a relatively new term that was coined in 1996. Weir says perimenopause is a great opportunity to invest in your health. That investment might look like getting informed and educated, having more conversations about your body and what it will go through and building your mid-life health team.
- Weir says hormone imbalance is not taught in medical school so sometimes it is difficult to talk to your doctor about symptoms you may be experiencing.
- Hot flashes and night sweats, if they are experienced, predominately will happen in the final stages of perimenopause. Weir likes to explain them as a tap on the shoulder. It's your body's way of telling you it wants some attention and may be missing something like progesterone or estrogen. It's an opportunity to talk with your health care team because it isn't something you should have to ride out or put up with.
- Hormone therapy is a very individualized protocol. First, look at your sleep patterns, diet and exercise. You can talk to a hormone balance expert and find out if hormone therapy is a good option for you. There are risks, especially if you have underlying health conditions. For most women it is an option, especially if you are under 60 years old and are within 10 years of menopause when you start the therapy.
- Establishing a mid-life health team is important. A lot of people will just assume a person with the doctor title will have the expertise needed to work with them which isn't always true! Interview and ask them questions. You will find out who you can trust and who will work best with you.
- Vaginal dryness is a very common issue women have dealt with. Estrogen is the "juicy" hormone. It's responsible for keeping our eyes, mouth and vagina moist and joints lubricated. Weir has found that less than 4% of women who are experiencing vaginal dryness are receiving treatment. If your quality of life is diminishing because of something, bring it up with your health care provider because suffering is not an option.
- Preventative measures and solutions can include having lots of sex and orgasms, see a pelvic floor physiotherapist, practice regular pelvic floor exercises, moisturize with hyaluronic acid, localized estrogen therapy and laser therapy.
- There are many things to celebrate at this stage of life. Some women celebrate no longer having to take birth control, no more periods and just an overall sense of freedom.
- Weir says the only thing predictable about perimenopause is that your period will be unpredictable. The most common experience in perimenopause is irregular bleeding. You can go almost a year without a period and think you're on your way to menopause and then you can get your period out of nowhere.
- The average age of menopause in North America is 51.
- Menopause Chicks Facebook Page - a group of women discussing personal struggles and celebrations of menopause
- MoisturizeYourVagina.com - products to help if you are experiencing vaginal dryness
How to help people who are struggling mentally
- One thing you can do is really listen. As a country, we have been in an isolated state for months and that can be emotionally taxing on people. Taking the time to listen to someone who doesn't have a lot of social interaction can help immensely. Don't listen to respond and try to help. Sometimes just being a safe place where people can open up and get all their thoughts out is the best thing you can do.
Mental health and kids
- Kids depend on adults to keep their routine and help them feel safe. It can be extremely difficult for kids now that they aren't able to interact with people their age. One thing to do for kids is to get loved ones and family members that may be far away on a Zoom call or FaceTime. Actually being able to see someone's face that they recognize can be good for them.
- With kids doing virtual school, they are on the computer or tablet all day. It is important for their mental and physical health to take breaks. Make sure they take time to eat a snack or get some fresh air with a walk outside.
- Routine is important for kids to feel secure, but it's also important to take breaks and do something that makes you and your kids happy.
- Also, if your child is taking classes through Zoom, encourage them to turn their cameras on and engage with their classmates and teachers. This can benefit not only them, but others that may not have any social contact.
- Sleep is extremely important! Try to get at least 8 hours of good sleep each night.
- Having healthy, nutritious snacks throughout the day can help keep energy up throughout the day.
- Exercise! Exercising for an hour a day is so beneficial for your mental state. If you can't get a whole hour in, that's okay! Do what you can, especially if you don't feel like it. You'll feel better afterward.
- You may not be able to see all your loved ones like normal. It's important to try to think of new ways to connect with people. Make and hold up a sign outside their window if you aren't able to be in the same room with them. Go for a walk at an appropriate distance apart, if possible. Think of new ways you're able to show people you are thinking about them.
- Trillium Family Services have a variety of mental health resources for you and your children.
- This is a very difficult time we are living in. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts, seek help from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline here or call 800-273-8255. People care about you and want to help. Don't be afraid to ask for help.
Komal Dixit started her page @classywomenn for herself. She wanted to post things to keep her motivated and positive. Within three years, she has over 730 thousand followers on Instagram.
How to get customers for your business through Instagram 3:40
- Find your niche and target market. Post content daily and interact with people commenting on your posts. Dixit suggested posting free tips and answer questions your followers ask frequently. This is how you build relationships with your followers and gain their trust. This can lead to getting their business.
- For organic growth only, Dixit says the most important thing is to post one thing daily that is of value for your followers.
How to overcome shadow banning and the algorithm 7:00
- Shadow banning is when a platform restricts visibility of your posts so only your followers are able to see your content. This can happen sometimes when you comment too much on posts or send too many direct messages in a short period of time. Dixit said social platforms are like humans. They have a health, so you need to keep your profile healthy. Too much commenting or messaging can be seen as spam.
- Definitely try to interact with all your followers, but if you have a ton of comments to reply to, try to space them out so you don't have to deal with the potential shadow ban.
What are shoutouts? 13:38
- You can purchase shoutouts. This means you would go to pages within your niche that has a large amount of followers. You can pay for them to promote your page on theirs and thus gain some more followers of your own. Dixit advised to make sure they have the same type of followers you want for your page.
- The cost depends on how many followers the page has. It can cost anywhere from $10-$300. Start out on smaller pages and if it helps gain followers for you, move onto bigger pages.
Are stories important? 18:25
- Stories are very important! The feed explains your brand. The posts are the first thing people see when they click on your profile. But, stories allow you to interact on a different level with your followers. You can ask your followers questions and get feedback from them to get an idea of what they want to see from your page. Dixit said if you want to get to know your audience, use stories.
- It's also very helpful to go to other pages within your niche and comment on their posts. This helps you build relationships with other people within your field. Be genuine within your comments. Don't just post some generic response.
What are some common Instagram mistakes? 21:57
-Not being consistent when posting. It is so important to post content daily. People follow you for your content so if you don't post, you will lose followers.
- Use hashtags within your original caption and not in the comments. Don't use an extreme amount. Keep it at a reasonable amount so it doesn't look like spam. Dixit suggests using between 10-15 hashtags that are relatable to your content and brand.
Is it worth it to buy followers? 26:40
- Typically, purchased followers are all bots. They won't interact with your page so it really isn't worth it to have more followers. It's better to have less followers that interact and engage with your page than having millions of followers and no comments on your posts.
- Dixit wants people to know it is possible to gain a following on Instagram. She said your first priority shouldn't be the followers, it should be creating content that will help people. That is how you will be successful.
First job paperwork 1:50
- Many people starting their first real job right out of college don't know how to make sense of the first day paperwork that's required to be filled out and returned within a few days. It can be very confusing to understand all the financial jargon when you haven't learned about it in school or from family.
- Brumm recommends a resource through the International Revenue Service website. It asks you a few questions, calculates the information and gives you a number so you know what your taxes and withholdings will look like.
- Sign up and start your 401k! Even if it is just a small starting amount, do it. Also, if your company matches your 401k deposits, say yes to that as it is essentially free money.
Life insurance 6:05
- Life insurance is a benefit that is voluntary. Sometimes it may be offered and payed for by your company and if that's the case, Brumm suggests to just take it. It doesn't hurt to have it.
- Some younger people don't know who to give it to or don't see a need for it. But if you're a parent, sign up for it for sure. Also, if you don't get life insurance when you're young and you get a medical condition, it may be harder for you to get the insurance later. If you have some type of ailment or condition in your family history like cancer or heart attacks, it's good just to get the life insurance while you can when you are young.
- You can put money aside in things like life insurance that allow you to get the insurance, offers tax-free growth and it's accessible for you when it comes to retirement age.
Savings Accounts 7:30
- You are allowed to open different accounts for certain things you are saving for. For example, you can have a separate account for "kitchen remodel" and "Paris vacation." Having different accounts that you're able to name is very helpful because it helps keep you accountable so you don't spend that money for something else.
- If you have trouble with spending, open an account across town and don't get a debit card. That way it is harder to access your money so you won't spend as much as often!
How to track spending 10:45
- One of Brumm's favorite ways to track spending is an online resource called Mint. You can put in your accounts, mortgage etc. anything that has an online presence and it can link those with tax resources and help with your taxes. It helps keep all your accounts in one place so you don't have to track different account or credit card numbers to different websites. It's all in one place!
Money Tracking Resources and Apps
- YNAB (You need a budget)
- If you're just starting out, there are many different ways to start and register your business. You can create an LLC, which isn't really a tax advantage, but if someone were to sue your company, it keeps the assets of your entity sheltered so it doesn't touch your personal assets. Brumm suggests seeking legal advice especially when starting out just so you get everything set up properly.
- You should definitely try to set up a new account for your business so you keep your personal funds separate.
- Women in business classes
- General business classes
- Small business education and training
What bonds you can set up for your child 28:35
- There are mutual funds out there that are municipal bonds only. It's like a savings account in a sense. Looking at the statement with your child is very beneficial for both of you because they get to learn and see how it works first hand.
Brumm at My Financial Girlfriend works with all people. You don't have to make $100,000 a year in order to get a meeting with her. She wants to educate others so they know how to understand their finances.