Circle of Friends for the Dying (Aired on December 31, 2016, and January 1, 2017)
RadioRotary interviews Laurie Swartz and Rev. Lynda Carré about the Death Cafés they help run as part of Circle of Friends for the Dying in Ulster and Dutchess Counties. A Death Café is a gathering of a few people in a home, a church, a restaurant, or other venue where the conversation over tea or coffee and cake is all about dying. Our population is growing older every year and death will come to all of us—many who are not very old die as well—but few are prepared for it and many don’t even want to think or talk about it. The Death Café experience, often with a speaker, is offered about once a month at various locations around Ulster and Dutchess counties. A new project for the Circle of Friends for the Dying is a home in Kingston where a person who lives alone and is close to dying will be able to live with one or two others, which many would prefer to dying in a hospital or nursing home or dying alone at home.
Matthew Swerdloff and his wife Elisa Gold were devastated when their 15-year-old daughter Maya Gold unexpectedly committed suicide in 2015, but they determined that they would work to support and empower other teenagers. They formed the Maya Gold Foundation that helps teenagers access their inner wisdom and realize their dreams. Because one of Maya’s dreams was to help orphans in Nepal, the Foundation.
Nepal Youth Foundation
Children and Mothers in Nepal
Jonah Triebwasser interviews Cary Institute disease ecologist Shannon LaDeau on the recently recognized dangers from the Zika virus and on the mosquitoes that carry it from human to human. Zika has been known in the Old World since the 1940s but did not reach the Western Hemisphere until 2014, when travelers brought it to Brazil. It has since spread widely through South America, the Caribbean, and some neighborhoods in Florida. Zika is carried from person to person primarily by two species of tropical and subtropical mosquitoes that are daytime biters and to a lesser degree by sexual relations. About 80% of humans infected show mild symptoms or none, but the disease can cause severe damage to an unborn child if the mother is infected. The main concern has been microcephaly, which results in an abnormally small skull and likely brain damage.
Pleasant Valley Rotarian Ellen Haggerty is the guest on RadioRotary, discussing Rotarian Action Groups (RAGs) and Rotary Fellowship Groups with special emphasis on the RAG Rotarians for Hearing, an action group started by Ms. Haggerty. Rotarians for Hearing has a grant from the Rotary Foundation that covers hearing tests for newborns in Guatemala. An electronic device checks the baby’s ears to see if they are working properly; babies with difficulties are sent to Guatemala City for brain scans that reveal hearing problems in detail. It is important to get to children before the age of six, because older children who have never heard language then fail to learn it. There is much more of interest on this program—how Ms. Haggerty became involved in hearing about how she has traveled the world as a member of the Travel and Hosting Rotary Fellowship.