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Literacy program for children gains popularity in Colorado health clinics

This summer, 1 million brand-new books will be given to children during health clinic visits across the United States. The goal is to hook kids under age 5 on a lifelong passion for books and create a solid foundation for reading success in elementary school.

But the 20-year-old program has another fringe benefit: The parents of Colorado kids who get a book during their checkups are more likely to make sure their children regularly visit the doctor, a survey of program participants shows.

My Family’s Experience Riding the Colorado MS 150

“How’s it going?” I asked my husband over the phone. “Great,” he answered. “Unbelievable actually. The boys are riding really strong and everyone we see is so super, so supportive.”

It was the fourth weekend in June and my husband and our two sons, ages 14 and 12, had just finished the first day of the 2011 Colorado MS 150, riding just shy of 75 miles on their road bikes.

“Are you okay?” I asked, hearing his voice catch a little. “Yes,” he laughed. “I’m just a little choked up. Our youngest son had a hard time getting up the hill by Horsetooth Reservoir,” he explained, “and when he got to the top, these women rode up behind us and congratulated him. This happened all day long. You can’t believe how friendly everyone is.”

The Gleaning of Denver: Pick Fruit and Help Those in Need!

Did you know there are hundreds of fruiting vines and trees in public spaces of the Denver Metro area and that most of the fruit produced by those plants, thousands of pounds of fruit, goes unused and left to rot? Neither did I!

A new project here in Denver called The Gleaning of Denver, a partnership of Slow Food Denver, History Colorado, is on a mission to harvest that delicious fruit at the peak of freshness, preserve it and give it to those in need.

Get your kids involved with these volunteer opportunities

As a child, I can remember my mother saying to me, “You just don’t know how good you have it.” Yet, even with these words echoing softly in my head, it took many years for me to understand just how blessed I was.

We all want our children to be grateful, compassionate and understanding, but teaching these traits to young children is often easier said than done.

That’s where volunteering comes in. By empowering children to mobilize and help out their fellow citizens, we can begin to teach them the importance of helping others.

Study finds fewer newly homeless in Denver, but more are families

The number of newly homeless people has dropped significantly over the past two years in metro Denver, but an increasing number are adults with children, according to the 10th Homeless Point-in-Time Study, conducted on Jan. 24, 2011, by the Metropolitan Denver Homeless Initiative.

In 2011, the number of newly homeless — which means homeless for the first time and for less than one year — was nearly 24 percent, down from about 45 percent from 2009.

“Our theory is that

Ministries, non profits rally for International Children’s Day

Christian ministries Stand4Kids and India Transformed!(formerly UEMI) are sponsoring Global Kidz Day to celebrate International Children’s Day Wednesday to provide Denver families with an opportunity to learn about helping children around the world and locally.

Nonprofit organizations dedicated to easing children’s suffering, including Compassion International, Encompass, Food for the Hungry and Women of Vision, will host booths with educational materials and activities, such as henna painting, creating a mural for the United Nations, purchasing mosquito nets for children at risk from malaria.

Global Kidz Day will be held 4-7 p.m. Wednesday on the lawn of St. John’s Lutheran Church and School, 700 S. Franklin St.

Win 15 Passes to the Colorado Music Festival’s Young People’s Concert!

Are you:
1) A mom?
2) Got friends?

If so, round ‘em up for this very cool contest. The Colorado Music Festival is giving away 15 passes for you and your friends to attend their Young People’s Concert “Beethoven Lives Upstairs” on either June 25 or 27, 2011 at 10 a.m.

Not familiar with the Colorado Music Festival & Rocky Mountain Center for Musical Arts (CMF & RMCMA) 2011 Summer Education Programs? Allow me to familiarize you. This great program is designed to connect kids from ages 3 to 18 to

Learning Small Ways to Make a Big Difference with Child Hunger at Food Bank of the Rockies

I’ve suffered through enough diets to have a small idea of what hunger feels like.

Many people don’t have a choice. One out of eight Coloradoans live with hunger every day and don’t know where their next meal is coming from. Forty-two percent are children under 18 years old.

A handful of Mile High Mamas and their kids learned these sobering statistics as we toured the 106,000-square foot Food Bank of the Rockies. The food bank services a staggering 1,100 agencies that include local food pantries, churches, and Boys and Girls Clubs in Northern Colorado and the entire state of Wyoming.

That is a whole lot of hunger…and need.

But there was also a lot of hope. The

Vaccination education: know your options

The first vaccine was brought to the U.S. in 1800 according to historyofvaccines.org, and now, more than 200 years later, we have more vaccines than we can count on two hands.

Many of us, myself included have received vaccines or painfully watched our children receive shots with no questions asked. But should we be asking questions?

Vaccinations have become a controversial issue in

Mama Goes to Mom Congress–An Insider’s Look

This year I began my education activism in earnest. My tipping point was when my youngest daughter’s school defended their worksheet-based, everyone does the same thing, curriculum. After being rebuffed by the school, I used my blog to express my feelings. And, I’ll tell you – that got their attention, even though that was not my intention, and the attention was not positive. As a result, I felt helpless to make positive change, and I didn’t know what to do differently.

So, it was with enormous anticipation that I attended Parenting Magazine’s second Mom Congress on Education and Learning, representing Colorado. I wondered, about making change in the school system. I wanted to know how do I stand up for my kids? And, is it possible to do it without being labeled a trouble maker? Or “that” mom?

So last week, Mom Congress brought together 51 amazing mom-delegates from all over the country, each passionate about different aspects of education – some bullying, some