Bits 'n' Pieces

Children’s Village Sees First Patients

The new Cherese Mari Laulhere Children’s Village located on the campus of MemorialCare Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach opened its doors for patients Monday. This 80,000-sq. ft., four-story building houses a variety of medical and supportive care services under one roof, making the health care experience more convenient and efficient for thousands of children and their families across the region who need specialized pediatric care each year.

Many children have complex health conditions or may have more than one health issue, which previously required families to travel to various specialty medical offices scattered around Long Beach. Now, all the specialty care and services they need are centralized in the Children’s Village.

The Children’s Village is the only building of its kind in Los Angeles and Orange Counties with a one-stop-shop approach to outpatient specialty care for kids. In one kid-friendly location, families have access to a pharmacy, laboratory, imaging services, rehabilitation gyms, family resource center, education center and more.

Every member of the Children’s Village care team is specially trained to care for kids and teens and address their unique health care needs, including its roster of physicians that are expertly trained in more than 30 pediatric specialties, such as orthopedics, pulmonology and oncology.

Families can learn more about the Children’s Village by taking a virtual tour or by visiting millerchildrens.org/Village.

Bill Pearl Community Journalism Scholarship

The CSULB Department of Journalism & Public Relations has announced to its students the availability of a newly established scholarship endowed in honor of a Long Beach pioneer in community journalism.

“The Bill Pearl Community Journalism Scholarship” has been established in honor of Pearl to acknowledge his more than 20 years in providing insightful reporting on community issues as publisher of www.lbreport.com.

Due to the generous contributions of many people and matching funds provided by the Citizens About Responsible Planning (CARP), CSULB will utilize more than $14,000 beginning this spring to award a $1,250 scholarship to a student who has demonstrated an interest in pursuing community journalism and a commitment to the principles of democracy, citizen journalism and open government.

“The Bill Pearl Community Journalism Scholarship” is just one way of acknowledging Pearl’s on-going commitment to excellent community journalism. It is hoped that with continued contributions, this scholarship will be available for many years.

Community members wishing to support this acknowledgement of Pearl’s contribution to Long Beach, should go to: www.billpearlscholarship.com.

Students Offer Free Virtual Tax Preparation

More than 50 English and Spanish speaking California State University, Long Beach accounting students, who are Internal Revenue Service certified, are providing free tax preparation assistance to families who make $57,000 or less, disabled people, the elderly, students, non-residents and individuals with limited English proficiency.

The free service is part of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance clinic (VITA), which is an IRS-sponsored program.

Last year, student-volunteers filed state and federal tax returns that combined totaled more than $1 million in refunds.

To file taxes electronically on a married-filing-joint tax return, both spouses must be present to sign the required forms.

Make a virtual appointment at https://www.csulbbap.com/vita.

Affordable Healthy Food

The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has awarded contracts to 16 organizations to provide food and nutrition-related services and support to populations experiencing high levels of food insecurity and/or barriers to healthy food access as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Activities funded to take place through March 20, include food distribution events intended to reach neighborhood residents in need, while others are working specifically with pre-identified “high priority” populations. To learn more about the specific community nutrition projects and enroll in services, please visit the Health Department’s website.

These programs are made possible by Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding. The city received $40 million in CARES Act funding to support relief and community recovery and resiliency, of which the Long Beach City Council allocated $3 million to support projects aimed at increasing food security, including more than $500,000 to organizations to provide food and nutrition-related services and support to communities impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Aquarium Announces Scholar Recipients

The Aquarium of the Pacific announced the recipients of its African American Scholar Program. The award ceremony will take place at 3:30 p.m. during the aquarium’s annual African-American Festival, which will be held virtually on Feb. 27.

“According to the most recent research from the National Science Foundation from 2017, only three African American students were awarded Ph.D. degrees in the United States in the marine sciences in an entire year. With that perspective, we believe that this program can have an important impact on increasing diversity in this field. We hope to bring meaningful opportunities in the marine sciences to African American students and to bring diverse minds to solving the issues facing our planet,” said Anthony Brown, Aquarium of the Pacific CFO and committee lead on the program.

The applications were submitted by students who demonstrated a commitment to studies related to careers in the aquarium field, including ocean education, animal husbandry, water quality, building maintenance or facilities, microbiology and business management. Award recipients were selected by a committee made of aquarium staff and members of the community. Each of the recipients will receive $10,000 and will also be invited to participate in presentations, meetings and other activities at the Aquarium during the duration of the program.

This scholarship is funded through donor support. You can support the initiative by making a donation on the aquarium’s website. Thanks to a generous matching gift from an anonymous donor, gifts will be matched up to $10,000.

Program Recipients:

Kelsy Deckard is an undergraduate student at California State University, Monterey Bay. Deckard is working with marine science professors on research and has an interest in coral reef conservation. This recipient’s goal is to be a mammologist (expert working with marine mammals).

Katherine Hannibal is an M.S. candidate in biology at California State University, Northridge and has a B.S in marine biology from the University of Rhode Island. Hannibal is interested in understanding the anthropogenic effects on nearshore environments, specifically focusing on how algal invasive species impact invertebrate life histories. Hannibal hopes that their research serves as a catalyst for real change in environmental policy and promotes broader ecological understanding. After earning a Ph.D., the recipient’s goal is to become an outreach and education director, promoting STEM and environmental awareness to underserved youth.

Newton Zachary Hood is a doctoral student in ecology and evolutionary biology at University of California, Irvine. Hood has an M.S. in biology from California State University, Fullerton, a B.A. in anthropology from the University of Illinois, and numerous awards, teaching positions, presentations and volunteer work related to marine sciences. This recipient’s goal is to contribute to research on abalone conservation and recovery.

Candice Mitchell is an undergraduate student studying marine and coastal science at the University of California, Davis and has an associate’s degree in business administration and economics from Berkeley City College. Mitchell participated in the Coastal and Marine Sciences Institute mentorship program. This recipient’s goal is to combine a passion for caring for animals with academic training provided by the recipient’s major, marine and coastal science and invest in a career in conservation and restoration efforts of marine animals and habitats.

Frederick Nelson is a doctoral student studying ecology at the University of California, Davis. Nelson has a B.S. in biology from Howard University and associate’s degree from Houston Community College. Nelson is a recipient of a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and has experience in research and educational outreach in marine sciences. This recipient’s goal is discovering and addressing how aquatic organisms are thriving or surviving in certain environments and keeping research, education and mentorship at the forefront of the recipient’s professional goals. Nelson aims to achieve this through doctoral research and a post-doctoral career.

Leslie Nguyen is an undergraduate student in marine biology at California State University, San Jose. Nguyen volunteers in animal husbandry at the Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito. This recipient’s goal is to be in a position that further enhances skills in research, animal husbandry and working with children.

Jahlen Pinelo is a microbiology student at University California, Riverside and has an associate’s degree in biological sciences from Antelope Valley College. Pinelo has experience in lab work, STEM tutoring, volunteering and research related to marine sciences. This recipient’s goal is to earn a Ph.D. in environmental microbiology and work with other researchers in exploring ways naturally occurring microbes can be used to battle the rising CO2 levels, effluent and microplastics problems in marine environments.

Danielle Sandoval is an undergraduate student in marine biology with a chemistry minor at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). Sandoval’s background includes several honors and awards, research and training in marine sciences. This recipient’s goal is to be an environmental research scientist in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Mid-Continental Ecology Division (MED) research facility, focusing on the safety of chemicals and preventing pollution from entering ocean and freshwater ecosystems.

Elishebah Tate-Pulliam is a M.S. candidate in biology at CSULB and has a B.S. in biology with minor in comparative literature from CSULB. Tate-Pulliam has experience in research, lab work, volunteering and teaching related to marine sciences. Through research using Olympia oysters and eelgrass as part of a living shoreline restoration project, this recipient’s goal is to continue the collaboration between the CSULB wetlands teams and the Aquarium of the Pacific as well as to continue work with Orange County Coast Keeper to educate students in urban areas about the importance of wetlands and environmental awareness.

Ceyenna Tillman is an undergraduate student in marine biology at University of California, Santa Cruz. Tillman’s numerous honors, volunteering and research are related to marine sciences. This recipient’s goal is to earn a Ph.D. and to contribute to coral reef conservation.

Atlantic Ave. Open Streets

As part of the City of Long Beach’s ongoing effort to provide COVID-19 support to local businesses, installation has begun for an Atlantic Avenue Open Streets location, located between East Claiborne Drive and East Armando Drive, offering outdoor space for businesses to utilize for dining and other approved services.

Vehicular traffic is limited temporarily to one lane in each direction on Atlantic Avenue between East Claiborne Drive and East Armando Drive to accommodate the Open Streets location. Businesses will utilize sidewalks on the east side of Atlantic Avenue to expand business space. The west side of Atlantic Avenue will feature angled parking to increase parking spaces.

The Open Streets Program was approved by the Long Beach City Council in June 2020 in response to State Health Orders closing indoor dining and other services and industries due to COVID-19. To date, over 100 parklet locations have been installed throughout the city. Businesses interested in operating a temporary parklet or sidewalk dining space may submit a Parklet Application.

Nearby residents and businesses were notified of this project by door hangers and flyers. A community meeting was also held to gather feedback from residents and business owners.

The Atlantic Avenue Open Streets location will continue until outdoor physically-distanced services are no longer required. The location will be evaluated on a bi-weekly basis to continuously monitor traffic impacts and public safety. Possible modifications may be needed to address any specific issues during this pilot project.

Arbuckle Named HLC National Chairman

Barry Arbuckle, Ph.D., president and CEO of MemorialCare, a leading Southern California nonprofit integrated health system, has been named chairman of Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC), a national alliance of leading healthcare organizations from all health sectors.

Under Dr. Arbuckle’s leadership, MemorialCare – with over 200 sites of care and more than 12,000 employees – has experienced unprecedented growth and is considered an industry leader in evidence-based medicine, value-based provider networks and innovative partnerships. He is past chair of California Hospital Association, March of Dimes-California and Integrated Healthcare Association.

The coalition of chief executives from all American healthcare disciplines is the exclusive forum for U.S. healthcare leaders to jointly develop policies, plans and programs to achieve their vision of a 21st century healthcare system that makes affordable high-quality care accessible to all Americans. HLC members – hospitals, academic health centers, health plans, pharmaceutical companies, medical device manufacturers, laboratories, biotech firms, information technology companies, health product distributors and post-acute care and home care providers – advocate for measures to increase quality and efficiency of healthcare through a patient-centered approach.

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