Children

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

The Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation says one of every three children in Idaho is overweight or obese, which can lead to health problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. To help stop those risks, the Foundation gives out Community Transformation Grants to Idaho communities to provide access to physical activity and healthy, affordable foods. Gemma Gaudette takes a look at the program.

Amanda Peacher / Mountain West New Bureau

Children with special needs in the Magic Valley have a place to turn when they need special equipment, therapy, travel assistance or family counseling. Since 2006, St. Luke’s Magic Valley Health Foundation has helped more than 400 kids with speech therapy, physical therapy, equipment and hippotherapy. Idaho Matters finds out more about this special program.

AP-Photo/HO

Every year in the U.S. hundreds of babies die from sleep-related causes. That includes everything from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome to soft pillows and blankets. Every year, babies in Idaho die from these causes. Because some of these deaths can be prevented, health providers in the Gem State are putting together programs to make sure babies stay safe when they sleep. Idaho Matters talks with St. Luke's Hospital Director of Advocacy and Community Education Sherry Iverson about this issue. We also talk about National Child Passenger Safety Week. St. Luke's is providing free car seat checks around the state, find a list here.

Iowa Public Radio / BOYS TOWN NATIONAL RESEARCH HOSPITAL / SKIP KENNEDY

Private insurance does not cover the costs for most hearing aids for youths. Efforts to change that are afoot in the state legislature and Idaho Matters speaks with a representative spearheading the initiative and the mother of three children who require hearing aids.

iStockphoto/NPR

With school in session, many people shift their daily schedules to accommodate the school calendar. Recent studies show that these shifts in routine have a more significant impact on children than was earlier thought. Idaho Matters looks into the changes in mood, rhythm, and body clocks that occur in children when their daily schedule is altered.

NPR/iStockphoto.com

Idaho has the second highest rate of unintentional drownings of children in swimming pools, lakes, rivers and canals.  On Monday's edition of Idaho Matters, we speak with Treasure Valley YMCA CEO David Duro about water safety.

Robert Eiserloh / Flickr

Idaho is one of the most accommodating states in the nation for facilitating surrogate pregnancies, so much so that it has becoming something of a destination industry. Idaho Matters looks at why state laws are amenable to surrogacy and how it helps couples looking to start families.

On The Wednesday, July 18, 2018 Edition Of Idaho Matters:

Jul 18, 2018

  • Annie E. Casey study shows Idaho children behind the national curve.
  • BSPR's Frankie Barnhill updates us on the 2018 wildfire season.
  • LDS population is on the rise as other religions see falling numbers.

Every summer we're reminded not to leave children unattended in parked cars, and every summer we hear tragic stories of children passing away in hot cars. Idaho Matters discusses the issue with Sherry Iverson, St. Luke's director of advocacy.

Flickr Creative Commons

A recent report indicated eight of the 10 least-immunized counties in the country are in Idaho.

Because International Distributes Shoes That Last

Jun 21, 2018
Because International

In 2007, Kenton Lee was in Kenya when he noticed the children wore shoes that didn't fit, that were often cut open to accomodate growing feet.

On The Wednesday, June 20, 2018 Edition Of Idaho Matters:

Jun 19, 2018

  • Boise becomes home to America's newest citizens.
  • College of Idaho's co-presidents talk higher education.
  • NPR's Kirk Siegler talks about reporting from Idaho.
  • The City of Boise condemns immigration policy.

youthempowermentservices.idaho.gov

Youth Empowerment Services (YES) provides mental health care for youths in Idaho by coordinating the services of multiple agencies, including the Department of Health and Welfare, State Department of Education and Idaho Department of Juvenile Correction. 

On The Thursday, May 31, 2018 Edition Of Idaho Matters:

May 30, 2018

  • The negative health effects of loneliness.
  • How to talk to kids about school shootings.
  • Little houses that also help seniors.
  • Efforts to preserve Idaho's birds of prey.

Aquability

Aquability is a therapeutic aquatic program designed to help children with disabilities develop "independence and ability, enhance health and fitness, increase self-esteem and improve quality of life." We speak with Karen Morrison, the founder of the Boise-based organization, about using pools to help kids grow.

Student Stress

Apr 27, 2018

Anxiety is the most common mental health ailment, affecting nearly one third of Americans - both adolescent and adult.  Anxiety disorders are being detected in children as young as four.  Christy Porter is a student counselor at St. Joseph's Catholic School in Boise and she sat down with Idaho Matters to discuss the warning signs of stress in school-aged children and ways to alleviate the anxiety.

Idaho Power

It's an annual tradition in southern Idaho. 'Sonny Claus' dons his Santa suit and sits down with area kids who can't hear, using sign language to communicate their Christmas wishes.

As anyone with children, or grandchildren, knows, parenting isn’t easy. Children and adolescents are growing up in a complex and connected world where smartphones, video games, organized activities and friends vie for their attention. At the same time, parents aren’t exactly always sure what their job description should be – or how to best nurture their child.

roberto volterra / Flickr

State auditors say Idaho's child welfare system is overwhelmed, with too few foster parents, too heavy caseloads for social workers and not enough infrastructure to hold it all together.

The study from the Legislature's Office of Performance Evaluations found that the number of foster parents has decreased by 8 percent since 2014, while social workers are dealing with 28 to 38 percent more cases than they can reasonably handle.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation this week released its annual Kids Count Data Book, which examines children’s well being across the country.

The 2015 numbers show Idaho continues to lag in pre-school offerings.

Nearly 70 percent of children don’t attend school until kindergarten. That’s something that concerns Idaho Kids Count Director Lauren Necochea.

Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

A visiting Boise State professor has spent this week trying to get Idaho children to connect with refugee children.

The “Quilting to Speak” workshop is the brainchild of Reshmi Mukherjee. She’s a visiting professor at Boise State, and is teaching a course this summer about communication between refugees and non-refugees.

biologycorner / Flickr

Idaho students scored higher taking new standardized tests compared to the national benchmarks used to measure English language arts and math proficiency.

The Idaho State Department of Education released the preliminary scores on Wednesday.

Scores were supposed to be released June 5, but a delay with the vendor pushed the release date several weeks.

This is the first year the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium examination's scores have been released. Last year, the state rolled out a practice version to work out the kinks of the new system.

It’s a lawsuit that’s been going on since 1980 and it may finally be resolved. Known as the “Jeff D.” lawsuit, it focuses on children’s mental health services in Idaho.

Despite repeated attempts to resolve the 35-year-old case, it keeps coming back. At the core of the issue is Idaho’s system for providing care to kids with mental health problems. The plaintiffs says the state isn’t doing enough for those kids.

daniel / Flickr

This week, we’re going behind the scenes of Idaho’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC). Since 2008, the unit has made 237 arrests in Idaho. The yearly numbers have remained fairly steady for several years, hovering between 30 and 40.

Across the country, ICAC units have seen a consistent increase in the number of people arrested for crimes against children since 2000.

Yannick Meyer / Flickr

Do you know what your kids are doing online? That’s the question Tim Brady asks when he talks about his work protecting children from internet predators. After nine years shielding kids, this Boise Police detective has some advice for parents when it comes to the Internet and safety.

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