On Friday, the opening ceremony began with the singing of the National Anthem. Director Wright also presented several city police officers with plaques of appreciation for their community service. Farisa introduced the team coaches and a DJ entertained everyone with music. On Saturday, the teams suited up and gathered into the gym prepared to play for a first place prize of five hundred dollars. A community fair included local artist, Michael Ward, Jewelry Maker, Mary Pat Tate and theater educator Emily Faith of the Little Rock Repertoire. Entertainment included a local DJ, a dance team, spoken word and poetry artists. On Sunday, the participants and organizers gathered to conclude the event in a private ceremony where they gave winners trophies and medals of recognition.
Spondylosis, Paget's Disease, Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Fibromyalgia and several other conditions associated with autoimmune disorders. Most traditional Doctors, who treat patients with chronic pain, use narcotic painkillers, also known as Opioids. However many times patients become dependent on those types of medicines, which result in addiction and sometimes leads to death. Moreover, people are starting to think out of the box and try new methods and techniques to rid them of the danger of falling into the dreadful trap of Opioid dependency. Homeopathic Medicine is becoming more and more favorable for people who are willing to take some of the responsibility to search out for answers to the causes of their pain. "Most pain is caused from inflammation," said Cathy Uhl, CNSP at Nutrition World in Cabot, Arkansas. "Fish Oils are good for inflammation," said Uhl. When customers come into her store looking for relief for chronic pain, Uhl says she recommends, Turmeric, (Curcumin). "If you want an actual homeopathic formula, then we would use Arnica Montana," she said. Uhl, agrees that there are other homeopaths that are just as good like, Rhus tox, which is good for chronic pain associated with arthritis. "Homeopathic is individualized," said Autumn Monk, who has been a practitioner of Homeopathic medicines over 25 years. "You look up the homeopathic remedy for whatever the illness is, that you are experiencing, then you look to the homeopathic remedies listed and read the symptoms," said Monk. "It's kind of like a self intuition," she said. "Then you pick out the best homeopath that best fits your symptoms." Monk says the best part about homeopathic medicine is that you do not have to worry about side affects. "If it's something you need, it's going to do something," said Monk. According to Monk, taking the right homeopaths can lead to positive results as quickly as within 24 hours. "That's how you know the homeopath is doing something. Within twenty-four hours something changes. Your pain is different. It's maybe more localized, or less in one area. It changes somehow so you know something, is changing. You know you are on the right track," said Monk. Monk says on the other hand, if the homeopath does not do anything within the 24-hour period then you should go back to the drawing board researching more about your illness. Monk says homeopath is not the same as taking prescription medication. "It's not a night and day difference where it just turns it off immediately after you get enough of it in you to create that pain block," says Monk. "Homeopath doesn't work like that. It works sudden in time", she said. Monk recommends a variety of homeopaths for chronic pain that include, Magnesium, and Probiotics for the overall health of individuals with chronic pain. Moreover, she recommends that individuals who suffer from chronic pain associated with Spondylitis use Arsenicum Album to relieve the burning and needle like pain. Homeopaths come in the form of some type of pellet or sublingual drops according to, Monk who also emphasizes the importance of staying consistent when taking the homeopaths. "I found the best way to have someone take it is by putting it in their water and sipping on it all day because it turns the water into that homeopath', said Monk. Monk believes as people rule out the fact that prescription drugs are not always the ultimate answer. They are not healed of their issues ultimately. "They are still having issues and so at some end of that spectrum, that person is going to embrace an idea to try something else because what they are currently doing and continuing to do is clearly not working", she said. "It's like the explanation of insanity. Keep doing the same thing over again but expecting different results." The beauty of Homeopathy is you can try it and it can’t hurt. "It's not like taking prescribed medicine where as you may be unknowingly allergic to that particular medicine and have a reaction to it or in some known cases, die. Homeopathic remedies cannot do any damage. If it is something you need, it does help you. If it is something you do not need, it does not hurt you."
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Mr. Tony Williams and the Stanton Diner Teenage Jazz Band, who's leader had invested much of his time and money into artists such as, Grover Washington Jr., along with other musicians from German Town. "We were all between the ages of 14 and 18", said Kim. "And that's when a different class became a part of my life at 16. And I worked every weekend while going to Trenton Central High". Kim said she even missed her High School Prom that year because she chose to sing in Philadelphia that weekend. "I kind of regret I missed that experience though, she said through her chuckles."But that was the choice", she said. That trip to Philadelphia led Kim on a three month tour to Singapore. After touring Singapore, Kim said the band returned back to the United States. "I did a couple records with, Philadelphia International", she said. "Things weren't working so well. The group was kind of slow, records were slowing down", she said. Some of Kim's influence came from great artists like,Donna Summer and Whitney Houston, who sadly passed away on Kim's birthday. Just when she thought her singing career was at a halt, Kim received a telephone call offering her an amazing opportunity to travel abroad, and of course she took it, straight to France. That is where she met her first husband and got married. After a decade long marriage that sadly ended, Kim continued to stay in Paris and traveled to and from Italy to perform as well as other various places like, Hawaii, Marrecessh Morracco, Tel Aviv and Dubai. More often, Kim performed at private affairs in London. Kim met her second husband on a plane traveling back to Italy to perform. After talking to him for three straight months in French, she was hooked. Kim has performed with several musicians throughout Paris and France, along with lead orchestras. She has focused more on producing her own music than music of other people. Although she admits she has been a bit silent recently, she does have projects in the works. She sings fluently in French and Italian and says she fills gifted to be able to communicate through her songs. "Because I sing in French and Italian too, when I take them to a 'Kimberly Show Evening', I take them through Gospel, I take them through also a traditional song, a song in French and Italian to let them know that I can also communicate the music to them through their language. And I take them to the Whitney and to the Tina side". Kim performs Tina Turner's "Simply The Best" with, F. Fattizzo band -Premio Mediterraneo in 2006
Kim gives her mother much credit and respect for being one of her biggest supporters throughout her singing career. "She looks at me and she says, mmm, I made you, so I know what you're made of". Kim sings one song, "Sur Les Musique Noire" in two different languages, French and English. Although she sings it to perfection, Kim says it wasn't easy learning the song. "It was very difficult, but because I studied French in high school and Douglas College, made learning my songs easier", she said. Here Kim sings the same song in English What is next for Kimberly Covington? "Working with honest people who know how to get the job done. I speak three languages, I would love to share my mother country USA with Italy & France. What will happen? God Knows. I will step out on faith", said Kim. One things is for certain, Kim will always honor and glorify God in all that she pursues and achieve. "It has been a long road, changing countries. If God had told me the future I would have locked myself in a closet and said, I can't do this! How great God is. So smart not to tell us the journey before we trust him and jump out on faith", said Kim. Kim performing at: Concerto Gospel in memoria di S.S. Papa Giovanni Paolo II with the Brotherhood Gospel Choir.
Keith said going to Asia and spending time in Tokyo was an eye opening experience. “To see something different, to smell something different, to feel something different, this was total alienated" he said. "But it was beautiful at the same time because these people are very warm and kind," he added. After returning to America he continued to gig up and around California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington State, which also landed the opportunity to work in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, which became home base for a few years before returning back to Asia to work the club scene and the USO, PACAF tours for the American Armed Forces. Although he did not speak or understand the language, Keith said he communicated with the Japanese people through music. He said the music is what saved his life. “It kept me off the streets gave me something nice to give to somebody whose world is totally different then mine, who dress totally different then I do,” he said. Keith says the Japanese embrace R & B, Funk and Soul music. “If there’s anything you want, old R & B music, old soul music and you can’t find it in the United States, I guarantee you, you will find it here for sure,” said Keith. “They really appreciated the music we did back then.” However, Keith says, the Japanese view American music much differently now. “I can’t say it’s sad, because that’s just the way it became, but it’s not like it was back in the day where record companies or the artists themselves nurtured what they did, took pride in what they did, and practiced and rehearsed, then went out there and entertained folks and was satisfied,” said Keith. “These days it’s much different.” Keith has performed with many great artists in the past such as Mr. Wanya Morris (boyz to Men), Ashanti, Mariah Carey, Rebbie Jackson, The late Mr. Ollie Woodson (Temptations), Mr. Bobby Taylor (founder of the Jackson Five), and a slew of local artist in Tokyo like,Glynis Martin Argie Phine, Davinchio,Keith R. Haines,Chizuko, Yoshihiro and, The Gospel Truth Sangers. Keith now lives in Tokyo and continues to tour Japan and throughout Asia.
Factors Influencing The Rate Of Adoption in Arkansas, An Angel's Choice Adoption Agency continues to unite families through its' private agency. Michelle Oglesby, Owner and Operator of the adoption agency says she has united five families with new born babies since April of this year, making that a total of 24 since her business opened. Oglesby shares a heart warming story of how two birth mothers ended up having their babies on the same day at the same time, making two couples very happy. photo: courtesy of Michelle Oglesby
Department of Human Services. There are only a few private adoption agencies in Arkansas. However the evidence is in the numbers and by them you can clearly see that there is a great need for more. Many couples and individuals are still searching for children within the United Sates and internationally to adopt. Although there has been a reported increase in the number of women desiring to adopt in the United States, that is not the case in Arkansas. The number of children placed in permanent homes there has declined nearly 50% since 2002 In 2008, Arkansas approved a legislative measure meant to prevent gay couples from adopting or raising children. This legislation had an overwhelming impact on adoptions. Unknowingly the measure prevented unmarried cohabitating couples from adopting or fostering children. Many believed this was because of Arkansas’ strong disapproval to the candidacy of future President Barrack Obama. The Arkansas Chapter Of The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit on behalf of dozens of families in a Pulaski County Circuit Court disputing the new ban. Michelle Oglesby, Adoption Coordinator – Owner and Operator of An Angel's Choice Adoption Agency located in Sherwood, Arkansas was placed in foster care, along with her twin brother, at 13 months before being adopted. She and her brother were adopted. This inspired her to choose a career in adoption placement.
Currently there are 4900 children waiting to find foster homes in Arkansas. “We lack homes, beds, and people willing to help,” said Dawn Scott of KTHV11 News in a KTVH11 Special: Foster Care Crisis that aired May 26th to bring awareness to this problem. Oglesby says her mission is to fight to help pregnant women make the right choice. “We work with birth moms that are seeking to make a plan of adoption when they realize they cannot parent their child,” said Oglesby. “Instead of having a client relationship, we have a personal relationship that we get to know the birth mom, love on them, care about them, encourage them and help them through the adoption process,” she said. Some women frown upon adoption. “Many women have the misconception that adoption means foster care,” said Oglesby. It is much harder to find a family to foster a child than it is to adopt because of the way fostering is viewed over adoption. Some fear they will become too attached to a foster child knowing that it is only a temporary setting, while others take into consideration like what the child's prior life was like. Although there are several adoption agencies listed with local numbers in Arkansas, Oglesby said these agencies are physically located in Texas, Iowa, and Utah. “If there’s more local adoption agencies to help fight against abortion I think the decision of having an abortion will change,” said Oglesby. Oglesby says there is a definite need for more adoption agencies in Arkansas. She says that one way of getting information about her agency to the women facing the unplanned pregnancy is to stand in front of the Little Rock Family Planning Services Center and tell the women about the option of adoption. Aneisha Nolen is a Career Coach/Therapist for LAUNCH in Huntsville, Alabama. Although Nolen is not in direct contact with the adoption or foster care procedures in Arkansas she does work closely in her state with organizations affiliated with the two and agrees there is a misconception between adoption and foster care and, offer an explanation of the differences between the two. Nolan says one program she has seen become very successful in her town of Huntsville, is called RiahRose Home for Children Inc.. A program created based on a philosophy by the woman who created it was established in 2008 with the intent to ease the hardship many teenagers experience when they are left to care for the child on their own. Originally created as a program for teens, RiahRose now assist mothers beyond the teenage years. Nolan believes programs like this one could be just as successful in Arkansas. Oglesby believes children’s waiting for adoption in the State system is prolonged because private adoption agencies are prohibited from working with the Arkansas Division of Children and Family Services. Oglesby said she would like to see both agencies work together in an effort to decrease the number of children without homes by finding forever families for all of them. “If we gave that mother who has lost her child to the system because of something she did, an option to place her child up for adoption, she would at least know that there is a greater likelihood that her child is in a stable environment. She would not have to worry about her child being tossed from family to family, which is often what happens to children in foster care,” said Oglesby. There are currently 777 foster children awaiting adoption in Arkansas. There are on an average 30-40 abortions performed at Little Rock Family Services each week. There are few programs in Arkansas that assist children in the foster care system and fewer programs to educate women about Family Planning. Arkansas has the largest surgical abortion clinic, located in Little Rock, where up to thirty to forty abortions can be performed in one day, and in many cases it is the only solution that many women in Arkansas feel they have. Therefore there remains a crisis where the children are concerned. Protesters like Mary Pate says she is saddened to see the number of girls that go into the Little Rock Family Planning Services center where up to 40 abortions are performed a week. "With news laws that were passed in the last session, there are improved informed consent laws. They are supposed to get information about the risk, they are supposed to tell them about their options, including adoption and point them to different facilities that can help them, “ said Pate. Some women who find themselves in a situation where they are facing an unplanned pregnancy may want to choose adoption as their alternative but may not know how to go about it. Agencies like, An Angel's Choice Adoption Agency are there to help and assist these women through the entire adoption process. "With the current way adoptions are done the birth mother can choose who they want to be their babies adoptive parents," said Oglesby. “We’ve been in business since three years. And since that time we have placed 19 babies in loving homes,” said Oglesby. The main requirement needed to acquire a license to adopt is to have a Home Study performed with a Social Worker. A valuable resource center available to pregnant women and is opened for services daily is, the Arkansas Pregnancy Resource Center, located directly across the street from the abortion clinic. Nicole Lashbrook is the Executive Director of the center and says they welcome in women who suspect that they are pregnant and offer free services for pregnancy confirmation and to inform them of their pregnancy options by doing a free pregnancy options consultation. The resource center is a great place for women who are pregnant and wish to keep their baby because the center provides a variety of services, including information on adoption. However, with only a few private adoption agencies in now in Arkansas there is a much greater need for more. Fewer adoption agencies exist now because many have shut their doors or have been forced to because of criminal activity. Shara Rickett said her first adoption agency experience became a nightmare due to some of these criminal acts. "Back in 2004 my husband and I decided to start a family. We went through infertility for about four years. And then, finally decided in 2007 that we wanted to proceed through adoption," said Shara. Ricketts said she and her husband consulted with several adoption agencies before settling on one. "We ended up with a Christian agency we thought was great and wonderful. So in 2007 we signed on with this agency, got a home mortgage loan, and paid them a significant amount of money," said Shara. The Ricketts paid $24,000 to the agency. That amount of money was supposed to cover the cost of the entire adoption, according to Shara. However things didn't quite turn out that way. The Ricketts were basically scammed by this agency, no longer in business and unreachable for comment. Nonetheless, things did eventually turn out great for the Ricketts. They took an unconventional route and ended up with two beautiful daughters, from two separate adoptions. Rhonda Miller's adoption story is different than Shara's. She, an African American woman in her forties, with no children, adopted a beautiful African American baby who's mother was in her early teens. Although she had to do a home study, Miller said her experience was fairly easy. "I knew the family and heard about the young lady being pregnant. So I did the Home Study and that was it. That's all I had to do," said Miller. Miller did not wish to reveal too much of her story because her daughter is not aware of the adoption. She is only four years old. She was adopted at birth. These three beautiful innocent girls all got adopted by loving families. Yet, that does not put a dent in the number of children still waiting for that day to come. Arkansas is in much need of adoption agencies, but also more programs that will inform women of their options and on how the process of adoption has differed from the way it was decades ago. Also as stated earlier, seminars in family planning would probably help more young couples and young women who find themselves in an unplanned pregnancy become more mindful of the consequences that could have lasting affects on the child and the birth mother. While 777 children wait for the day to have a permanent home, law makers and legislators in Arkansas continue to battle child advocates and the concerned constituents on these important issues that are even more important to the emotional and physical health of what is the generations to come. Nevertheless, in light of what Arkansas is facing, help in not only necessary it seems imperative.