Cultural Inclusion Coordinator: HRVHS grad named to new post in Beaverton

Mayor Denny Doyle announced recently that Daniel Vázquez has been hired as the new cultural inclusion coordinator for the City of Beaverton. Vázquez is a 2002 graduate of Hood River Valley High School and formerly served as the community advocate for the City of Portland’s Office of Equity and Human Rights.

“Mr. Vázquez brings an immense amount of passion and experience to this position,” said Mayor Doyle. “He has successfully immersed himself in several cultures and I’m confident that the outreach work he’ll be doing for Beaverton will make our city even more inclusive.”

Most recently, Vázquez had been assisting with the New Portlander Program, which works to integrate immigrants and refugees to the life of Portland and assure that our communities continue to develop and prosper. Vázquez has been instrumental in assisting to establish the New Portlander Policy Council, which reports directly to Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz.

The Policy Council implements the recommendations of the 2008 Mayor’s Immigrant & Refugee Task Force.

Aside from his work with the city of Portland, Vázquez volunteers as the public outreach and volunteer coordinator with Colored Pencils Art and Culture Council in Portland. Up until June of this year Vázquez had worked as an instructional teaching assistant for the Hood River County School District helping Mexican students learn English. He is also assisting the Oregon Trail Driving School to build a new partnership with the Portland Police Bureau to offer Drivers Education to the Spanish-speaking community.

Vázquez has worked extensively with the surrounding community and individuals, and has familiarity with the leaders of ethnic communities.

“Because Beaverton is one of the most diverse cities in Oregon, we have cultural and language barriers that must be addressed,” said Mayor Doyle. “I’m impressed with Daniel’s multilingual abilities and it’s my hope that through this new cultural inclusion coordinator position, we will be better equipped to serve all of our residents.”

Vázquez is a native Spanish speaker and writer. He attended his junior year of high school in Thailand and later taught English in China, Japan and South Korea. He is fluent in Thai and Mandarin Chinese, and has moderate speaking proficiency in Japanese and Korean.

Vázquez will be responsible for planning, organizing and conducting outreach to ethnic communities in Beaverton on behalf of the Mayor’s Office.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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