Tue01272015

Schools

MVLA revisits prospect of ninth-grade PE exemptions

MVLA revisits prospect of ninth-grade PE exemptions


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District Board of Trustees is scheduled to vote on a proposal to exempt ninth-grade student-athletes from taking PE. Students take part in a physical education class at Mount...

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Community

Midnight Express offers late-night rides from SF

Midnight Express offers late-night rides from SF


From Midnight Express Instagram
A group of millennial-aged Santas celebrating a night on the town prepare for a safe ride from San Francisco to their South Bay homes, courtesy of Cory Althoff’s new Midnight Express shuttle.

It’s no understatemen...

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Comment

More open than ever: Editorial

One of the Los Altos City Council’s objectives for 2015 is implementing an open-government policy. The title of the policy may be somewhat misleading, because it’s not as if the city has had a closed-government policy. But the new proposal goes beyon...

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Business

Cassidy Turley, DTZ plan to combine

Cassidy Turley, DTZ plan to combine


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Cassidy Turley, which has offices at 339 S. San Antonio Road, is combining with DTZ following its recent acquisition.

Commercial real estate services companies DTZ and Cassidy Turley have joined forces to operate as a sin...

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Books

Gawande's

Gawande's "Being Mortal" proves an important book on aging


Books about death and dying are usually not on my list of “must reads.”

I couldn’t resist, however, the best-selling “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” (Metropolitan Books, 2014) by Atul Gawande.

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People

JUDY HOFFMANN

JUDY HOFFMANN

Judy Hoffmann passed away unexpectedly October 17, 2014 in New York City. It was only fitting Judy would be traveling and enjoying special adventures in so many different places until the very end.

Judy has lived since 1969 in Los Altos with her h...

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Travel

Cuban photographer slated to appear at Foothill

Cuban photographer slated to appear at Foothill


Courtesy of Raúl Cañibano
Cuban photographer Raúl Cañibano is set to appear at Foothill College tonight. His work – including the image “Series: Guajira’s Land, Viñales, 2007,” right – is on display at the KCI Gallery t...

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Stepping Out

TheatreWorks launches '2 Pianos' in Mtn. View

TheatreWorks launches '2 Pianos' in Mtn. View


Suellen Fitzsimmons/Special to the Town Crier
Christopher Tocco stars in TheatreWorks’ “2 Pianos 4 Hands,” which opened last week.

TheatreWorks’ production of “2 Pianos 4 Hands” is scheduled to run through Feb. 15 at the Mountain View Center fo...

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Spiritual Life

Start something great by ringing in the new year with prayer

There is a tradition, which I’m told originates in the Midwest, that calls for people to pray in the new year. A few years ago, I was invited to a friend’s house and a number of people stayed up until midnight (approximately two hours pa...

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Magazine

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years


Courtesy of Christopher Stark
Homes on the St. Francis High School Women’s Club’s Christmas at Our House Holiday Home Tour showcase a variety of architectural styles.

The days grow short on sunshine but long on nostalgia as the holidays approach...

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Kiwanis Club chips in to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus worldwide


Photo By:
The Kiwanis Club of Los Altos has joined forces to help eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus by 2015. A woman in Ghana receives a tetanus shot to increase her chances of healthy future births.

A local community group is playing a role in erasing maternal and neonatal tetanus (MNT) worldwide.

Douglas Roberts, who serves as a director for the Kiwanis Club of Los Altos, said his organization is raising funds locally to help eradicate MNT as part of the Eliminate Project – an effort in partnership with Kiwanis International and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

The international organizations founded the project in 2011 with the goal of eliminating MNT in impoverished areas throughout the world by 2015. The effort means Kiwanis International must raise $110 million to fund the hiring of medical staffs and provide tetanus vaccinations to more than 100 million mothers and babies.

The local group serves as a “model club” for the global campaign, pledging at least $750 fundraised per member for an overall club goal of more than $20,000.

So far, the club has raised approximately $9,000 – which includes personal commitments of more than $1,000 each by four members.

Among other things, the club donates one vaccination – at a cost of approximately $1.80 per dose – for every Christmas tree sold each holiday season at its local tree lot to support the project.

“We do a lot of fundraising that brings in money here and there, but this is our big one,” Roberts said of his club, known for sponsoring Los Altos’ pet parade each year. “This (project) is important – we want people to patronize our (Christmas) tree lot every year.”

Roberts added that his club is currently creating partnerships with local nonprofit organizations for the effort, leading to approximately $1,000 in cash and pledges received thus far. In addition, the club recently pledged to raise $150 per month earmarked for meals provided at weekly club meetings – and paid for through membership dues – in favor of a monthly potluck.

“We’re committed to bringing our own lunch,” he said. “The money we save will go to Eliminate (Project). We’re scratching for every dollar we can.”

Eradicating MNT

According to UNICEF, MNT infections are common in regions where childbirth deliveries typically occur in unhygienic settings. Worldwide, one baby dies every nine minutes from MNT.

Infections are caused when tetanus spores – found in soil – come into contact with open cuts during birth, leading to heartbreaking and debilitating effects, including painful convulsions and sensitivity to touch and light.

“There are babies dying all the time and it’s a painful death,” said Roberts, a 10-year member of Los Altos Kiwanis. “In fact, it’s so painful that the mothers can’t even touch their babies – they can’t comfort them at all. Can you imagine? There are these unsanitary conditions where babies are born on a dirt floor, the umbilical cord gets cut and it picks up the bacteria. The only way to properly protect the mother and child is with this inoculation.”

To date, the international project has seen its fair share of early success, raising approximately $27 million in cash and pledges through February toward its overall goal. According to Kiwanis International, the effort has led to the elimination of MNT in nine countries – including seven in 2012 alone. Still, 30 countries remain where MNT is prevalent in the poorest communities.

Roberts said that while Christmas trees may be tough to come by in the spring, residents can contribute to the effort year round by donating through the Los Altos Kiwanis Club website.

“The (UNICEF) system is in place – they’ve done all the work creating connections in these countries. All they need now is the money to buy the vaccinations,” Roberts said. “They’re confident that they can eliminate this in the remaining countries in the world. … It’s a big deal.”

To donate or for more information, visit www.losaltoskiwanis.org. Donors can also send contributions to the Los Altos Kiwanis Foundation at PO Box 484, Los Altos 94023.

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