In 1980, Harry and Darlene Kelton moved their houseboat to the Pelican Harbor Marina and discovered an injured brown pelican. Without the aid of animal-care experience, they removed a fishhook from his mouth and rehabilitated him. This led them to form the Pelican Harbor Seabird Station in their shed. With the help of volunteers and trained staff, the seabird station rescues, treats, and rehabilitates sick and injured wildlife, and promotes their preservation with educational programs and research efforts. The center specializes in brown pelicans, most of which are entangled in fishing tackle, but will treat any animal brought in for care. In 2007, they treated 87 bird species and 39 mammals, nonmigratory birds, reptiles, and amphibians.
The Healing Factory instructs youth ages 5–17 on proper breathing, simple yoga stretches and poses, and meditation, and provides holistic instruction in art, dance, and nutrition. While practicing yoga and meditation, young participants learn to balance their physical bodies, their emotions, and the unwieldy scales of justice through specific exercises and deep-breathing techniques. Regular yoga practice can also enhance concentration and information retention, and meditation can help reduce violent urges and improve kids' abilities to resolve conflicts. La Luchi would like to purchase yoga mats for graduates of the Healing Factory program to encourage them to continue to nurture their newfound meditative practices at home.
Since 1965, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County have upheld their mission of helping kids 6 to 18 years old build self-esteem and learn important life skills. They continue to provide places for youths to escape life's pressures, which can range from school stress and pent-up energy to more serious issues such as gangs and lack of attention at home. The friendly and dedicated staffers orient their programs toward education, recreational, and healthy living. Kids can join career exploration programs, enjoy nutritious snacks and suppers through the KISS Program. All the while, they’ll learn how to be caring, responsible citizens equipped to make a difference in their communities.
At Advanced Dentistry of Plantation, father-and-son duo Marc and Eli Schwartz pair extensive medical training with an artistic touch to polish and align smiles. The dental team's operating motto—“We create beautiful smiles”—finds its way into nearly all of their general, cosmetic, and restorative treatments. During comprehensive exams, the doctors Schwartz inspect mouths for signs of tooth decay and gum disease before leaning in to listen for the telltale trills of swallowed harmonicas. A digital x-ray machine peers beneath the gumline to find hidden cavities, and a DiagnoDent laser pen helps the dentists locate other minor issues before they become major problems.
Cosmetic enhancements—from thin, custom-made veneers to a full-mouth rejuvenation—fill the gaps in missing, chipped, or crooked teeth. The Zoom whitening system's peroxide-based gel imbues teeth with a stainless glow, and Invisalign braces straighten smiles without temporarily sacrificing their attractiveness.
After Dr. Angel Perez passed away due to kidney cancer, his wife and children discovered a way to honor his memory. Sonia Perez and her daughters were hosting a recreational picnic for his former patients, many of whom were affected by congenital heart defects (CHD) or childhood acquired heart disease, when they realized that these patients and their families needed somewhere they could gather and receive non-medical financial, emotional, and social support outside the hospital. The Perez family founded Angel's Pediatric Heart House to fill this need. The organization provides free programs and services to South Florida children living with CHD such as financial support during a child’s hospital stay; family fun day social events, which provide opportunities for cardiac kids and their families to come together; monthly hospital outreach to three area children’s hospitals and a free infant items donation program through a partnership with a national baby store retailer. Its programs also function as a tool for group healing. Mommy and Me groups provide opportunities to gain support, the Miles and Millas program delivers care packages to kids undergoing heart surgery, and a national CHD awareness campaign spreads encouragement to families and distributes Heart Shadow Buddies to kids in hospitals.
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