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Alzheimer's Outreach Center fundraiser to contribute to new building
Groundbreaking on new Alzheimer's Outreach Center facility expected next month

ALBANY — The Swinging ’60s Beach Blast, the annual blast from the past fundraiser conducted by the Alzheimer’s Outreach Center, will be held this year at The Bindery at Oakland on Sept. 6.

The focus of the Blast will be bringing in the financial resources to recover from the blow sustained during Hurricane Michael — a process that is leading toward a groundbreaking on a new building.

The fundraiser kicks off at 6:30 p.m. at The Bindery, located at 445 W. Oakland Parkway in Leesburg, and will feature the “Blast Band,” whose members volunteer their time by performing at the event each year.

The decorations at the dinner, like the music, will be consistent with the ’60s beach theme.

“The band is bigger and better,” Nancy Goode, development director for the center, said. “Everyone loves the beach, and everyone loves beach music.

“The people that attend this event are mostly baby boomers.”

The family of Margaret Jo Hogg, a retired teacher who is a former client of the the center, is the benefactor for the building itself. The Swinging ’60s Beach Blast is raising funds for the items that will go inside the building, such as furniture and equipment.

The permit and bidding processes are wrapping up for construction to begin on the building, which will be at 229 N. Jackson St. in Albany. A groundbreaking for the facility, expected to be 5,954 square feet, twice the size of the building on North Jefferson Street that was destroyed by the hurricane, is anticipated in mid-September.

Once the groundbreaking is held, construction is likely to take eight to 10 months.

Over the last several months, the remnants of the old building were demolished and a capital campaign has been ongoing to replace what was lost.

“The goal for the event is $30,000,” Goode said. “(The capital) campaign has gone quite well. The Albany community has really stepped up.”

Hogg was a teacher at Albany High School who taught Goode as well as Virginia Griffin, executive director at the center.

“She is still alive, but has dementia and used to come here,” Goode said. “They (the family) will pay for the building, whatever it costs.

“We will have enough space (in the new building) to double (our current client base).”

In addition to increased space, the North Jackson Street property will have a garden, which will be fenced in.

“We have already got people who want to memorialize people in the garden,” Goode said. “(Hogg) loved gardening and being outside.”

The overall goal for the capital campaign is $200,000, because the organization is essentially starting from scratch. It is halfway to its goal.

The center currently serves 22, and doubling that would require more staff. As it is, there is already a waiting list.

“We didn’t have the room over there (in the former building), and we don’t have the staff,” Goode said.

A number of tickets for the fundraiser have already been sold, so Goode is confident the agency’s goal will be reached.

“We have always sold it out,” she said.

“We don’t see it not happening this year.”

Even before construction, rooms in the new building have already been dedicated in memory of lost loved ones — but some opportunities to dedicate rooms remain.

And for Goode, as meetings with the architects — Yielding, Wakeford and McGee — take place, reality has begun to set in.

“As you talk about what you want, it gets exciting,” she said.

In the meantime, the center’s activities that include a support group, a movement toward making Albany businesses more dementia friendly and training events geared for those directly impacted by dementia, continue.

The dinner, dancing and live music on Sept. 6 will cost $40 before Friday, and $50 after that and at the door. The floor plan for the new building will be on display at the event.

Advanced notice is highly encouraged, as the center needs to provide a head count for the food. For more information, contact Goode at (229) 432-2705.


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The information you need on HPV

Deerfield-Windsor senior Yash Jani, who plans to become a medical doctor, offers insight on the HPV virus.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Yash Jani, a senior at Deerfield-Windsor School in Albany, spent part of his summer researching health-related issues that he expects to treat one day as a medical doctor.

Human papillomavirus, or HPV, is a virus that can cause skin warts, genital warts, and some forms of cancer. Human papillomavirus is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States with more than 200 variations, which can be subdivided into cutaneous or mucosal categories.

Although most infections are asymptomatic and appear to resolve spontaneously within a few years, prevalence of genital infection with any HPV type was 42.5% among United States adults ages 18 to 59 years during 2013-14. Persistent infection with some HPV types can cause cancer and genital warts. HPV types 16 and 18 account for approximately 66% of cervical cancers in the United States, and approximately 25% of low-grade and 50% of high-grade cervical intraepithelial lesions, or dysplasia.

HPV types 6 and 11 are responsible for approximately 90% of genital warts. Some health effects caused by HPV can be prevented by the HPV vaccines.

Human papillomaviruses

Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are small, non-enveloped, capsid viruses. HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection. HPV is a different virus than HIV and HSV (herpes).

— STD.gov.org

Spread of HPV

One can get HPV by having vaginal, anal or oral sex with someone who has the virus. It is most commonly spread during vaginal or anal sex. HPV can be passed even when an infected person has no signs or symptoms.

Anyone who is sexually active can get HPV, even if he or she has had sex with only one person. Persons also can develop symptoms years after having sex with someone who is infected. This makes it hard to know when anyone first became infected.

Health problems related to HPV

In most cases, HPV goes away on its own and does not cause any health problems. But when HPV does not go away, it can cause health problems like genital warts and cancer.

Genital warts usually appear as a small bump or group of bumps in the genital area. They can be small or large, raised or flat, or shaped like a cauliflower. A health care provider can usually diagnose warts by looking at the genital area.

Interactions between HIV and HPV

There is a “bidirectional epidemiologic interaction” between HIV and HPV infections.

HPV (the virus): About 79 million Americans are currently infected with HPV. About 14 million people become newly infected each year. HPV is so common that almost every person who is sexually active will get HPV at some time in their life if they don’t get the HPV vaccine. The prevalence of oropharyngeal human papillomavirus (HPV) is generally lower than that of anogenital HPV infection. In a study of 1,626 men ages 18-70 years (88 percent men who have sex with women only) without a prior history of HPV-associated disease and with a median follow-up of 13 months, 4.4 percent acquired an oropharyngeal infection with any HPV type, and 1.7 percent with an oncogenic HPV type.

Cancer and HPV: HPV can cause cervical and other cancers including cancer of the vulva, vagina, penis or anus. It can also cause cancer in the back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils

Cancer often takes years, even decades, to develop after a person gets HPV. The types of HPV that can cause genital warts are not the same as the types of HPV that can cause cancers.

There is no way to know which people who have HPV will develop cancer or other health problems. People with weak immune systems (including those with HIV/AIDS) may be less able to fight off HPV. They may also be more likely to develop health problems from HPV.

Ways to Avoid HPV-related complications

♦ Get vaccinated. The HPV vaccine is safe and effective. It can protect against diseases (including cancers) caused by HPV when given in the recommended age groups;

♦ CDC recommends 11- to 12-year-olds get two doses of HPV vaccine to protect against cancers caused by HPV;

♦ Get screened for cervical cancer. Routine screening for women aged 21 to 65 years old can prevent cervical cancer;

If you are sexually active:

♦ Use latex condoms the right way every time you have sex. This can lower your chances of getting HPV. But HPV can infect areas not covered by a condom – so condoms may not fully protect against getting HPV;

♦ Be in a mutually monogamous relationship – or have sex only with someone who only has sex with you.

— Cancer.gov

Ways to detect HPV

♦ In the United States, there are no Food and Drug Administration-approved tests clinically available to detect HPV infection of oropharyngeal, anal or male genital specimens. There are also no FDA-approved serological or blood tests to detect HPV infection.

♦ There are HPV tests that can be used to screen for cervical cancer. These tests are only recommended for screening in women aged 30 years and older.

♦ HPV tests are not recommended to screen men, adolescents or women under the age of 30 years.

♦ Most people with HPV do not know they are infected and never develop symptoms or health problems from it. Some people find out they have HPV when they get genital warts. Women may find out they have HPV when they get an abnormal Pap test result (during cervical cancer screening).

HPV-related disease in females

♦ Cervical cancer

♦ Vulvar and vaginal cancer

HPV-related disease in females and males

♦ Non-genital warts

♦ Genital warts

♦ Anal cancer

♦ Oropharyngeal cancer

♦ Recurrent respiratory papillomatosis

♦ Other cutaneous diseases

♦ Bowen’s disease

♦ Epidermodysplasia

♦ verruciformis

Can HPV be prevented?

Yes. For most people between the ages of 9 to 26, the best way to protect against HPV is to get the HPV vaccine.

The vaccine only works if it is given before a person gets infected with HPV.

This is why doctors suggest getting it at a young age. The vaccine is very good at preventing the types of HPV infection that can cause cervical and vaginal cancer in women. It might lower the risk of other types of cancer, too. The vaccine is also very good at preventing the types of HPV that cause genital warts.

Recommendation for Vaccination per the CDC

♦ All boys and girls ages 11 or 12 years should get vaccinated. They should get two doses.

♦ Catch-up vaccines are recommended for boys and men through age 21 and for girls and women through age 26, if they did not get vaccinated when they were younger.

HPV vaccine is also recommended for the following people, if they did not get vaccinated when they were younger:

♦ Young men who have sex with men, including young men who identify as gay or bisexual or who intend to have sex with men through age 26;

♦ Young adults who are transgender through age 26;

♦ Young adults with certain immunocompromising conditions (including HIV) through age 26.

♦ There is emerging evidence that HPV vaccination can protect against oropharyngeal HPV infection.


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Albany State alumni urge community to lend support during 'crisis'

ALBANY – Supporters of Albany State University are reacting to what they fear could be a damaging development by turning the “crisis” into an opportunity.

Community members who are opposed to legislation introduced last year that would remove the state’s three historically black colleges and universities from the University System of Georgia will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Albany City Commissioner Jon Howard has headed a number of such meetings since state Sen. Freddie Powell-sims alerted the public to the proposed legislation.

Ahead of that Tuesday session at Union Missionary Baptist Church, 214 E. Oglethorpe Blvd., supporters are urging graduates of Albany State, Fort Valley State and Savannah State to commit to financially supporting those institutions. They are enlisting the faith, education and business communities to take up that challenge.

“There are a number of pastors who have made a commitment in getting the faith-based community involved,” the Rev. Lorenzo Heard of Greater 2nd Mt. Olive Baptist Church said. “(We’re) helping to raise funds for scholarships and for the endowment.”

Since Albany State is an economic engine for Albany and Southwest Georgia, supporters say they hope to draw donors from the region to the cause.

One critical need is housing, said businessman and Albany State graduate Gilbert Udoto. Having sufficient housing on campus is needed to ensure that freshmen who enter the institution can finish their four-year degrees in Albany.

“We have the land, all we need is housing,” he said. “We need some private investor to look at it. It’s just a win-win situation.”

One idea under consideration is having donation locations at home Albany State football games this season to give people the opportunity to drop in contributions.

Homecoming brings many Albany State alumni back to town, but the group envisions something more than the once-a-year boost of that event.

“Whether you like it or not, everybody directly or indirectly benefits from this college,” Udoto said. “If everybody gave $25, that would translate to more jobs, quality of life, just a lot of good things. We are in it for the long haul. We have to do it every day.”

At Tuesday’s meeting, Albany State President Marion Fredrick will address the issue of HB 278, which would remove the three HBCUs from the umbrella of the Georgia Board of Regents and place them under a separate 19-member board of trustees, 11 of whom would be selected by the governor.

“She’s really going to look at some key components of what we need to do,” Howard said. “Her staff will be there to talk about the housing component. Her staff will also talk about stabilizing the enrollment of the institution.”


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Hunters: Early teal, goose seasons start in September

SOCIAL CIRCLE – Early teal season and early Canada goose hunting seasons are the first opportunity of the year for waterfowl hunters to get out in the field, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division. This year, early Canada goose season is Sept. 7-29, with a daily limit of five geese, and early teal season is Sept. 14-29, 2019, with a daily limit of six teal.

Hunters can hunt at any of the Georgia Wildlife Management Areas that are open for small game hunting during the statewide teal and goose seasons or even at beaver ponds and other natural wetlands. (Make sure you have permission to hunt any private property.) Lakes and reservoirs such as Juliette, Clarks Hill, West Point and Seminole offer great hunting opportunities for both teal and geese.

“Look for teal in shallow water areas with submerged or emergent vegetation for teal to feed on,” State Waterfowl Biologist Greg Balkcom said in a DNR news release. “Look for geese in open water areas near pastures or other grassy openings along the bank. Geese are grazers, and they prefer to fly into an area, land on the water then walk up the bank to feed on nearby grasses.”

Waterfowl hunters need a hunting license, the Georgia migratory bird stamp and the federal duck stamp to go after the waterfowl in Georgia. Licenses may be purchased at www.GoOutdoorsGeorgia.com.

More information about waterfowl hunting is available at georgiawildlife.com/migratory-bird-info.


Makel 

Makel, West Town Elementary