Making the Invisible Visible

What the Eyes Don't See is the title of Flint heroine Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha’s book about the Flint water crisis. It’s an appropriate title for a book where behind the scenes dealing resulted in thousands of children ingesting lead through their drinking water. However, it's also an accurate statement when it comes to children being poisoned by lead in communities like Grand Rapids that have long had safe drinking water.

We need to be able to see lead. The technology to measure lead in the environment has existed for decades.  This technology needs to be used to stop kids from hurting. Learn five specific ways to make invisible lead hazards visible.

 


Good Process + Great People = Healthy Kids

Did you know that the Healthy Homes Coalition is the number one source of referrals for the Get the Lead Out!  home repair program? It’s no surprise given the expert work of Jackie Hernandez, our Community Connections Coordinator.  

Executive Director Paul Haan will tell you it is Jackie Hernandez, our Community Connections Coordinator, is making it happen. “Jackie is unapologetic in her passion for helping kids and families succeed. Whether it’s her role as a Godfrey Lee school board member or her work at Healthy Homes, Jackie is 100% prepared to take action for her community!”


Healthy Homes in the News

Parents, a Healthy Homes Coalition board member, and staff were all featured on a Michigan Radio news story. We are sharing it here in case you missed it.

In the words of one of Healthy Homes’ newest board members, grandparent Lisa Matthews, "“People think (lead) is a small problem, but it’s a very big problem. I know it takes time to do something about it … I’m just sayin’ what are we going to do now?”

Healthy Homes is eager to begin working with the City and community partners to implement the solutions recommended in this report.


Spotlight: Lisa's Peer Education visits take off!

Lisa Matthews' reputation as a connected community member precedes her—she has helped her neighbors access and navigate area resources for years.  Lisa dedicates her time to a lot of important community work. One priority is providing her neighbors with lead education visits. She has been instrumental in helping the peer education group she is a member of complete 44 peer-to-peer lead education visits in a matter of months.


Seven Equity Impacts Related to Childhood Lead Poisoning

Equity Analysis of Lead Policies Consensus Conference in Chicago identified seven equity impacts related to children being exposed to lead.


Parents win BIG Victory!

On Thursday, April 25, the Kent County Board of Commissioners approved funding for two staff positions to investigate homes that are lead-poisoning children. Landlords who fail to act to be held accountable.


Let's Double-Down for Children with Asthma Like Louian

Little Louian's recently renovated home was in good condition, yet there were still things about the home environment that triggered Louian's asthma. Things had gotten so out of control that Louian ended up in the emergency room four times in a year. Healthy Homes provided Louian's mom with the knowledge, skills, and tools she needed to take action.

But this is just one of many families in need of support. Asthma attacks are the leading reason kids are going to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital’s emergency room.  We need to do more to keep children like Louian from hurting, and we can with your help.


Healthy Housing Goes Global

​In November of 2018, the World Health Organization stepped firmly into the healthy housing world when it released its WHO Housing and Health Guidelines. While local conditions are different all over the world, the strategies WHO suggests are universal and certainly apply to Grand Rapids.


Alex Markham: Parent Leader and Super Volunteer

Here at Healthy Homes, we have a small, but mighty volunteer force. And, possibly no volunteer is more known around the offices as a go-to helper than Alex Markham. She has been a very regular giver of time, talent, and passion over the past three years, and we are thankful to have her as part of the team.


Peer Educators Connect with their Community to Educate Neighbors About Lead

This fall, Healthy Homes is starting a new lead education program to help any local family who wants to learn more about lead, and how to manage lead hazards in their home.


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