Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Congress Screws VA

A little known program in the Veterans Administration is the Home Health Aide Services, or (HHA). This program is designed to keep aging Veterans out of more expensive Assisted Living facilities or Nursing homes.

Those veterans that live alone, have no care giver, are eligible for up to sixteen hours of home care that includes light house cleaning, bathing, meal cooking, laundry, etc.

I applied for this service and was sent a brochure outlining these benefits.The only requirement is that the veteran's health provider must recommend the vet and approve of the need. He did.

I then waited a month hearing from nobody. I called the Social Work Services at the Spokane, Washington VAMC. The person that I talked to said they were over capacity for the program. This didn't make any sense, due to the program outsourcing these services.

Finally I got a call back from the person in charge of that service. Joseph (509-434-7558). It seems the congress underfunded the program severely. While many are eligible, currently, 80 Vets including yours truly, are on a waiting list in just the Spokane region. Apparently someone on the program has to die for there to be an opening. I'm told one such person has been on the list for a year.

This program which guarantees home health care, is broke. Congress must pass an appropriation to reestablish the fund. If 80 are waiting just in Spokane, one wonders how many more around the country are in the same boat.

I contacted Congressman Raul Labrador's Meridian, Idaho office (208-888-3188) which was not aware of the problem. But they are now and will be lobbying for a cure. It wouldn't hurt to call your congress person to complain bout the problem and attempt to get enough members of congress interested and aware of this gap in benefits.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Christ the King Love Pantry

Flying under the radar, is a food bank that is very different than other community based organizations. The Love Pantry, operated by Christ The King Lutheran Church, aptly named since the food for the most part comes from the Christian love of the community from the congregation members. Over 4000 People have been served in the past year.

Fueled by volunteers: organizer Jim Preston and populated by the following: 
Dennis Lorenz,Darryl & Rita Miller,Lee Erwin,Jim & Colleen Preston,Lowell Nelson,Toby Heldreth,Tom Muhly,Candy and Larry Comer,Rosalie Williams,Rich & Annie Whipple,Tex Ritchie, and Dr. John Land. In addition, volunteer students from Lakes Middle School regularly volunteer.
In addition to the donations of their time at the Love Pantry, they can be seen weeding and cultivating
not to mention the harvesting the weekly  vegetables which go directly to the Thursday meetings of the pantry, which operates from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm every Thursday. Other than the many contributions that are given by the congregation, Winco Foods is a large contributor, as well as 
USDA and second harvest.

 Once a month, a program instituted by Dr. Land provides 10 family bags which hold only fresh foods and no  prepared ingredients.  They have the ingredients for a family from 4-6 along with directions on how to fix them. Recipes included.

This accomplishments several things. One, it encourages people to use fresh ingredients, rather than the more expensive frozen and canned foods that are loaded with preservatives and excessive salt. It provides ingredients and recipes for preparing a dinner for a family of 4-6.

It educates people on how easy it is to simplify the preparation for their family. An added benefit is that it encourages families to eat together, something that has been missing in many if not most families and used to be the glue that got the family together at least once a day.

Dr. Land, a transplanted Englishman refers back to Medieval strip gardens but for those of us that are old enough to remember, it was like the victory gardens of WW11. 250 years late for the revolution, he is still determined to make a difference. He has.

The services that the church provides are Heritage Health mobile medical services that visit every two weeks. Pastoral services are also available for those needing spiritual assistance by  Pastors Bob Sunquist, John Muhly and Deacon Larry Comer. The church is located at 1700 Pennsylvania, in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho


As I watched smoke roll in to Bayview Sunday, I wondered whether they were new fires or just wind direction change. I went to all of our local TV venues, only to find week-end specials. No bulletins or interrupted programing, just business as usual.

This morning however, banner headlines proclaimed three serious fires in our area.

One wonders that if Aliens were to arrive from outer space on a week-end if we would have to wait until Monday to find out.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Funding Request

From time to time I see a need and do my best to help. Such is the case today. I come to you seeking help for a woman who shall remain unnamed at her request.She labors daily helping the elderly with housekeeping and other personal needs.

Last fall's wind storm knocked down trees, killed the mobile home she lived in along with her car. She managed to find another car, but it needs tires and shocks. If we have a snowy winter, she will be forced to give up her vocation of helping the elderly. Helping others is her vocation. Now it is she that needs help.

I'm asking you to help if you are able. Please send checks payable to "Mr. Tire," and send them to me, Herb Huseland, PO Box 884, Bayview, ID 83803

Saturday, August 06, 2016


Has anyone but me noticed that Bonneville Power has stolen a full three inches of Lake Pend Oreille water all Summer?

Yes, they stopped filling the lake at 2062.32 instead of going to normal Summer level at 2062.5. These fractions are in tenths, which equates to a full three inches of surface water we didn't get this year.

One again, they are treating natural Lake Pend Oreille as a reservoir with which to do as they please.

Here is a link to the official level of the lake.