Rod Sullivan, Supervisor, Johnson County, Iowa

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March 21, 2014

Sullivan’s Salvos     3/25/14

In this edition:

*No Salvos Next Week!
*DVIP Souper Bowl
*Community Health Initiatives
*Agape Café Breakfast Fundraiser
*Did You Know?

*No Salvos Next Week!
         There will be no Salvos next week, as Melissa and I will be in Haiti on a mission trip. Enjoy your break! Please have some stimulating conversations without me!

*DVIP Souper Bowl
The Domestic Violence Intervention Program (DVIP) is hosting its Seventeenth Annual "Souper Bowl" fund raising event to be held March 27, 2014, 5:30-7:30pm at the Clarion Hotel and Highlander Convention Center on North Dodge. 

The Souper Bowl dinner provides funding to support victims of domestic violence. The FBI estimates that 1 in 3 women will be affected by intimate partner violence, dating violence or stalking by an intimate partner. Nearly 600 people attend this event annually providing much needed funding for victims facing the impact of violent crime and homelessness due to abuse.

The Souper Bowl event is supported by more than 40 area restaurants donating their best soups. Artists, students, and merchants donate bowls for those attending the Souper Bowl to take home. For the price of a ticket ($25.00 per person, $15.00 for students and children eat free) select your favorite bowl and have as much soup as you can eat. Live music feature is the Dick Watson/Eve Minkler Duo. All of the money raised supports DVIP services in Johnson County. 

The DVIP is looking for volunteers for the event; those interested in volunteering can call DVIP at 319-351-1043 for more information. 

DVIP is a United Way agency and relies on private donations to provide services to children and adults affected by violence. In July, Iowa Attorney General’s office expanded DVIP’s service area from four counties (Cedar, Iowa, Johnson and Washington) to eight counties. Our newest service area includes Des Moines, Henry, Lee and Van Buren counties. In addition, DVIP was selected to host the Regional Hotline for 13 counties stretching from Jackson County, South to Lee County. The Attorney General’s office provided additional funding for this expansion, and this effort was supported by last year’s Iowa Legislature.

DVIP provides crisis intervention and support services to more than 1700 women, children and men last year, and received nearly 18,000 hotline calls. Confidential information and assistance is available 24 hours a day at (319) 351-1043 or toll free at 1-800-373-1043.

         Since we are on our way to Haiti, I thought I’d share a few facts and figures:

Haiti is about one fifth the size of Iowa, and is home to almost 9 million people. Almost 3 million of those people live in and around Port Au Prince, the capital city. Haiti is only 50 miles from Cuba, and only 700 miles from Miami.

Haiti is home to the actual spot that Christopher Columbus first landed in 1492. It is the only nation in the world formed as a result of a slave revolt; Haiti was founded when the slaves defeated Napoleon’s army in 1804. Since that time, the people of Haiti have suffered under several dictatorial regimes.

Over 85% of Haitians live below the absolute poverty line; most get by on less than $2 per day. Two-thirds of the population lack formal employment. 60% of Haiti’s GDP consists of remittances from former Haitians living abroad. Only 10% of Haitians have electricity. Fewer than 30% of Haitians reach 6th grade. Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, and one of the five or ten poorest countries in the world.

         Creole is the primary language, and while most people consider themselves Christians, most people also participate in Voodoo. The average temperature in April is 90 degrees.

         While this all sounds pretty daunting, I am told that the people are friendly and have excellent senses of humor. I am looking forward to learning more!

*Community Health Initiatives
         We are travelling to Haiti with a group called Community Health Initiatives (CHI). CHI is the brainchild of Dr. Chris Buresh, who is a Coralville resident and Emergency Room physician at UIHC. Dr. Buresh first went to Haiti in 2003, and founded CHI in 2009.

CHI provides services in Archaie and Les Anglais, which are far away from Port Au Prince. Patients must walk up to eight hours just to reach the clinics. CHI tries to provide peanut butter sandwiches at the clinics, as most patients have not eaten.

A large percentage of the Haitian population suffers from malnutrition; many children are underweight and have stunted growth and development. Infant mortality is more than ten times that of the US. Life expectancy is just over 50 years old. Infectious disease is rampant, including HIV (6% of all Haitians are infected) and TB. Malaria and Dengue Fever are everywhere. Many animals are rabid.

64% of the population lack latrines. Even with all these issues, perhaps the biggest problem facing Haiti is the lack of clean drinking water. 98% of all water tested was positive for fecal coliform bacteria.

         This is the environment in which CHI does its’ work. It is a neat organization; I urge you to visit the website at and check it out. Donations are always appreciated!

Even though she works as a Research Scientist, Melissa remains a registered pharmacist. She’ll be working as a pharmacist while we are there.

         I have no medical skills. I have no idea in Hell what I’ll be doing! I guess we’ll see! Please wish us luck!

*Agape Café Breakfast Fundraiser
         The Agape Café is holding a breakfast fundraiser Saturday, April 5 from 8-11am at Old Brick. The menu includes pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, home fries, biscuits and gravy, fresh fruit, and more!

A freewill donation is requested; $10 covers your meal plus some; $20 purchases food for 15 café guests.

Please come out and support Iowa City’s café for our homeless and in need neighbors!

*DID YOU KNOW?  A favorite Haitian saying is, “Pale franse pa di lespri.” That translates into, “Speaking French doesn’t mean you’re smart.”

Anyone interested in learning more about County government should take a look at the County website-

"Sullivan’s Salvos" is sent once per week to any interested party. It will give a brief update on issues of interest to Johnson County residents.

These messages come solely from Rod Sullivan, and neither represents the viewpoints of the whole Board of Supervisors nor those of groups or individuals otherwise mentioned.

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As always, feel free to contact me at 354-7199 or I look forward to serving you!



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