It’s audition day for Beyond Idol. Contestants pace around a large waiting area at Laney College, practicing softly to themselves as they wait for their turn.
This is a contest for Alameda County’s foster and probation youth, designed to showcase their talent and boost their self-confidence. Categories include original poetry, singing and rapping. There are definitely jitters in the room as each contestant goes before a panel of five judges. But the judges are kind in their feedback, like Judge Ralph Hall.
Earlier this month, a temporary increase in food stamps—enacted during the financial crisis—expired. More than 47 million people are affected—that’s one in seven Americans. These are the deepest cuts to the federal program since it started back in 1964. It means that a family of three now has 29 dollars less to spend on food every month.
In California, the food stamp program is called Cal-Fresh. And local food banks are seeing first hand what happens when money is cut. Keisha Nzewi, the Advocacy Manager for the Alameda County Community Food Bank came to the station here at KALW to talk about the future of food distribution in the Bay Area.
In 2008, Reinaldi Gilder promised himself that he would never go back to jail. Since his release in December of that year, he’s not only managed to keep his word, he has also shown others that they can do the same.
Are lesbian, gay and transgender seniors getting proper and respectful care in nursing homes, day-care centers and in their own homes? A groundbreaking state-funded survey in Alameda County showed very encouraging trends, and also room for improvement. Dan Ashbrook of the non-profit group Lavender Seniors conducted a series of caregiver trainings also funded by the state grant.