Fountain Hills is not immune to the many serious community issues covered by national media and major metropolitan areas. On Saturday, October 30, from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Fountain Hills Community Center, expert speakers will present and answer questions on issues impacting Fountain Hills.
Fountain Hills Cares will present topics on “Race Relations in Fountain Hills”, “The Rise of Fentanyl”, “Mental Health and Suicide Awareness” and the issue of “Homelessness in Our Community”. Experts in these fields have been recruited for this event. After the presentations, there will be a question-and-answer session with all the panelists.
“We live in a beautiful city, but like any other, we face challenges for a happy and healthy life here at home as well as in the community at large,” said Mayor Ginny Dickey. “Fountain Hills Cares is an opportunity to learn more about some of the issues that affect us and be part of the solution. “
Presenters for this free event include some of the region’s leading subject matter experts.
Race Relations in Fountain Hills – Jonae Harrison is the Equity and Inclusion Officer for the City of Tempe, Arizona. She brings to her role over 18 years of legal and political experience in government, non-profit organizations, business and private practice. Harrison holds a Bachelor of Science in Languages - double major in Spanish and English – from Georgetown University and a Juris Doctorate from Tulane University.
Homelessness in Our Community – Amy St. Peter is the Deputy Executive Director of the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG), the regional planning agency for the Greater Phoenix area. In this role, she coordinates various priorities and perspectives in developing solutions that boost vitality in one of the country’s fastest growing areas. His areas of expertise include organizational and program development, roaming, aging, smart regions, transportation and civil rights.
Ellie Hutchison is currently part-time Social Justice Coordinator with AZ Faith Network, part-time as Director of Mission Outreach with Fountain Hills United Methodist Church, Member in Discernment with Beatitudes United Church of Christ, a Fellow with the Newbigin Center, and current chair of the MCSO LGBTQIA Community Advisory Board. She works actively with communities experiencing homelessness, those migrating to the United States and those directly affected by incarceration.
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention – Marle Ethelbah is the Community Outreach and Education Coordinator in the Arizona Attorney General’s Office. Ethelbah graduated from ASU with a bachelor’s degree in social work. His presentation focuses on the adolescent suicide epidemic at both state and national levels. She will discuss what to do when someone talks about ending their own life, tools that help us alert us to warning signs and learn about the risk and protective factors for suicide in young people.
The Rise of Fentanyl in Our Community – Mike Scharnow is a member of the City Council and Executive Director of the Fountain Hills Youth Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition. The coalition is entering its 12th grade in Fountain Hills and, through community-wide collaboration, is working to reduce substance abuse among youth ages 12-18. His talk, “The Rise of Fentanyl,” will focus primarily on the growing epidemic of deadly counterfeit pills containing fentanyl and, as a result, on unsuspecting young people and adults dying of overdoses.
The Fountain Hills Cares Community Conversation Event will take place on Saturday, October 30, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Fountain Hills Community Center located at 13001 N. La Montana Dr.