Community Notes


Red Cross seeks volunteers to work at blood drives

The Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross is seeking volunteers to assist at Maryland blood drives.

The volunteer "ambassadors," who must be 14 years old or older, will greet donors, provide them with reading materials, serve refreshments and observe donors for post-donation reactions. Training is provided.

Volunteers are requested to commit to attending two or more blood drives a month at Red Cross offices in Baltimore City, or Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford or Howard counties. The drives are from 4 1/2 to six hours long.

To register for training: 800- 272-0094, ext. 1 or e-mail karl

Kwanzaa celebration today in Columbia

A county-wide Kwanzaa celebration will be held from 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. today in Kahler Hall, 5440 Old Tucker Row, Columbia. Doors open at 4 p.m.

The celebration is cosponsored by the Howard County Center of African-American Culture Inc., the Council of Elders, the Howard County NAACP, The Ellicott City Colored School and St. John's Baptist Church.

Food, music, dancing and singing, storytelling and other activities are planned.

Information: 410-715-1921.

Health Department smoking cessation program

The Howard County Health Department's Tobacco Control Program will sponsor an eight-week program to help participants stop smoking. It will be held from noon to 1 p.m. or 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Wednesdays, starting Jan. 5.

The "Tobacco Cessation Program," which includes medication to help participants succeed, will be held at the Health Department, 7178 Columbia Gateway Drive, Columbia.

Admission is free, but registration is required. The deadline to register is Wednesday.

Information or to register: 410-313-6265.

Columbia TV program to interview area teens

The Columbia Association's new cable television program about issues facing local residents, Columbia Matters, is seeking Columbia teens to be interviewed about programs they would like to see.

Video footage of selected participants will be aired on the February show, during the "What's On Your Mind, Columbia?" segment.

A camera crew will be at the Columbia Teen Center in the Oakland Mills Village Center for a taping from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 8. Planned activities also include crafts, cooking, a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, pool and pingpong.

Participants must have a release form signed by a parent or guardian.

Columbia Matters will begin airing Jan. 3 on Howard Community College's Cable Channel 71.

Information or to participate in the taping: 410-992-3726 or e-mail, CATVshow@columbia

Dependents of deployed military get CA membership

The Columbia Association will offer a free one-year package plan membership to dependents of residents deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.

The service member must be deployed outside Maryland. Dependents must provide verification that they live on Columbia Association-assessed property and will continue to do so during their family member's deployment.

Residents must submit proof of eligibility.

Information: 410-730-1801.

Volunteers being sought for a hearing study

The Howard County Office on Aging is recruiting volunteers age 50 and older for a research study on hearing.

Volunteers, who will be paid $20, will be asked to take a two-hour course, "Now Hear This: Tips for Better Hearing at Home," next month or in February. Tips include strategies for hearing better at home and in the community. Those who wear a hearing aid may also find the course useful.

The course, which is being offered in partnership with Ideas Consulting Inc., will be offered in a classroom and on the Web. The study's purpose is to determine how people best learn. A follow-up is planned to evaluate results.

Information: Regina Jenkins, 410-313-1417.

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