Catching up on the last couple months… I did a newspaper interview with the director of the local Awakening Minds Art Program. It is in some 19 counties of Northwest Ohio and is, primarily, designed to use art as a medium to help special needs youth and adults. The director, Sarah Crisp, pointed to, for instance, Jared Willis, 16, who, physically, has a degree of “dwarfism,” and is a bit mentally delayed as well. (He had just won the program’s “Your Colors Change the World” award for some of his art. He has, in time, become quite an artist, and by extension, a much more confident and optimistic youth these days. Rosalyn Carter was a big proponent of getting much more funding, and help in general, for mental health issues. Our administration would pick up that torch in a major way — looking at mental health issues on a par with physical health issues… Our foreign policy would focus much more — than the U.S.’s current paradigm — on worldwide poverty. (Some half the world populace lives on $2 a day, or less.) During this time, I also interviewed Bluffton University’s Professor Paul Neufeld Weaver. He is the director of the university’s Cross Cultural Program. He, for instance, takes students to a tough metro-neighborhood in the country of Columbia. They distribute food to the homeless, to drug addicts, to gang members, to prostitutes… The professor refers to it as a “Mathew 25 moment” for many of the students. What’s more, hopefully, just as many of the students come back with a much clearer understanding of the face of abject poverty, and such, in some of these countries. And by extension with this one, they then also get behind more non-profit and governmental initiatives to help in these poorer countries.