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Greater Metro

Rooftop benefit for Urban Equestrian Program

"Rockin' on the Rooftop," a benefit for the newly founded Urban Equestrian Program (UEP) presented by Southern Blues Equestrian Center in partnership with the City of Memphis, will be held on Aug. 17th from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Peabody Hotel Skyway Ballroom and Rooftop Terrace.

UEP offers inner city Memphis children the chance to learn about horses in a way that promotes responsibility, confidence, discipline, and empathy. The goal is to expose children to an opportunity they might otherwise never experience.

The program is currently offered at the Whitehaven Community Center and will gradually roll out to all Memphis community centers. After completing the classes, children who have shown an interest or skill may remain students at the Southern Blues Equestrian Center free of charge.

New move on homelessness

2mayors-200Four years from now, 800 homeless families would have received short-term financial assistance and home-based support, and 100 "highly vulnerable" homeless families would have received long-term housing and intensive aid, if two major efforts unfold as envisioned by Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. and Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell Jr.

Wharton and Luttrell announced Thursday (July 11) what was labeled as "significant progress." The announcement came on the second anniversary of the Memphis and Shelby County Action Plan to End Homelessness.

The two initiatives are:

GOOD BLUE: Captain Faith Cunningham

goodblue-600"Grande Mocha is a mixture of coffee, hot chocolate and milk. If I had my way I'd definitely go by Starbucks every morning. Unfortunately, there's not one in my area, so I get by here as often as I can," said Captain Faith Cunningham of the Shelby County Sheriff's Department.

Starbucks was a cool enough place for me, so I focused in on the interview. I'd read that she'd been on the force for 16 years, having spent eight years before that in the Reserves.

Kelvin Cowans: Tell me, what have you learned about people in all this time?

  • Written by Kelvin Cowans
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‘Biggest Losers’ a good thing at Methodist Hospital South

biglosers-600Undaunted by uncertainty, Linda Smith – Methodist South Hospital community development manager – took on the task of putting a positive spin on the term biggest loser. Her resolve is paying off.

As part of Methodist Healthcare's myHealthy Life wellness program, Methodist South Hospital recently held a "Biggest Losers" competition. Smith designed the program, which also includes fitness speaker sessions, walks with administrators and exercise classes.

"We weren't sure what kind of participation we would have when we started," said Smith. "But we had 54 to sign-up and most have kept a great deal of interest and motivation in the program."

Fifth Annual Health Fair and Family Fun Day on July 13

The New Tri-State Defender and the Orange Mound Community will be in full-collaboration mode on Saturday – and it's all about good health.

Following two years of taking its annual Let's Move Memphis Summer Health Fair and Family Fun Day to other parts of Greater Memphis, the TSD returns to The Mound. The 2013 event is set for 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Orange Mound Community Center, 2572 Park Ave.

Five years old, the TSD Health Fair and Family Fun Day was launched in Orange Mound. Last year, it was held at Douglas High School after being hosted at Manassas High School in 2011. Every year, the common denominator is health information and screenings in a fun interactive environment.

Avoid rush, plan ahead for school immunizations

healthcare-logo-160As the new school year approaches, the Shelby County Health Department (SCHD) is reminding parents about immunization requirements before the school year begins.

Individuals falling into any of the following groups are required to receive immunizations: childcare facilities, preschool and pre-kindergarten; kindergarten; entering seventh grade; new students to Tennessee; and higher education.

MAHS scholar earns a prestigious summer journey

MAHSstudent-600Robbie Williams, a rising senior at Memphis Academy of Health Sciences High School, left Memphis Monday for a five-week experience at Phillips Academy Summer Session in Andover, Mass. She is one of only two Memphis-area students accepted to attend the prestigious summer program.

Founded in April 1778, the boarding school is one of the oldest and most competitive in the country. Its alumni list reflects a who's who of American leadership, including William Clarence Mathews (1901), attorney to Booker T. Washington and Marcus Garvey; Presidents, George H.W. Bush (1942) and George W. Bush (1964); and George Bundy Smith (1955), the African-American judge whose landmark 2004 decision ended the death penalty in New York state.

Last week, Robbie and her mother, Kellie Williams, shared their thoughts on the opportunity and her future.

Rest in peace Bobby ‘Blue’ Bland

Bland-Funeral-600Bobby "Blue" Bland was laid to rest Thursday afternoon after a 2-plus hour celebration of his life and legacy.

The celebration featured reflections by Memphis elected officials, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, as well as Al Bell, David Porter and B.B. King. Blues Foundation president Jay Sieleman was one of the featured speakers as well.

Musical selections were performed by Otis Clay and Shirley Brown. The Bland family has asked that all memorials be sent to The Blues Foundation's HART Fund.