Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Healthcare "rap-up"

The Human Services Coalition recently decided to organize a retrospective of health care reform before moving forward to the implementation of the new law. To help them carry out their goal, they have enlisted the unrivaled talent of health care hip hop sensation Sick Rick. The result: pure genius. Enjoy.
-Caitlin & Cal

Friday, May 21, 2010

A Casa Bella bowling party

A Casa Bella Transitional Housing will host a bowling party June 5 from 1 -4 pm at AMF Pembroke Pines Lanes, 1940 North University Drive, Pembroke Pines, 33024. Proceeds from this event will benefit A Casa Bella, which provides homes for women and children with nowhere else to go. I was at A Casa Bella's Mother's Day event earlier this month and was moved by the stories of women who find themselves homeless after a divorce or financial upheaval. They produced a great video about these heroines (watch the trailer) that illustrates the need for housing assistance in our community. (I was also happy to see HSC friends Martena Johnson and Amina Rodriguez honored for their dedication to parenting.) Tickets to the bowling party are $15.00. RSVP's requested.Martena Johnson with her daughter at the A Casa Bella Mother's Day event May 1. Martena is a Parent Leadership Training Institute grad and an A Casa Bella honoree.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Legislative wrap-up subject of next Downtown Bay Forum

Downtown Bay Forum

The Florida House and Senate recently adjourned a legislative session that seriously mobilized educators and has health care and women's rights advocates frantically calling for vetoes from Gov. Charlie Crist. The Downtown Bay Forum's next luncheon (May 26 at the Marriott on Bayshore Dr., 11:30 a.m.) will focus on the 2010 legislative session. HSC's own Jacob Coker-Dukowitz will be one of the speakers reporting on state-wide policy developments. Other speakers include United Teachers of Dade Pres. Karen Aronowitz and M-DCPS School Board Member Ana Rivas Logan. Education promises to be a major component of the discussion, as SB 6's passage and subsequent veto by Crist was one of the most talked-about issues of the session.

Jake will probably reflect on HSC's trip to Tallahassee last month, during which advocates from Miami-Dade lobbied for tax reform and improvements to Florida KidCare, among other things.

For more info on DBF and registration for this event, call Annette Eisenberg-- (305) 757-3633.

Lessons from the session

At a Planned Parenthood press conference this morning, Sen. Dan Gelber and other state legislators spoke out against HB 1143, which passed on the last day of session. The bill requires women to receive an ultrasound before having an abortion and places restrictions on health care benefits at businesses that receive tax credits. Planned Parenthood decried not only the content of this legislation, but the manner in which it was passed. Rep. Richard Steinberg argued that future sessions will be even more contentious and polarized as moderates leave the House and Senate and are replaced by either extreme right-wing or extreme left-wing legislators.

Some of the legislative aides in the room had advice for advocates hoping to have their voices heard. They told the group, don't worry if you can't meet with the legislator himself; their aides are often the best "vehicle" for carrying your message. Also, sending letters and e-mails and making phone calls truly makes a difference. The inundation of communication in response to SB 6 was one of the driving factors behind Crist's decision to veto the bill.

For more of the scoop on the Florida legislature, attend the Downtown Bay Forum May 26.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Live from the Roots in the City Farmers Market

We were chilling the other day at the farmers market in Overtown where it was 1 billion degrees outside. Delerious from heat exhaustion, Caitlin, Nadine and I got on camera to give you an insider's view of the Rooot in the City Farmers Market.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Caitlin & Cal Imagine Miami with construction paper and a window

Have you ever had an idea that would improve the community for everyone? So have we! Check out how Caitlin and I envision our office's block then let us know what you think this Friday at the Imagine Miami Changemaker Conference. Don't forget to sign up at

Vlogging: Changemaker Conference IV

We're so excited about the upcoming Changemaker Conference that we had the irresistable urge to vlog. Yes, we get get paid to do this: