Hearts & Minds - Information for ChangeSM
Creative Ideas for
Here are some of the many ways you can use these ideas:
- Brainstorm the problems in your own community and develop practical
- Inspire and encourage yourself and your colleagues by the example of
others who effectively faced similar problems.
- Save time and energy with ideas that have already been tested and
- Connect to the growing network of concerned individuals and
organizations who recognize our problems and would rather work than weep.
Child Identification Tag Authorizes
Emergency Medical Treatment
Businessman George Wager designed a tiny
identification tag to be fastened to a child's shoe or clothing. The tag is non-erasable
and waterproof. It carries his/her address and other information including a parent's
signature authorizing medical treatment in emergencies. (Minors suffer more than 20
million injuries annually, 8,000 of them fatal.) Without a legal guardian's permission,
doctors may withhold or delay needed treatment.
There was little acceptance for
the Wager Lifesaver until 1986, when Readers' Digest published "Have You
Tagged Your Kid Today?" Then, in less than a year, 50 million tags were distributed
by Johnson & Johnson with children's medicine, Hush Puppies with children's shoes, and
others like Coca-Cola, Kroger Supermarkets, Nordstrom's and the Minneapolis Police.
SOURCE: "Have You Tagged Your
Kids Today?" 8/86 Reader's Digest, Pleasantville, NY 10570,
Local Media Promotes City's Pregnancy
New Haven, Connecticut had the worst infant
mortality rate in the nation (one out of every 59 babies died within the first year of
life). Because of late entry into prenatal care, in 1986 the New Haven Foundation and the
City of New Haven created a Special Commission on Infant Health. A Pregnancy Health-line
was established to encourage poor women to apply for free pregnancy tests, so they
can be directed to healthcare facilities that will assist them through pregnancy and
In 1990, the New Haven media
began a one-year public service advertising campaign encouraging use of the Pregnancy
Health-line. The campaign was sponsored by Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Connecticut,
Decker-Rickard (the ad agency who did the creative work), Gannett Outdoor and WTNH-TV 8.
The campaign included press coverage, public affairs programs, a booklet on pregnancy,
public service announcements three to five times a week, two 12' x 25' billboards per
month (in English and Spanish) and one 14 x 48 painted bulletin for the year.
SOURCE: Gannett Outdoor of
Connecticut, WTNH Channel 8, 119 Water SL, New Haven, CT 06511, 1-203-865-1177
Corporate Angel Network Flies Cancer
Patients to Hospitals
The Corporate Angel Network (CAN) matches cancer
patients traveling for treatment with empty seats in corporate jets. In the first six
years after its founding in 1981, the network enlisted 400 companies to fly 1,200 patients
(each with an accompanying family member) more than 2 million miles at no cost to the patients.
Founder Pricilla Blum, a former cancer patient, got the idea when attending a meeting of
the Connecticut division of the American Cancer Society.
SOURCE: 1/20/87 Womans Day, 1633
Broadway, New York, NY 10019, 1-212-767-6000
Woman Brings Animals to Sick, Handicapped
Nancy Stanley, a San Diego mother of two, created
TLZ (Tender Loving Zoo). She got the idea while working as a volunteer in the Los Angeles
Zoo, where she noticed how handicapped visitors responded eagerly to animals. After moving
to San Diego in 1982 she read an article about the beneficial effects animals can have on
patients. She began taking her pet poodle to the Revere Developmental Center for the
severely handicapped. Then she took $7,500 of her own money, bought a van, recruited
helpers, and persuaded a pet store to lend baby animals.
Soon requests for TLZ were
corning from schools, hospitals and convalescent homes all over the county, and Nancy had
to become a fundraiser to keep the project going. Most of the donations came from local
businesses in the form of cut-rate gasoline, free repairs on the van, office equipment,
T-shirts for her helpers and, of course, cash.
TLZ has grown to operate full
time with 48 volunteers and a 26-member advisory board. Each volunteer is responsible for
one animal and works with patients on an individual basis, encouraging them to relate to
the pet. Nancy has plans for similar organizations in other cities.
SOURCE: "When One
Volunteer Makes All the Difference," 11/5/85 Womans Day, 1633
Broadway, New York, NY 10019, 1-212-767-6000
| These are selections from a
booklet summarizing effective solutions for Health Care, one of 20 pamphlets in the
Community Action Network Solutions
Library. Each booklet has dozens of effective ideas.
Since 1985 CAN has been gathering information revealing what people are doing to solve the
problems that plague their communities.
Hearts and Minds and CAN
are two independent organizations that collaborate to help people help themselves and
others more effectively.
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