The Links,focuses on providing a range of innovative, substantive and sustainable Pre-K-16 programming which contributes proven results to key educational or social/community issues. We seek to step in and serve when, unfortunately, children are growing up without the guidance and support of a caring, responsible adult. Research shows mentoring decreases the likelihood that young people will engage in harmful behaviors, while improving the chances that they will attend school regularly and improve academically. Mentoring is a structured and trusting relationship that brings young people together with caring adults who offer guidance, support and encouragement aimed at developing the skill set and character of the men-tee.
NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL TRENDS AND SERVICES
In National Trends and Services,the Links focuses on eliminating disparities to reduce barriers to services through leadership, education, and service. The mission of this facet is to empower the membership to effectively empower the various communities served.
The Links, has a mission through its Global Trilogy of International Trends and Services, Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), and the Signature Program, “Education Across the Miles” to expand the global platform for programs designed and developed to service the educational, health and cultural needs of people of African descent throughout the world. Seizing the opportunity to provide World Class Leadership, Friendship and Services, the National Legislative Issues and Public Affairs Committee launched the beginning of a yearlong Darfur National Letter Writing campaign at the area conference in Oklahoma City Oklahoma.
The campaign is a call for advocacy and action to end the genocide, effectuate positive change, restore and rebuild the lives of Darfur men, women and children. We will continue this campaign to influence and pressure the Sudanese Government to accept a peace agreement and petition the President of the United States and other policy and decision makers to be a leader in the protection of human rights in Darfur and to impose strong, strict and effective sanctions against the Sudanese Government. As a part of this initiative, the local chapter will endeavor to provide education to its membership and the communities of ongoing conditions in Darfur.
In keeping with the our traditional legacy of “International Trends and Services” our young ladies helped design, produce and sell laminated bookmarks at various art shows and festivals during the summer months and was able to contribute well over $300 to aid the disaster victims of the hurricane tragedy in Haiti.
The Links,has a strong and rich record of support for the performing and visual arts, especially where it focused on the presentation of artists of color. The chapter participated in "Operation Christmas Child" which is a project providing shoe boxes stuffed with personal items and school supplies for underprivileged children in countries throughout the world. This year our young ladies are involved in an additional Christmas art project making pillows as gifts for Christmas using leftover patches from their quilting project. Continuing the goal of "Leading With Excellence Serving With Grace" the chapter members donated food and funds to the local pantry and soup kitchen Family & Service Agency. We have included "The Pantry” as a friendship project this year. In addition, the chapter participated with the central area in providing funds to HBCU. (Historically Black Colleges and Universities)
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
There has been an increase in the prevalence of cardiovascular disease and stroke in ethnic communities. Obesity, diabetes and physical inactivity are all risk factors that can be modified. African-American women are more likely to die from breast cancer and early detection would allow for effective treatment and cure. We will educate members about healthy lifestyles and disease prevention to ensure that we become models of the health behavior we ourselves hope to promote in our communities.
The areas of emphasis are cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, and organ, tissue and blood donation. All health-related programs will find a home within the this facet. This includes our signature programs: Heart-links, Linkages to Life, and Walk for Healthy Living , as well as the National Childhood Obesity Initiative, oral health, brain health initiatives, and the Susan G. Komen for the Cure national partnership.
Black Americans' lives are being cut disgracefully short. More than 40 million Black Americans suffer from health problems that are killing them faster and earlier than their Caucasian counterparts. In a country where the average life expectancy is 78, the average life span of Black Americans is just 70 years. As a result, Black America ranks well below 100 of the world's nations when it comes to longevity.
Given that America has the most expensive and arguably the most technologically advanced health care system in the world, these statistics are very alarming. But we're not just talking about shorter lives. Since life expectancy is a measure of the overall status of a population's health, we're talking about compromised lives as well.
The health problems that cause this lower life expectancy disable many times more people than the actual number killed. Four out of five stroke victims, for example, go on to live for years with severe disabilities. The same holds true for patients with end-stage kidney failure who require dialysis. Strokes and kidney disease are of specific concern to the Black American community. You can find Dr. Neravetla's book "Salt: Black America's Silent Killer online and at many national book stores.
Our Sister Link Lu Dale, Vice Mayor of Huber Heights Ohio is recognized for her dedicated services to Ohio families who have loved ones with profound developmental disabilities or complex needs presented by the Coalition To Save The DC’s