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SAY San Diego Reminds Us That Children Need Kiwanis!

18 Aug 2020 12:36 PM | Anonymous

The San Diego Kiwanis Club continued its streak of great meetings on August 18 as it welcomed guest speakers from SAY San Diego. President Judy Leitner rang the bell and after a patriotic song and sincere invocation for the nation – the meeting took off. Club Secretary and “Fun Chair” Karina Sousa offered this icebreaker to the group:

What is your favorite Quarantine Snack?

The answers were varied with Joe Sigurdson swearing by his fried egg sandwiches while others went for items like chips, popcorn, and pretzels. John Rush mentioned his favorite peanut butter pretzels from Trader Joe’s which also provides the tai chili lime cashews that Karina has been enjoying. And you can never go wrong with Costco who sells Pub Mix and the giant jalapeno and garlic olives that Glen Honig is fond of. The big take away was that no one was eating particularly healthy! We will need to schedule another virtual workout meeting if lockdown continues.

President Leitner moved the agenda into the fines and Bill’s Bucks portion of the day and immediately called out Club member Steve Morris. Steve recently got engaged and did not tell anyone! Steve graciously took his punishment and contributed his cash.

The group was saddened to hear that longtime Kiwanian and San Diegan restaurant owner, John Pernicano had passed away due to cancer complications. Mark McDonald, Cal-Nev-Ha District of Kiwanis Executive Director remembered him fondly saying:

“John was full of life; he would come to the Downtown Club and every one of those people knew him. He would come down often and bring his squeeze box (accordion) and a tuba player and play music. It was all those little things … you just laughed, just loved it. He was famous for his fundraisers at his restaurant. He would say, ‘I’ll sell the beverages at the bar, you can have all the pasta you want. I will donate the pasta.’”

He will be missed.

SAY San Diego took over the screen to share about their organization and speaker Lizzy Hurd’s focus at the organization and its partnerships and services which address the comprehensive needs of the entire individual or family rather than focusing on one symptom or problem. She is a community organizer for their project which is the North City Prevention Coalition (NCPC) which is designed to program is designed to help prevent youth alcohol and other drug use.

After her presentation she took questions from the group which included:

Q: Does income level relate in any way to overdose deaths? Unfortunately, the answer was that opioid related deaths are associated with living in poverty. A stunning statistic showed that people who are living in poverty were almost 2 times more likely to have an opioid related death.

Judge Vic Bianchini asked if Narcan (an opioid overdose reversal medication) has a shelf life and was happy to find it can be used for three years after the date of issue.

The meeting wrapped up and adjourned at 1:30 with everyone looking forward to the September 1st meeting with Mayor Kevin Faulconer.


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Kiwanis Club of San Diego is a 501(c)4 non-profit organization. 

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